OK. We did it. Neither of us have ever done a century. I came close 23 years ago, but haven’t done anything close to that since. It took us just over 8 hours of riding, with a peppering of breaks in between. We rode the flattest, least windy place we could think of in San Diego: the jogging path around Lake Miramar.
The path is almost 5 miles around, so we did twenty laps starting at 5:45 in the morning. After a couple of laps, however, Randy’s GPS told us that the loop was not, in fact, 5 miles, but approximately 4.85 miles around so, on our last lap, we threw in some loops-de-loops and a little back-tracking so that we could finish the ride at the end of a lap.
Lake Miramar is noted for the waterfowl that think they own the place and large number of exercisers that use the lake on weekends.
From 5:45am to 8:30 or so, the ride was quite pleasant: cool and quiet. From 9am to 11am, the riding was hazardous. Runners think they own the road and run right in the middle, or even cut the corners. Bicyclists go way too fast. In-line skaters zigzag back and forth all over the place. Of course, the little kids on their bikes haven’t learned the rules of the road and wander unpredictably all over. We saw a fellow biker crash and probably break his collarbone around 11am. Fire rescue showed up to haul him away.
After lunch, the crowds dissipated but the wind picked up. We also had the pleasure of watching an amphibious car drive into the Lake, tool around for awhile, then drive right out.
That was pretty cool.
The last couple of laps were pretty hard on both of us. We ached everywhere despite the large dosed of Motrin that we both took as preventive medicine. Randy’s legs were bothering him. My wrists were killing me. My wife and son came out to welcome us across the finish line. They also rode a few laps with us. One of my neighbors came out and rode a few laps earlier in the day. At the end of the race, we toasted the event with Gatorade (Joe on left; Randy on right).
I got home around 5pm and collapsed right on the living room floor. It took everything I had to crawl into the shower before dinner. Yes, we will be doing this again next year! I should take the 50+ lycra category hands down.
– Joe F