Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Rides, rides and more rides ...

So I am trying to amp up my training for the Shenandoah, now less than 12 weeks away. I've got a long way to go before I will believe I am ready -- Sunday's ride at Blue Marsh confirmed that. More on that in a minute.

Shenandoah - We'll ride everything you see plus a whole lot more

So I was originally planning to race at Neshaminy this past weekend, but I had my nephew's 3rd birthday to go to the in the afternoon, and also decided it was less important to go fast for 14 miles than it was to do a longer training ride now, because I need to be building more now. And besides, I'm racing a "short" race in NJ this weekend. So I started in the morning and managed to fit in a little more than 21 miles before heading to my sister's place for the party.

Then came Sunday. I headed out to Blue Marsh in the mid-morning planning to ride 50 miles. Buy it didn't work out that way. I was feeling okay for most of the ride, but I screwed up my hydration and started to feel really weak about 20 miles in. The farther I went. the worse I felt, and pretty soon I realized 50 miles was out of the question. I started to think I'd just do an extra 10, but even that became untenable. I finally decided to cut my losses and head home after just one lap. One lap is a good ride at Blue Marsh -- about 30 miles and lots of climbing. But if I'm going to do 100 down at Shenandoah, it can't feel that tough to do two laps at Blue Marsh. And this is why I say I've got a long way to go before I'm ready for the SM100.

So this week, I've been out two days -- a Tuesday morning ride that went really well. I was on the trail by 5 a.m. and fit in 13 miles before work. I love morning workouts like that -- it makes me feel good all day at work.

Then tonight, I got out for another 21+ miles at Wissahickon. Another good ride, but very humid -- I was drenched in sweat that just wouldn't evaporate five minutes into the ride. My moving pace was good, but my total MPH was a little lower because I had to stop at one point to dress a gash on my knee (I've hit the same spot about three or four times now recently.) The funny thing is, I was really tired by the end of the ride, but I was attacking climbs more vigorously than I was most of the rest of the ride and feeling less tired when I did. Odd. But I'll take it.

I'll look to ride one or two more times before the Lewis Morris Challenge this Sunday. Maybe Friday I'll take summer hours again and try for the 50 again at Blue Marsh.

My plan now is to build more and more mileage on the singlespeed. To be honest, I'm a little daunted by this challenge -- the SM100 has some brutal climbs and it's a tough course on a gear bike. I've never done this kind of ride on my singlespeed. I'm not even sure I can do it. But I'm going to try like hell to get ready and take my best shot.

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