I was very excited to get my chance to complete this ride. Even more excited was my wife. She normally drives SAG and comes to rescue my tail when I have breakdowns (snapped spokes, chain stays, etc). SAG this time would consist of putting her head out the door every once in a while to see if I needed anything.
I read through previous years MONs from other riders and their potential thoughts for this year. I’m a road only rider and wanted to stay within the spirit of “no-where” and figured that going around the block would fulfill that requirement. It’s .3 of a mile and has about a 12’ rise. I knew that outside of brain draining boredom getting a solid rhythm with 90 degree turn every 15 seconds was going to make that a challenge.
Also adding to the fun; I was sick for about a week prior to the ride and had less than 50 miles riding over the last two weeks. Conversations about my pooping habits aside, I came into this event further behind than I wanted. I didn’t expect to ever be super-fast, but I was very worried about losing the “Crazy dads in Everett” category now.
The morning of the ride I had thought to be on the bike by 6 and instead took a little extra sleep. At precisely 6:50am I clipped in and I was off! At precisely 6:51 I finished my first lap, still drinking my coffee and settled in for a long day (not Elden-long, just long for me).
My bike computer and phone were at war with each other, showing small discrepancies on feet ascended and distance travelled, but taking an average after the first 10 laps, I figured that I had about another 325 in front of me.
In my neighborhood, I viewed as that “weird guy who rides a bike” and didn’t think my neighbors would think much of it. No one said anything, but I did get some looks. At one point I had a nice little peloton with me. Two neighbor kids and my middle son all riding around with me; I would do a lap at their pace and then keep going as best as I could.
My cheering squad
The hardest part was the lure of the house and the want to get that one thing (it’ll only take a second). So I created a schedule (I had lots of time). I would only stop every 25 miles and only as long as I didn’t impede myself on my imposed 6 hour time limit. This tactic worked well and I finish in 5 hours 59 minutes and 34 seconds – yes I cut it close.
Even better, I was off the bike for only about half an hour. With potties, water, snacks and all the rest of the amenities the house offered I could have easily spent an hour mucking around.
The last ten miles of any century are hard for me. I can see the end and I’m tired and figure to just sit up and coast the last bit. Normally I get over that by pushing hard for the end. That works when there is varying terrain, but didn’t work in this case, I suspect because I had already covered the terrain 300 times, so my last 10 miles are probably my slowest.
I had checking on by my SAG and cheering selection and while it was a close race I not only took a new KOM (1 of 1 rider), set second and third personal bests but I believe I also podiumed in the “Crazy dads in Everett” category.
Thanks for the opportunity to do the 100 MON and all of the great sponsors (Honey Stingers, new food on bike), now all I have to do is figure out where I’m riding next year!