Total 200... oh where to begin?
The ride started at 6am down in Anacostia Park. So, we woke up around 4:30 and left our house to ride there around 5:15am. Yes ride there.It's close to our house, maybe 1.5 - 2 miles. We got there in plenty of time to check in and meet up with Holli, Adam and other DC Tri-ers who were also riding. And before we knew it everyone was at the start line and we were ready to roll.
To the first rest stop - around mile 22
We left Anacostia and made our way back over Penn Ave's bridge and did a lap around the Capitol. It was pretty cool to see 500 cyclists take over the streets of DC. Then we made our way back over the bridge and into Maryland. The first few miles were pretty uneventful. Until my little glass sweeper (M) got a flat at mile 10. I swear I can't take Jason anywhere without him getting a flat. As he started changing the tire, the road side crew stopped and helped him. We were back on the road in no time, but there wasn't a single cyclist around by the time we starting rolling so we were on our own. This stretch takes you along MD's route 4. It's a busy road with cars going 60-70mph. Debris from the storm was all over the shoulder and being on a road that busy was not my favorite. I felt like I was going to die especially when we had to ride past the off ramps. I literally started crying because I was so scared. I wanted to turn around more than anything in the world and go home. But I figured all the roads couldn't be this bad? It was also suppose to be a record high for the day and a heat advisory was out. I wanted to be smart about this ride and stop at every rest stop to refill my water bottles.
To next rest stop - mile 50
As planned I had two new bottles filled. One with electrolytes and one with just water. I was also taking a salt tab every hour to make sure I wouldn't become dehydrated. The roads def. got better for miles 25-50, but the shoulders of the roads still had down trees, power lines, and branches all over the place. At one point we rode over live power lines because they stretched across the entire road. Smart. Also, all the stop lights were out which made going through them a little scary. I was feeling good through these miles and honestly don't remember much besides thinking the rest stop was taking forever to get to because I had to go to the bathroom so bad. Once we made it to the rest stop I refilled my bottles again and had my first coke of the day along with some oero cookies. Also re-applied sun screen.
To next rest stop - mile 80
This stretch was along a road were they were doing roadwork along the shoulders and the pavement was all torn up. Which meant either riding and having your teeth fall out or riding on the road and getting honked at by cars. It was also getting very hot by this point of the day and I actually ran out of water in my aero bottle and was halfway through my bottle on my cage. Luckily total 200 brought in an emergency stop at mile 70 which was a back of a van that had water and Gatorade along with goldfish. This was so nice and I filled my bottles back up. Unfortunately with the bumpy pavement most of my aero bottle just came right back on me. It was also along this point that we met up with Sarah. She had gone the wrong way and had gotten a flat so we rode the rest of the way together until the rest stop.
* Lunch Stop
Mile 80 was the lunch rest stop and I may have not needed as long of a break as Jason did, but of course I stayed there with him. We took our time, ate a PB&J sandwich, had another coke and rested for a half hour. The shade felt great.
To Next rest stop - mile 99
More miles and some hills. Actually the hills weren't too bad on this ride at all. 4,206 feet of climbing over 125 miles. My legs were feeling great and I was happy and singing to Jason as we rode. He always gets upset that I start getting my legs around mile 50 and feel good the longer we ride. I kindof wanted to skip the last rest stop, but knew it wouldn't be smart not to get more water. Oh also I found out I hate Heed. That stuff is nasty. Anyhow, at this rest stop they had candy! Swedish fish! my favorite!
I had some of those and another coke. I love coke and bike riding. It's like the two were made for eachother.
To next stop - the finish line - mile 125
I was feeling good through the 112 split which I finished in just a little over 7 hours. Of course this was with rest stops, so hoping I feel this good on race day without so many stops. Although I have it in my head now that I need a coke at special needs. Now to just figure out how to keep it cold for that long? Anyhow, there was one big hill around mile 114 which killed me. It was a long steep hill or at least it felt that way.
I really didn't enjoy any of the miles after that hill. We snaked our way back into the city through Anacosita and some pretty busy streets. It seemed to take forever and we stopped at lots of stoplights. At this point we were riding with a group that we picked up at lunch. My hands were hurting from not riding in aero enough and my inner thigh was chaffed from my saddle. I just wanted to be done with the ride. I was pretty happy when we came back into the park, but not before seeing a guy running on the trail in a speedo. that was fun. I guess Jason also got flashed by a nice lady in Anacostia as well. I missed that one.
Yippy I made it, I mean we made it! In just a little over 8 hours of total riding time.
And it wasn't as bad as I thought. This is the longest I have ridden (128 miles) and the longest I think I ever want to ride in a single given day. I think it was great training for Louisville and yeah dare I say it was fun despite some tears, 100+ degree weather (my garmin had a high of 111), and trees all over the place. The volunteers were great and it was well organized. Some how they even got us ice at all the rest stops despite stores not being open due to no electricity.
I also loved the medals/gears we got at the end. But I didn't love getting back on Boomer and riding home.
Happy Tues All :)