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Memorial Day Ride to Sweet Sue’s

by on May 28, 2012

It is a tradition around these here parts and around the Severna Park Peloton to travel to Sweet Sue’s Bakery in North Beach the holidays of summer (unless we go somewhere else).  There are two different starting points.  Start one begins in Shipley’s neighborhood and leaves at 6:30 am.  Start two begins at 7:30 am at the Davidsonville Park & Ride Lot, about 15 miles from Shipley’s.  Get it?  If you start early, your ride is 30 miles longer than if you start at the Park & Ride.  Eleven of us started at Shipley’s and had a good and relatively easy ride to Davidsonville.  Temperatures were pleasant, and there were partly cloudy skies to keep the strength of the sun down.

When we arrived at the Park & Ride, we were pleased to see that our numbers would more than double.  We pushed off in great spirits and it was as fun as ever to be riding in a group of nearly 30 riders.  We made short work of the 30 miles to Sweet Sue’s.  Clint called about 30 minutes out to warn them of our approach.  They were ready for us.  A breakfast sandwich and two strawberry smoothies were what I ordered.  I drink half of one of the smoothies to cool down and suck down the carbs.  The rest I use to fill an insulated water bottle for the next hour or so of riding.  It stays pretty cold.  We encountered quite a number of other riders either solo or in groups descending on Sweet Sue’s.  SPP was by far the larger group.

As we pushed off for home, the temperatures were climbing and the clouds had disappeared.  There were at least two distinct groups that formed, a fast group and a faster group.  I started in the faster group and we pushed the miles behind us pretty quickly.  After about an hour, the heat was getting to me and I could tell that I was dehydrating despite my best efforts to remain hydrated.  I just didn’t drink enough water on the way to Sweet Sue’s and it caught up to me.  My heart rate spiked to around 160-165 and it was tough to bring it down unless I traveled at around 14 mph.  I’m glad I knew the route.  I knew that the Citgo in Harwood was close, and I informed my two companions that now formed the small group between the fast and the fastest groups that I was stopping.  I used the toilet (good sign) and bought a bottle of water.  I re-filled my now empty bottles on the bike and poured about a liter of ice cold water on my head in a steady stream for about 20 seconds.  That felt absolutely wonderful!  It also did the trick.  I was able to pick up the pace, and it was a good thing too, because the fast group passed by as I was dumping water on my head and I was able to lead the group of three of us and catch this group.  Over the next several miles, individual riders within this group suddenly discovered our presence and wondered where we had come from.  Last they knew they were behind us and they knew they hadn’t passed us.

Temperatures continued to climb.  It was all I could do to keep dehydration at bay and nutrition up enough to keep a decent pace.  I lagged a couple of times, made the right adjustment, and recovered.  It is here where experience pays off and I don’t get into a  full bonk that takes 20-30 minutes or more to recover.  I’m able to recover on the bike.

Soon we were saying goodbye to those who were finishing the shorter ride (63 miles) and now 9 of us were pushing off for home.  Why is it that those last 15 miles seem to be twice that long?  Alex M flatted just before Veteran’s Highway.  Mike C, Ravi, and Clint stayed back to assist, while 4 others pressed on.  When I got to the B&A Trail for the last 1.5 miles home, I was surprised at how full it was with runners and bikers (most of whom were not wearing helmets … just saying!).

Once home, the cool down took close to an hour before I felt like I was done sweating.  I consumed a glass of chocolate milk, several glasses of water, had two fans on me, and used a zip lock bag full of ice water on my head and neck.  Ahh, that felt good.

Bag O ice water on the head. That’ll cool me down!

I did take some video of parts of the ride.  You can see the video here.

This Ride: 90.5 miles
Month: 743.3 miles
2012: 2341.1 miles
Total since 1/1/2010: 16,194.7 miles


From → Cycling

One Comment
  1. Yesterday was definitely a scorcher and the redness of your face definitely confirms it! Glad to see you battled off heat injury and finished in good form.

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