Today I went a little GO ride! I got up early and drove to Simi Valley for their Share the Road Ride, again. I did it last year, so this was my second attempt.. Last year I finished the 100K, but I was dragging …..
One thing I have learned last year, is that I was not getting the electrolytes I needed, not just with this ride, but other rides and some of my runs and races….. For example, at this ride last year, I started the ride with one water bottle, filled with water. I had a few gels also. The first aide station was 20 miles into the ride and my water was gone at 10. Once I got to the station I drank a whole bottle of water, and took a refill with me. I skipped the drink mix…. just nuts and such for electrolytes.
Since then I have set my ElliptiGO up with 2 water bottles. I was well into the 2nd one by the time I got to the station and once I got there I took the sports drinks. I made sure to drink often and drink big quantities when I did. It worked great. I stayed strong through the finish.
But before I get to the finish, let’s talk about the beginning. They gave me the wrong color bib. I had a white “Century Ride” bib, when I should have had an Orange Metric Century bib. I asked if I should trade and the lady at the counter said no, just be sure to follow the orange arrows..
A few miles into the ride a car with a couple of young course off2icials passed me and asked which ride I was doing. I told them the Metric Century. The ride went up and over the first of many hills. The Century riders had all pulled away from me and I was pretty much all alone cruising down the other side of the hill. I started singing “10,000 reasons” as I rode, out loud. I was re-entering the city, the officials car pulled up beside me and informed me I had missed a turn. So they escorted me back to the course. After following the course a while further I noticed that I was only seeing white arrows. I noticed that they were behind me again and stopped. I reminded them that I was doing the METRIC… the 62 miler! Oh, they had seen the white bib, and had heard me wrong. They told me how to get back to the Metric course….. but I had already put in a number of extra miles.
The course was easy to follow from there up the 2nd larger hill to the first station, now MORE than 20 miles into the ride… but I had plenty of water to get there. At the first station I refilled both bottles with sports drink. I followed the same as last year to the 2nd aide station just past 30 miles.
The next surprise was just after the 2nd aide station. Last year I remember making a left turn and then heading down the highway for awhile before making a right turn toward the 3rd hill, the biggest on the course. At that left turn corner, the orange arrow pointed straight ahead. We went through an old town area and missed a couple of arrows, but I had the turn sheet and found my way through.
Now I was headed up a road that I recognized as the road I had come down last year. The road that had brought me down from the big hill. So, I figured they had reversed this section of the course. I had not seen anyone since the last station. The section I was on was ONLY for the Metric century riders – which was probably a minority of the riders. (They also offered a 50 miler -blue bibs – which seemed much more popular.) Still, the orange arrows were in place and I made my way up and over the big hill. As I sped down the other side I began to see riders… with blue AND orange bibs… I began to worry… were they gonna make me turn around and go BACK over the hill. My hope was that these were really blue bib riders.
And the end of the canyon road I expected a left turn to make the loop, but the arrow said right turn. This road, I knew was a side out and back that the century riders were going to use. Fortunately, a mile later there was an orange arrow pointed to the left and I was circling back into my “expected” direction.
But alas, the road turned again and I found myself heading back up the road to go back over the big hill. Once over the hill the course followed the path I remembered from last year. The hills never really let up. Once you get back over the hill and cross through town you are heading northeast, it is generally uphill all the way back to Simi Last year as I headed back up the valley with one little up and over side trip…. I was dying. Today, I was catching and passing 50 mile riders. Last year I was regularly being passed by Century riders coming back into town. This time I was one….
There were a couple of places where I knew I could take a short cut to make up for the extra miles I had put in early in the morning. But since I was still strong and felt like I was moving quickly. I stayed the course. When all was said and done I had ridden the GO 69.7 miles climbing 4950 feet… my new elevation PR, while averaging 13.0 miles per hour…. my fastest average on a 100k or longer ride. Looking at Strava – there were numerous segment PRs…. of course that just meant I was consistently faster than last year.
- Monday I rode the GO for 18 miles commuting and supervising XC practice.
- Tuesday I ran two of the Secret Weapon workouts with my Hillview runners. These intervals are going well. I have had some near PRs out there.
- Wednesday I rode the GO some more commuting and supervising.
- Thursday I got up EXTRA early to run with Karl…. well not just Karl but Karl and 4 of our fastest HDR lady runners: Heather, Veronica, Angie and Sylvia. We did a somewhat famous local run called the lobster run. Beginning and ending at Karl’s the one antenna is too large, but the map ends up looking kind of like an lobster.
- Each of the legs is a hill repeat. The length varies and the steepness varies. I had to really strive to keep up. I had to open my stride and push to make up some ground on the ladies on the downhill… It was 7 + miles of fun hard running…
- Friday was our first XC meet of the season. So I did not run. My girls won, the 7th grade boys squeeked by, and my 8th grade boys came in 2nd. Not a bad start. I’ll write more about them in a later post.