As I was shopping yesterday morning the sun was shining and I was looking forward to my first 50 mile ride of the year. It was going to be a little bit of a test, 2,000ft of climbing over a distance I hadn’t tackled since the Prudential Ride 100 back in August 2015 but I was confident after doing 37 miles last Sunday with no issues.
As I set off it was a little chilly but still pretty warm but 10 miles in it was getting cold. I had also forgot my mini pump so when the rain started a further 2 miles down the road I was beginning to think about abandoning but seen as though that would be failure I plodded on, praying to the puncture Gods that I would not get one.
Everything was going swimmingly up to the climb. It was a good test, 0.8 miles (1.3km) at an average of 9% which I slowly chugged up. The HR data from my Garmin Vivosmart HR went mental, think it was because of my wrist being sweaty which was a pain but apart from that I was happy.
It was cold up there, and my legs felt it. I was about 30 miles in at this point and the dreaded thigh cramps started. I couldn’t put any power down or my legs would fully cramp. This was not good. I struggled on for another 10 miles and ended up in Stamford Bridge where I had a nice coffee and tried to warm up. The last 10 miles were hell. I eventually arrived home and dived straight into the shower to warm my poor legs up.
Note to self (and others) – if you are going on a long ride and it’s cold and you are out of shape ALWAYS overdress, never underdress!
Anyway, lesson learned, 52 miles under stress in the legs so all things considered I’m happy with that. I’m also happy with my average speed being 15.2mph with that climbing and the fact I couldn’t push at all in the final 20. Think my fitness is alright for March and now once my house move is done I can take advantage of living close to the Yorkshire Dales and get even fitter for Ride 100 2016.
Oh, and always pack your mini pump.