Monday, August 19, 2013

Century Ride

Please note I wrote this last week but have been working long shifts since and have had no time to post it.

I had one of THOSE days!
           Every year I ride the Muddy Waters Century Ride. It’s a charity fund raiser. And every year it turns into a 160 km race. In the past I would finish in the middle group and it’s fun.  This year I set might sights a little higher. I would finish first. I pre-rode part of the course. I did 99 km in 2 hours and 37minutes with a strong head wind. I’m sure I could do the 160 under 4.5 hours.
          For the ride I installed a second video camera facing backwards. That way I could get great shots of these racers as I passed them. I took out everything out of the Quest except a patch kit  pump and blanket. I did the 99 km using less than 2 liters of fluid so I took 4 liters so I would have to stop at the rest stops like the other riders. I also packed some food and gels.  I also changed the tires the week before to Durando’s on all 3 wheels instead of the Marathon racer on the back.  I was ready!
          The night before it rained all evening. The forecast  for the ride was  clear and sunny. Sunday morning came and I was up before the alarm could go off.  I showered, fed the Huskies, and ate a good breakfast.  Out the door I went to the shop to take out the Quest. I opened the door and it was foggy. Very foggy. No problem as I was early and I had planned to take it easy to ride the 28 km to the start.  Well I guess I don’t judge speed too well in the fog, because I made really good time. I only hit one red light the whole way there. By arriving there early the ladies doing the setup put me to work. I helped putout the donuts and coffee. For my help I was rewarded with the number one for the side of the Quest.
          For the start I went to the back of the line. I figured passing a couple hundred riders would make great video. I placed the new camera facing backwards and my old one facing forward. The fog was getting thick now. We started slowly traveling east and then north to get out of the city. I started slowly working my way to the front .  One of the racers in a club I ride with said to me, lets go! We cruised to the front and brought the pace up to 40 kph. After a while the pack behind me started to fall back a bit. At that point I picked up speed and started cruising about 45 KPH.. They disappeared in the fog behind me.. About 75 km. into the ride I hit a pothole and had a pinch flat. I pulled out my stuff and put the Quest on it’s side and fixed the tire. Now I’m not fast at fixing tires but I got back on the road and still no sign of the riders behind me. I felt cold after that stop but I picked up speed again. I went a few km and my right Quad started to cramp up. I had to stop and stretch it out. I got going again but I kept my speed around 40 KPH. I went a little ways and then my left calf muscle started to cramp. Again I pulled over to stretch it. This time I popped a magnesium pill and stretched it out..
          After that the best I could do was about 35 KPH or my legs started to cramp. The first group of fast guys passed me soon after. Last time I had cramps was over a year ago on a really hot day.  i was 300 km into a 400 km Brevet. This time I was cold and damp. I finished about 12 minutes behind the fast group at a time of 5 hours and 9 minutes. It was a painful finish as all my leg muscles seemed to take turns cramping up. At least to fog cleared up before the finish. Of course I feel disappointed in myself. This was the shortest ride I have done in while, and I am in good shape. If anyone has any insight about cramps please comment.
          After the finish I stuck around for more coffee and food .  I met up with some of the other recumbent people and we drew quite a crowd.
  I rode home at a real easy pace. Of all the group rides I have done this one was the shortest but it hurt the most.. What hurts the most today the day after the ride is my new camera did not record anything and the front camera was covered in moisture so you can’t see much in the fog. It was just one of those days where everything went wrong. But next year I will have more FUN…


  1. Hi Kevin,

    Yeah, those days........ Best to forget the misery, and focus on the next trip, it can't be worse then this one. On the other hand: you didn't finish in the mid-group, but just behind the fastest guys! That's a progression anyway!
    I'm sure you'll do better next time!
    Keep up the faith!

    Greetings, Adri.

  2. Hi Kevin,
    What a of thosecdays indeed. An R&D advice: cry until you drop and start all over again. You have to say this aloud and with a smile.
    I'm not a specialist in cramps, but it seems you've underestimated the cool down during the tire change? A too fast cool down followed by a forced restart putting too much stress on the cold muscles? Sounds like a pretty good recipee for cramps in my legs.
    Next year a better year.

  3. Oh, and euh, I was already surprised how long you could keep your Durano's rolling. I was fed up with them after 2500km and 4 flats. Replaced them with Marathon Greenguards. Rolling resistance is comparable, but no flats anymore. Both have poor comfort.