Monday, July 23, 2007

85 Miles and Tired Knees

As they say in these parts: "Ufda."

The good folks at ACT held a supported training ride on Saturday, going from Middleton to Devil's Lake and back. 85 miles. I thought my knees were going to explode. I'm happy to report that they didn't, but I'll be investing in a brace for my left knee to compliment the one on my right knee, that's for sure.

We couldn't have asked for better weather for the ride, though. Sunny, in the 70's, light breeze all day. I can only hope and pray that we have similar conditions for the actual ride, but I won't hold my breath.

It was a beautiful route. Lots of country roads, small towns, rolling hills and roadkill (OK, so the roadkill wasn't terribly scenic, but there was a lot of it). Oh yeah, those hills. Yikes. I had to give up and walk a couple of them, but I suspect that it was the right move on my part. I'm not sure I would have finished if I had pushed myself much harder than I did. Makes me somewhat uneasy about the whole "this is the hilliest route they've ever planned for an ACT Ride" thing I've been hearing from people what knows things.

Makes me wish I had an even grannier gear on my bike. Spin spin spin.

I can't believe the ride is only two weeks away. Not even, really. I'm grateful, however, that I met the minimum fundraising goal and amazingly that I'm only $70 away from raising enough to warrant one of them fancy ACT V bike jerseys. Hurrah! So hey, if you've got any part of $70 lying around, feel free to donate. :)

What was especially nice about this training ride was the crew. It gave me a good taste of what the actual ride will be like in terms of support. Just having a few cars driving up and down the route, honking and checking in and generally being rowdy and supportive was a great help. The ice, water and snacks were lovely, too. Though I realized how entirely necessary the massage therapists are going to be, as well. Boy howdy am I gonna hit that up as much as possible.

So I can bike 85 miles. Even though I was pretty well wrecked that night, it's good to know. The century day still freaks me the crap out, but I'll deal with that when it comes along. For now, I'm going to focus on more training rides (perhaps not quite as long) and raising that final $70. I have to admit, it'll be a relief when this is all over and I can go back to concentrating on the rest of my life. But this has been a mighty fine challenge, a real butt-kicker, and I'm happy as a clam to be participating.

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