Monday, June 2, 2008

The "my legs feel like rubber" edition

This past weekend was the MS150 bike ride on the Eastern Shore of Virginia.

I have loved bicycling for a long time and I made it a goal to complete this ride this year.  Here are the details:

150.69 miles (over two days, roughly 75 miles each day)
Average Speed: 15.2 MPH
Max Speed: 24.2 (hills and pacelines can be fun)
Calories burnt: 4329.3
Total time in the saddle: 9hrs52min
Number of sunburnt extremities: 5 (arms, legs, neck)

I had a wonderful time and I am now addicted to distance bicycling.  I have tried to get into distance running (I've done a couple of half marathons) but nothing comes close to this.  Let me be clear; I am very sore in various places including my legs, but I don't feel a fraction of the "beat-upness" I have felt even after my best runs.  It was not all without event, however...

The first day we went out feeling great and at about the 6th mile I heard a familiar and stomach turning sound:  (SPHINGGGGG).   A spoke broke on my back wheel.  Luckily, the SAG support on MS rides is top shelf.  Within 5 minutes I had a truck and mechanic with me wrenching on my back wheel.  We couldn't replace the spoke (it was on the cassette side and would have required some major surgery) so this "field medic" mechanic tweaked the tension on my remaining spokes (causing another one to pop) enough to get the wheel true - it would spin - but not perfectly round.  Imagine riding over a speed bump with every wheel revolution.  This guy was a godsend - I would have been REALLY DARK on the prospect of having to SAG in after 6 miles.  His work got me to mile 58 or so when...SPHINGGGGG!  Another one!!! %$^*&%$#^^%$#@#^&*(&^%$!!!!!  Luckily I was about a mile from a rest stop so when the SAG truck showed up, I tossed my bike in the back and rode up to the next stop where Bike Beat had a bike M*A*S*H unit set up.  Roger the mechanic replaced all three spokes and got me set up enough to finish the ride - into a 20mph headwind.  If that weren't service enough, he had me come by at the camp so he could do some MAJOR surgery on my wheel, ensuring a smooth ride back on day two.  He did a great job as I had no mechanical problems on day two.

Day two was uneventful but for some beautiful scenery, one giant turtle and soreness.

A great time all around!!!

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