Yesterday was a special day in that I joined a ride to help raise money for the fight against diabetes. This hits close to home as my mom has lived with diabetes since her 20’s. Additionally, my father is now dealing with early stages of diabetes as well as others in my family and my wife’s family. The ride was set up to raise money for research to help combat this disease. There were several options: 16 miles, 32 miles, and the 100 KM or 62 mile option. Additionally, there was a chance to convert the 100K option to 100 Miles by completing 25 laps of the Texas Motor Speedway. I selected the 62 mile option with the hopes of making this my first century ride.
Here I am getting ready for the ride. I arrived at the Texas Motor Speedway at 6:00 AM with a 7:00 AM start time.
I have also included a few images of others getting ready in the staging area. Everyone was looking ready to take on the next 62 miles.
The ride started after singing the national anthem and was led out of TMS by the Red Riders (those riders riding with diabetes). We started with one lap of TMS then out to the countryside for our ride. The temperature at the start was 81 degrees, overcast and humid. At the end, it was 95, still overcast but sun burning through and still humid.
This field of flowers was speaking to me as I was peddling past just begging for a photo. I am glad this was not a race as I just had to pull over and take this picture. This is what you see when you take the time to ride through the country on a bike.
I was riding this solo in that I was not part of a group on this ride. This is my first solo ride of this length so it was a real test for me. I must say that it is much more fun to ride in a social group but this is what it would be like if I was doing a half-iron man ride as drafting is not allowed. It is so much harder solo than in a group. I felt strong and made good time in the first half. Here I am at the 31 mile turn around point.
There was a head wind on part of the return ride as well as a long Texas hill which made it a bit more of a pull going back. I was well hydrated with water and supplemental electrolytes. However, I did switch to Gatorade. I never really liked the stuff and I will stick to my electrolyte supplements in the future. Additionally, I think I needed to increase my caloric intake. I started the day with a nice bowl of oatmeal mixed with brown sugar and a Boost Drink. During the ride, I was taking in about 300 Kcals every hour which put me in a deficit by the end. I burned nearly 3000 Kcals in the 4.5 hour ride.
Here I am at the end of 70 miles. Feeling tired, lacking motivation to continue the solo laps and starting to feel nauseous, I pulled the plug on the 100 mile conversion so it looks like my first century ride will have to wait a little longer. While defeated in the 100 mile ride, I am very happy with my first solo ride of nearly 70 miles and look forward to my next riding challenge which will be a group ride of 100 miles at the Hotter than Hell ride in Wichita Falls at the end of August. I will have to work on my in ride fueling and really watch the hydration on that ride but I am looking forward to riding with my friends from Lifetime Garland Cycle Club.
So, the ride is finished for this year but I will be back next year to take on the challenge again. Here are the stats from this years attempt which will serve as a baseline for future rides Cycling 21.06.2014 06:50.