One of the best things about my new job is having Fridays off. I really have not taken too much advantage of the day to ride yet, until this past Friday. I was hoping to recruit someone to ride with me, but alas, no one was able to join me. So I took off at 6 am Friday to ride the 200k that goes through Pelahatchie, Morton, Puckett, back to Pelahatchie, Goshen Springs and then home via the Natchez Trace.
This was not a day to blog about! My legs were tired all day and I did not have any power. Without anyone to ride with it was up to me to push myself, and I just did not feel like pushing today. I was also double checking my cue sheet. I have a fellow from New Jersey coming down to ride it on February first to complete his 2nd R-12. I was pretty sure it was a good cue sheet as Pat and a guy from Missouri had both ridden it without me. However, the Trace officals have built a fence blocking our access to the entry point we have historicaly used. So, I need to revise the cue sheet to include the new entrance and exit points.
The day itself was priceless. The morning was cooler than I expected and I was on the cold side of comfortable. I did not bring gloves and my feet were cold - colder than any of my last rides in colder temperatures. However, the temperature warmed throughout the day and I was in heaven. The sky was brilliant blue and the winds were light and comfortable. Even though my legs were burning most of the day I was having a blast being outside in warm weather.
My only mistake was my clothing choices. I wanted to look good and still be comfortable. One thing I hate is taking your base layer off when you get warm. The base layer is very important and in the winter, you have to have it. My silk layer has been the best so far, but when I get hot, I have to take off my over shirt and my base layer and replace the over shirt. So basically, I strip to my sports bra and redress. So to combat that I put on a short sleeve jersey as my base layer and a long sleeve jersey on top. Wrong! The jersey did not act as a base layer or the long sleeve jersey trapped the heat in and did not allow it to be wicked. So I was sweating under my jacket. That made me feel colder than I would have otherwise. Eventually I ended up in my base layer jersey and arm warmers.
The ride was very uneventful until the final 3 miles. I was just crossing Brashier Creek Bridge when two pick ups passed me. I hear a loud fire cracker pop. My first thought was that one of the guys in the pick ups threw a fire cracker at me. My second thought was, Crap, I knew I should have changed my tire before the ride last night! I have been riding my trainer 3-4 times a week and the trainer burns the rubber and flattens the tire. I had worn that tire down to the point that the tube must have started poking threw the treads and when it finally burst it blew a hole in the tire. So, 3 miles from the house, I can call David or fix my flat and boot my tire. So, to get credit for the ride I changed my tire. I had never booted a tire before so I wasn't sure how it really worked, but I put a dollar bill between the hole in the tire and the tube and pumped up the tire. The whole thing took 20 minutes. Not bad - not great, but not bad.
The results of the ride were not great. I only averaged 13.6 mph over 125 miles. My total time was 11 hrs and 41 min. Ride time was 9 hr and 18 min. Oh well, I had fun riding in beautiful weather. The only thing that would have made this ride better would have been riding it with friends!