Prior to this event I had been on my bike 2 times since last September. I rode a total of 43 miles. So I definitely wasn't in "bike shape." I hoped and prayed that training for a marathon and doing CrossFit was enough to get me through 150 miles on my bike. 150 miles is a LONG way, no matter what type of shape you're in.
Luckily I had George and Tracey by my side and I knew they'd help get me through. Tracey had barely logged more miles than I and George had ridden, but probably not as much as he would have liked.
As all of these rides go, I ride rest stop to rest stop. Meaning, I only focus on the miles ahead until the next rest stop. Usually each rest stop is about 12 to 15 miles apart. It's much easier to wrap my head around 15 miles and not 85. Yeah, did I mention that the first day was 85 miles of riding?
Once again, the Pella team was there to meet our every need. If you want to ride the MS150 (Escape to the Lake) then please consider jointing the Pella team. You won't regret it!
I remember looking down when I decided I wanted to be done riding and I was at mile 50. Seriously! 50 miles and 35 to go. That meant almost 3 more hours of riding. Ugh. It really wasn't the riding per se that was bothering me. It was my... um how to do I put this... my personal business and my shoulders and neck. Everything just hurt. I kept telling myself to push it to the back of my mind. I literally said out loud a few times "push the pain away, push the pain away." Hey it worked (that and 4 ibuprofen).
Somehow, someway, I made it 85 miles on day one. 6 hours 20 minutes and 41 seconds of riding. I was very happy to be finished.
|George at the end of Day 1|
That night the focus was FOOD and um FOOD. I barely got myself together enough to get out the door and eat. I was so hungry and would have eaten anything. I ate an impressive spread including a burger, salad, fruit, and a LOADED baked potato. Don't forget 2 desserts! We then hung out in the courtyard for a bit.
|George, Nate (Tracey's husband) and Jason (Nate's friend)|
I could not hold my eyes open. I prompted crashed in bed at 8:40 pm and am pretty sure I was asleep by 8:42. Good thing too because wake up was at 5:20 am to do it all again.
Day 2 was 65 miles (EASY PEASY). There were two significant hills one at mile 6 and one at mile 25. I just needed to make it through mile 25. It was downhill from there. I focused on that and again rode rest stop to rest stop.
At every stop I'd eat even if I didn't feel like I needed to. I mostly ate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and drank Gatorade. It did the trick. I never lost energy despite being tired (as in sleepy).
One thing was for certain, every bump hurt every part of my butt??? bone! Asses are not meant to sit on those tiny seats for so damn long!!!! That coupled with the rain that started at about mile 41 was enough to really put a damper on day 2. By the 55 mile rest stop, I was soaked and freezing. We had 10 miles to go and it couldn't be done fast enough.
Again, somehow, someway I made it 65 miles and completed the 2-day 150 mile adventure.
So many times throughout this adventure I thought of all the people affected by MS (especially my grandfather who is deceased and my friend Lissa). I thought about the pain they suffer(ed) every day and it really helped me focus on why I was out there. I was out there riding 150 miles to raise money and awareness for MS. I was riding to show my love and support my friend and out there riding for everyone who can't.
So yeah, I suffered, but not nearly what those affected by MS do. I'll continue to "suffer" every year for as long as I possibly can until we've created a world free of MS!!!