Woke up before dawn, ugh so gross but I did it. Turns out I didn’t need as much as I thought I did, for instance I ended up not changing at all because it stayed nice and cool out the whole time (60-70s °F). I also didn’t need as much food or water but was glad to have it just in case. The ride from my house was a little bit longer then thought, adding over a mile to my total distance completed.
When I got to my ‘start line’ I had already biked 4.5 miles.
The first loop was pretty great.
Noticeable soreness in my hands and wrists from the bumpy trail = normal. Nothing a little stretching and shaking out couldn’t handle. I was able to bike out ~15 miles instead of the initial 3 I originally thought I was limited to, which was a great surprise.
Got into some mud! The further out I went on the trail the more muddy, rocky it got. I traveled out another few miles before making a U-Turn back.
I hit 25 miles (quarter century ride) in under 2 hours (3 hours is the given time limit).
Based on the time of day I had been pacing at ~13 MPH. Luckily the trail out this way was pretty flat with rolling subtle hills if at all.
Not much traffic apart from the occasional runner or fellow biker and the gaggles of geese making it great conditions for speed.
Break time! Felt really good at this point, only took a 10-15 min break and decided to eat, drink and take some pics but not change clothes.
Break time over!
Back on the trail, heading in the other direction.
At the start of my break I had been biking for a little more then 2.5 hours.
Made great timing on the other end of the trail since it was shorter; could only bike out a little over 3 miles before having to turn around and head back. This part of the trail was paved with little finely crushed gravel or compact dirt so I was able to pick up speed to ~15 MPH. This loop took me ~24 min to bike, which brought me to ~3 hrs by mile 36-37. It was at this point that it started drizzling.
Around mile 50 and beyond was about where I started to feel soreness in my neck and quads in addition to my hands and wrists from before. Overall still felt good enough to press on after some stretching and shaking out the upper limbs. I slowed up some the closer to 50 miles I got but maintained some of that momentum from earlier. At this point I had been riding for roughly 4 hours and still had another dozen miles left to complete my goal plus another 4.5 to get home. I’m inside the home stretch. Since I did 50 miles in less then the allotted 6 hour time frame, it totally counts.
I freaking did it!!! The remaining 12 miles were pretty intense but I finished the trail ride of ~62 miles in just under 5 hours and I finished strong. I was so glad to head home for a much needed shower. Again since it stayed pretty cool out and had only rain a little I saw no need to change before heading home. Less laundry yay!
The ride home wasn’t too bad, all flat until I reached the end of my street. I don’t have a GPS watch at the moment so I had to manually log the miles in mapmyride afterward.
Less than 30 miles to go for me to complete a full century ride.
For my ultra marathon I’ll probably run the trail heading eastward, out & back then another mile westward for 31 miles. It would be better and probably smarter to do this with a crew but it is doable solo. I’d need to set up a ‘base camp’ at the starting line & have some drop off/ fuel stations strategically placed along my route. My camel pack was full with water & food for the ride but for the run I’d only carry essentials for maybe the first 10-15 miles.
Trails involved during ride: The GAP Trail (150 mile rail trail -> 335 mile long trail experience), the Three Rivers Heritage Trail (25 miles long), and the North Shore Trail (6 miles long) – Chateau Trail (most westward trail)