Excellent 102 mile training ride yesterday with Chris and Sebastian!
This past Wednesday I decided that I was going to do a 100 mile training ride on Friday morning. While I would have done the century solo if I had to, I was really hoping to get a small group of strong riders who wanted to do the ride with me. I put the call out on the JSF Forums (in the Central Florida Cyclists forum – create a free account and hit me up if you’re a local cyclist and want access), on Facebook and on Strava.
I was very happy when Sebastian Zaldibar and Christopher Garcia said they were going to join me!
Sebastian and I have done several rides together, including the 167 mile 2014 Cross-Florida ride, the 2014 Mount Dora Bike Festival century, the 2014 Seminole Cyclefest and, most recently, the 2015 Orange Cycle New Year’s Day ride.
Christopher and I rode together at the fast and rainy “Apopka Hammerheads” ride, which is a small local group ride for people who like to ride fast that I am attempting to get off the ground.
I knew both these guys would be up for a hard training ride, and was stoked that they were in.
The route I planned was a little over 100 miles with about 3,000 feet of vertical–very similar to the 2014 Mount Dora Bike Festival century route. According to the professional weather guessers we would have to deal with some headwinds during the first part of the ride, but were expecting a nice tailwind on the return trip. Unfortunately, things didn’t work out that way…
The winds were fairly light as we made the journey north. We were averaging close to 22 MPH, and feeling great. We were all in agreement to only make 2 SAG stops, and to keep them short. Here we are at the first of the SAG stops, about 42 miles in:
The wind picked up quite a bit as we started the return trip, but they were not NNW winds (which is what we were expecting): the winds were strong, and straight out of the west. So, instead of a nice boost during the second half of the ride, we were fighting a stiff headwind or crosswind almost the entire way (the non-shaded area, below). In fact, if you look at the map below there were only a couple of very short ~1 mile sections of road (circled in green) where we hand the wind at our backs:
We all did our time out front, and went to war with the wind in order to keep our average above 21 MPH. It was a fantastic training ride and, while hard, it was also very enjoyable thanks to the great company and strong riding. Sebastian and Christopher, thanks for coming out!
When we finished the 102.2 mile ride our ride average was 21.2 MPH, but for some reason Strava showed my ride average as 21.0 MPH. That was pretty annoying, as Golden Cheetah showed my ride average as 21.2 MPH, which is correct. I know Strava uses their own algorithm to determine moving time, and when I examined the data it became clear that Strava counted time when I was obviously stopped towards my moving time (which threw off my ride average). I know .2 MPH doesn’t sound like much, but I worked hard for that 21.2 MPH average! I’ve opened a support ticket with Strava, mostly for my own edification. Perhaps they can fix the error, but I’m also hoping they can tell me how this happened and if it can be avoided somehow. I’ll post the any useful information they provide in a future blog.
On a personal note, I felt awesome yesterday! In fact, yesterday’s ride was the best I’ve felt on my bike since my cut started 4 weeks ago. Not only did I have ample energy and strength, I felt extra strong the whole way. As noted above as a caption to my picture, I did not require much in the way of intra-ride nutrition. Not only that, I didn’t even need extra pre- or post-ride calories to feel satiated.
This morning I feel great, and my legs don’t even feel tired. I’m still going to do a recovery ride today, as that was a very high TSS (Training Stress Score) ride.
Back tomorrow with my weekly cutting progress report. Enjoy your Saturday!