Thursday, June 9, 2011

Taste Test

We finally had a day over 90 degrees here yesterday (sorry about that, Pedal Pushers!) and I went over to the bike path to see how awful the first 10 minutes of the Hotter 'n Hell 100 would be.

I figure it will be closer to 100 degrees than 90 by the time I get to mile 10 during the race so this was really just a litmus test of things to come.

Since I've finally logged over 350 base miles this year, I started working on staying longer in harder gears to build up strength. Mindful that I'm not used to riding in the heat, I kept my heart rate under 75% max and would cruise along anywhere from 15 - 19 mph. I rode for a total of 34 miles and yeah, I was hot.

I was a little annoyed when I hit a bump in the road and had no idea that I lost my taillight. I had heard something clanging on the road so I stopped and checked my bag to see if my phone had fallen out. It would be a couple more miles before that dim light in my mind would brighten a bit and I would realize what had happened. Last I heard, rear reflectors are a legal requirement on all bikes in Massachusetts so I have to stop at the hardware store to pick one up.

I find it very annoying that in 90-degree weather, it would be a frost heave that would trip me up.

I am also getting the strangest tan lines from these rides. Even after lathering on sun protection with SPF 70, I'm still getting the classic farmer's tan. I have been getting out in the Noon sun just because that's when it's hottest and that is something I will have to contend with at the Hotter 'n Hell so I guess I'll be looking into sun sleeves next.

Nutrition-wise, I had a peanut butter AND jelly sandwich before I headed out for the path, used water for the first 8 miles, a Honey Stinger waffle and Mojo bar (aka "lunch") back at the car. The second time out, I went with a Nuun tablet in my water bottle and had an Apple/Cinnamon-flavored Carb-Boom gel at the turnaround. I usually pick up these gels and what-not on my way to the bike path so I try things I normally wouldn't look at twice.

Now, I don't know if these things are working but I have to say that last gel, after riding in my back pocket for 30 minutes tasted just like apple pie filling. It was tasty.

100 Miles of Nowhere Post-ride Note: After I came home with my arm covered in Sharpie hash marks, my husband came home the next day with a new battery for my bike computer.

1 comment:

  1. Things seem to be going along OK notwithstanding a lost reflector. Texas has the same law but starting in September we have to have a tail light for night riding.

    Congratulations on a new battery although marking your arm was ingenious. If your battery runs down at HHH, all you have to do is count 10 rest stops.

    The heat here has convinced me I need another piece of clothing--a sweat vac. Salt has gotten into my eyes the last 4-5 rides. Besides stinging, sometimes it runs down my glasses or sunglasses and interferes with vision.

    I have tried a sweat band but I look like a dork. With a "Sweat Vac" cap, maybe I will only look like a dork when I remove my helmet.

    If the weather conditions ever line up just right, practice in 90-103 degrees with a 15 mph head wind, and top it off with a 1-3% incline. You will have practiced for about 40 of the 100 miles. : )