29 June 2010

I can ride for miles and miles!

Day Two SunriseEither Ride the Rockies made me tough, or the MS-150 got easier.

I finished Saturday's ride in 5:25. That's the best MS-150 time I've had since my back surgery in 2004. I finished Sunday's ride in 5:36. Total saddle time for both days: 11:01.39. That's my best two-day 150-mile time EVER.

It got hot a couple of times, but I never once felt I couldn't go on. The climbs seemed easy compared to what we did last week. The miles literally ticked by like seconds on a clock.

My back started hurting about mile 120 Sunday (I didn't reset my odometer before starting the second morning), and my knee is a little sore. My saddle is a little tender, but not anywhere near as bad as after Ride to Work Day last Wednesday.

Sunday SweetsMS-150 rest stops are much closer together than Ride the Rockies rest stops. MS-150 staff, volunteers and sponsors work very hard to make sure riders with multiple sclerosis have everything they need so they can complete the ride if they are able (which makes the entire weekend easier for people like me who don't have MS but battle different hurdles). A wide variety of fruit, cookies and trail mix concoctions were abundant at every stop. I had FRESH peaches at three stops! I had watermelon at one stop and at both finish lines.

I've learned from this ride that stopping to stretch on the bike when I get tight or sore is not enough for me. I need to get off the bike and walk around every 15 miles or so. I suppose that's what my body has been conditioned to do through years of cycling events, and the 2010 (most difficult course on record) Ride the Rockies may have thrown me off a bit with rest stops much further apart. Now I know to just stop, lay my bike down or lean it against something, and walk around for about three minutes every 15 miles, whether there is an official rest stop or not. My back handles the stress much better if I treat it that well.

I've also learned it's a heck of a lot easier to climb when there's air! Air is in abundance at 5,000 and 6,000 feet and not in such ample supply at 10,000 feet.

Check out the little tire tracks on the logo!I didn't take any pictures at all. (But The Lizard had a ball with my camera!) Does it sound like an imposter rode in my place?!? Never took my camera out of the pack. Partially because I was having a good ride and wanted to continue, and I think I also might be just a little biked out on cycling photography. No ride photo opportunities appealed to me, so I just kept riding.

We watched Team USA's World Cup bid come to an end after Saturday's ride. That was one really humorous aspect of this year's MS-150. Many of the riders who passed me on Saturday were discussing where they would watch the World Cup when they finished. Everyone was in a hurry to get to CSU so they could find a television. To heck with the traditional bands, entertainment and presentations at the finish line; gotta watch soccer!

And now I have a little pop quiz to see how well you know me. I made the HUGE mistake of
calculating my miles for the month of June as of Sunday night, and I'm at 909. Any idea what I'm trying to do before midnight June 30?

Today's photos courtesy of The Lizard!
My MS-150 Medal Collection

11 comments :

  1. Wow!! Your time is great!!! Congratulations!!!

    It sounds like the food at those stops were quite yummy!! Fresh peaches are THE best!!

    As for the pop quiz. First let me say I stink at quizzes, but my guess is you're trying to get to 1000. Am I right??

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  2. wow, what a ride!
    Thankfully with your camera I can savely sit in my office and enjoying your biking trip on my comfort zone :D

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  3. That is some ride! It's not every day you feel like taking photographs. I recently had a few of those days myself.

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  4. Is that a cake? It's enormous. And now i'm hungry.

    Congrats on completing Ride the Rockies!

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  5. a lot of medals. :) I was looking at the photos in your gallery. The sunset photos are amazing :)

    I love the flax too. It is a very nice color on the flower adn the yarn is very good.

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  6. Very nice job on the photos ... that sunset picture is gorgeous! Going for 1000?

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  7. Yuppers! Going for the big 1,000! 46 yesterday; 30 this morning; 15 to go!

    "The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step." — Lao Tzu (or at least a single pedal stroke...)

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  8. Great time...and with back surgery in '04!!!!!!!! Wow!
    I am so proud to read about, and be part of, your trek... :)

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  9. I am just SO impressed at the way you keep going! You should feel SO very proud!

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  10. Way to go!!! It's great that you're figuring out how to manage your back so that you can ride, ride, and ride! Great time!

    During our trip, we visited Salida to stock up on food etc, and I took a shower at their hot springs pool. I saw that Ride for the Rockies had been there... thought of you but I can only imagine how long the line for the showers was on that day!

    I love the mountains near Salida. So quiet and beautiful.

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