Today was the Hot Hundred, The Hottest Ride in the South. Around 300 riders came out this morning to bike one of several distances. The most common question before 6:45 am this morning was probably, “how far are you riding?” I had originally thought I would ride the Sanders Ferry route that I have been riding with the bike club members. Last night I was looking at the map and decided if I could ride 29 miles, why couldn’t I ride 36 miles? This morning I decided I would see how I felt at the Sanders Ferry turn around and see if I wanted to take the next step to Dry Creek. I did. Dry Creek is short but it has the most difficult hill of the ride …right as you turn the corner onto Dry Creek. It flattens a bit and then there is another hill. I did not make it on my bike up both hills. I made it part way and had to walk with quite a few other people. On the second hill I dropped my chain so I had to stop and fix that. When I reached the turn to go back or to head onto the 52 mile section, I almost did it. I think if a few other people had been around I might have but I was by myself at that point. I’ll get there.
I have not been riding much this summer for many reasons so this week I was not really sure about riding today. I rode last Friday and a spoke broke on my back wheel. I had to have someone come and pick me up about 7 miles out from where my car was parked. I hadn’t had time to get my bike to VeloCity the first part of the week but I did get it in on Wednesday and they were able to fix it for me. The Hot Hundred is such a great ride. It is well organized and has fantastic support from members of the Druid City Bicycle Club and members of the community. It was really comforting to see Pixie drive by me several times while I was riding and knowing that if I did have a problem, she would be there to help me out or take me back. There are also great rest stops along the way. I only had one rest stop on my section of the ride but there was a group of friendly volunteers, food, water, medical help if you needed it. This isn’t a race so it really doesn’t matter how fast or slow you go or how long you stop to rest. (I know there are some people who like to ride fast and not stop, no matter what.)
I averaged about 15-18 mph on the flat sections of the ride (most of it). Dry Creek was much slower on the up hill sections but I got up to 19-20 mph on the down hill sections. I am still not entirely used to speed on my road bike. It is one of the things I need to work on more. I managed to ride up some smaller hills on highway 11 and the hills near the end of the ride in Country Club Estates and on Hackberry Lane on campus. I felt good about that today.
My sleep doctor, Dr. Snow, was also riding today. We started out together for a very few minutes. He rides much faster than I do. There were a lot of people I knew riding today but many of them are faster riders. I realized today that I really have only been riding since spring. I bought my first bike in the fall but didn’t get out on it much until early March. I bought the road bike in June and have only been out 4-5 times on it this summer.
I had a really good time today and I am glad that I pushed myself a little farther than I am used to riding. I knew I could do more, but now I have. Now I know the next section too and know where I need work. This is all a fantastic process and journey. I feel like I am moving onto the next leg of it. I can’t wait to see where I go next.