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No Guts – No Glory

by on June 15, 2010

This Ride: 21.9 mi
Kona Miles: 1488.7 mi
Month to date: 139.9 mi
2010 Total: 1955.2 mi

Late last night I decided to take the 5:45 group up on its suggestion that I ride “Terrible Tuesday” with them.  I emailed them to further commit myself to the ride.  Dave chimed in quickly with a little trash talk.

Day dawned with warm and humid conditions, but it was pretty.  I love this time of day.  I rode easy to the Rusty Bridge and then beyond, since I was about 5 minutes early.  Soon, Clint and Dave showed up (Clint in an aero helmet), and we shoved off.  I reset the lap counter on the Garmin as we launched as a way of discovering exactly what the group ride would show.  We picked up Chip along the way, so our peloton included 4 riders (most of the time).

We weren’t but a mile or two into the ride before the conversation turned to the death of a rider in a 1200 k ride.  He apparently died within 50-60 miles of the finish and was an experienced rider.  A heart attack is suspected.  That’s a little unnerving with what I was anticipating ahead.

We had a brisk pace, but comfortable, and I was toying with remaining on the trail while the rest did the hills in Round Bay.  Suddenly, I found myself on Old Country Road, headed for the hills.  I really don’t know how I made that turn.  I stayed with the group until the last hill.  Want to know where it is?  Look for the heart rate spike to 174 on the Garmin graphs.  After that effort, I was spent.  I had a hard time recovering and keeping up.  I couldn’t hang on the the peloton to the end of the trail, but they waited for me at the end.  I think I was 150-200 yards off the pace.

After the turn around, I lost the group again pretty quickly, but stayed within about 20-25 yards, occasionally reeling them back in (or them slowing down for a bit).  Where the 5:45 route turns off the trail onto B&A, I stayed on the trail while they took the small hills on the parallel road.  Quick glances showed me on pace with them, or slightly behind.  I maintained a minimum of 19 mph as much as I could on the trail, but a few intersections slowed me down so that when the other riders hit the trail, I was about 100 yards behind.  I did what I could to catch them, but they caught a break at Robinson Road and crossed it without having to slow for traffic.  I had to wait for vehicles.

In the end, they lingered long enough for me to catch up, for them to offer words of encouragement, and for me to turn off toward home.  I did do the loop as a way to add a few miles on to the end of the ride.  Drenched in sweat, with it running down my face like tears, I accomplished (most of) Terrible Tuesday.

I averaged 18.2 for the entire ride, with the 15 miles of the ride with the peloton averaging 18.8 mph.

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From → Cycling

One Comment
  1. That’s a tough program to keep up with Earl. Clint coached me early on that riding with stronger, faster riders makes you stronger and faster. That has certainly proved to be the case for me over the last 13 or so months I’ve been on the bike.

    I’m hopeful I’ll be there Friday.

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