Ojai Valley Century

What do you do the week after a marthon?How about a century ride?  If triathletes can do em the same day, I figure I can do them a week apart…. (hmmm, next week 2+ mile swim? I think not….)

Saturday was my 2nd training ride for the Sierra to the Sea ride. Clay and I got up early and drove to Ojai for my second attempt at the Ojai Valley Century…. I attempted this two years ago… but due to cramping issues I took a short cut and ended up with ‘only’ 75 miles.  With all my marathon training and running this year I have only ridden a few times,  but it turns out that running fitness transfers well onto the bike as proved at the Tour of Long Beach a few weeks ago.

So, off we went at 7:20 am. The course loops through Ojai, then makes its way to Lake Casitas. Next it goes over two passes and then down toward Carpenteria. 20 ish miles in there is a break at Carpenteria High School. From there it continues into Santa Barbara throwing a couple of good climbs in, just for cruelty’s sake before heading to the beach and back to the High School for rest stop #2. Next is one climb, a descent to the water and a flat ride on the waters edge into Ventura @60+ miles for lunch at rest stop #3 -yummy sandwiches. Leaving the rest stop we continued down the beach just a little farther and then made our way inland through Venture and on to Santa Paula… this section was gradually climbing but had some nice breaks with rolling downhills… by now my neck and ‘seat’ were quite tired of the riding position. I found myself up and out of the saddle pretending I was on my Elliptigo… standing and pedaling a few strokes at a time. In Santa Paula – 85 miles, we had rest stop #4 with popsicles! From Santa Paula we had about 12 miles of gradual and then not so gradual uphill up the highway back toward Ojai. My left knee was getting quite achy and as I crested the hill I really wanted to be finished.

I could hardly pedal.  Fortunately the next section was a long gradual downhill across a valley. There was a headwind so I had to pedal some, and I did not go fast but I continued onward… There was a short up before the big descent down into Ojai, and I had to stop halfway, but I made it…

Clay patiently stayed with me for 85 miles to the Santa Paula rest stop. Then he decided to race up the hill leaving me quite far behind. He finished, and then rode about 3 miles back to get me… Thanks Clay! We had a nice dinner at the finish line!

In total I rode 103.3 miles with 5028 feet of climbing… The average speed was 14.0 mph even after the very slow final 18… This was my longest and climbiest ride ever… click on the menu (waffle stack upper right corner) and select rides for comparisons…  Checking it out on Strava there were lots of PRs set compared to doing this ride 2 years ago….and I thought I was taking it easy!

Note regarding cramping issues…. around mile 60 I got a calf cramp whilst going through a steep dip… at lunch I took some Hyland’s cramp relief…. Hours later, I started to get an adductor cramp going up that last little hill before dropping into Ojai…. I took my other packet at that time…. cramps were otherwise not an issue, not even afterward!  #Hylandspowered

My knee felt much better after stopping the ride, there seems to be no residual effect. It felt great for the first 85… so I feel that I will be fine on the Sierra to the Sea ride where the daily ride totals are more like 50-60 most days….

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