Feeling strong, anticipating a solid Horrible Hundred tomorrow
The 36th annual Horrible Hundred is tomorrow, and I’m very excited about it.
The Horrible Hundred is, as the name suggests, a 100 mile ride that has more than 5,000 feet of vertical. This will be the third year I’ve done this event (I didn’t start road riding until late 2012), and I’m expecting to put in my best performance to date.
The first year I did this ride (2013) I was an inexperienced roadie, and got caught in no man’s land (alone). I wound up doing most the ride solo, and suffered mightily. My ride average reflected my lack of conditioning, my lack of roadie experience and the fact that I was riding solo: 17.9 MPH. My average heart rate was 165 BPM for 05:35:42. That earned me an “Epic” Suffer Score of 357. Here is my 2013 ride report.
Last year I was much more prepared for the ride, and a much stronger cyclist than I was in 2013. I was with the lead group averaging more than 22 MPH until I flatted at mile 55. I was super bummed about the flat, but after fixing the flat I was lucky enough to get back in with a small group that came by, which included my friend Hector. I wound up finishing the 2014 century with a 21.2 MPH average–certainly a nice improvement over 2013, but still below my expectations. Here is my 2014 ride report.
This year I’m anticipating my strongest Horrible Hundred performance yet. I’m in excellent condition, my weight is down (159.4 pounds as of this morning), I’ve been feeling very strong on the bike, I’ve got another year of experience under my belt, and the weather is finally going to be cool and fall-like! The cool weather is really going to help, and should allow us (I’m riding with some of my KBS teammates) to complete the entire ride without any SAG/rest stops. As long as we don’t have any unlucky mechanical issues or other mishaps, I think we’re going to crush it tomorrow.
The route this year is a little different than last year’s route. It’s got a few more hills, and should get us a bit more elevation. Here’s the 2015 route and elevation profile:
If you’re interested in learning about the route alterations, here’s a great video from James (Blue Hammers):
The funny thing is the Horrible Hundred–which is widely regarded as the hilliest organized ride in Central Florida–is not as tough as the lesser-known “Sugar 8 Challenge” ride, which I did earlier this month (here’s my Sugar 8 ride report). The Sugar 8 ride may be a little shorter than the Horrible Hundred (87 miles), but it contains 7,000 feet of vertical with a total of eight trips up Sugarloaf Mountain (we only have to do Sugarloaf once in the HH). Added to that, it was extremely hot for the Sugar 8 ride, so the HH is going to feel considerably less difficult by comparison. The Horrible Hundred is a blast, but if you’re looking for a local ride that’s even more challenging, definitely check out Sugar 8 next November.