First of all, my little mountain hypothesis (I mistakenly called it a theory before it was tested) is now a theory. I rode like the wind on the club ride this evening and it was awesome. It was a bit on the windy side which normally will slow things down – not tonight. We started off at 20 for the first two miles right off the bat. The next six miles were between 22 and 23…and then it got fast. The next five were 25 to 26 mph. Then we hit the non-existent hills and alternated miles, 25, 21, 27, 20, 27. I was keeping up quite well and I could envision making it with the big dogs to the finish line… And then the guys at the front cranked it up to 30 leading up to that one hill on the ride. I held on for one last mile at 23 before I sat up, gassed – along with 65% of the group. That last two miles had us dropping like flies.
I rode back, up front in a make-shift group with Phil and Zach, for the last ten miles between 19 and 21 mph. It was definitely a bit of a bummer getting dropped, but at those speeds, I can live with it. In fact, I rode so far beyond what I thought my best was, I’m looking at the experience as a huge victory. Too bad we couldn’t have kept it between 23 and 25 – I’d have made it.
I also did a few things that worked on my 90 mile 4th of July ride. I started with a Gatorade Prime and a Cliff Bar (Oatmeal/raisin/walnut – they’re excellent). During the ride, I took shorter pulls up front, that way I had some left to latch on to the back. Those few items had me feeling fantastic at the 17 mile mark, hardly breathing heavy.
All in all, it was a great ride.