Around and around we go

To be honest, I’m not feeling like blogging right now. I’m pretty tired from my ride yesterday. Probably should have done a better job staying fueled and now I’m paying for it.

Explaining the lap function to Thing Two (

The day was beautiful as Thing Two and I mounted our bikes to ride over to campus. Once we got there we found most of our mates getting their bikes ready for the five hour event. Just around noon we came together for the start.

Some of the most fun of the day was watching the youngsters who were joining us. Because we were riding a .85 mile circuit, it was possible to come across the elementary and middle school aged riders as we moved through the day.

Little Caroline Hartzler on her way to 56 miles!

That means I had plenty of opportunities to ride with Thing Two around the course. Earlier in the week we went out and rode the Swamp Rabbit Trail for a total of 20 miles or so. This would end up being his longest ride.

Doing laps with Thing Two

It did cause me a bit of an issue. I had a goal of 80 miles for the five hour ride. The plan was to stay with Jonathan Jr. for the early part of the ride as he worked for his goal of 30 miles. This meant I would ride along easy and then I would push it hard for several laps to try to increase my average. This was repeated for about 40 miles.

Thing Three also showed up to do a few laps with us. He would take a lap and then take a break to enjoy the atmosphere around the “start/finish” line. Seeing his intensity when he was out there put a smile on my face!

Photo by Hal Cook

Thing Three makes some laps

Three hours in and Jonathan had 41 miles. It was about that time the clouds we saw forming on the other side of Paris Mountain arrived. Now, a little rain isn’t enough to stop a ride, but when you can see the lightening bolts hitting around you it is time to take shelter.

I told Jonathan that as soon as we started feeling rain drops to head for home. Not knowing how long the storm would last, I didn’t want him having to hand around and wait. So, he started for home as the first drops began to fall.

I did one more lap and was riding in fear as the lightening bolts were flashing about the same time I was hearing them! That means things were really close. Just as I pulled in for cover the rain started to pour.

Photo by Hal Cook

Jonathan brings it home (Photo by Hal Cook)

I was very proud of my guy. I felt kind of bad that I sent him home when I did because the storm passed and I’m sure he could have picked up 10 or more miles to his total. He showed some grit. Having never ridden that far before he was feeling it in his legs… and in his seat!

For me, it was time to put the hammer down. Some of the riders were going to ride past 5 PM so they would get in the full five hours. I had to get home for an evening event, so I needed to get the pace up if I planned to reach my goal.

As my clock showed 5:01 PM when the distance on my computer reached 80 miles. There was a bit more distance before I reached the finish and the final tally reached 80.5 miles. That night sitting in the audience watching a three hour opera, I started to feel all 80 miles — especially those last 20!