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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    San Francisco Bay Area
    Posts
    9,351

    The voices in my head...

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    Yesterday I rode my 8th 200K and somehow I finished. Yeah, determined that's me.

    The weather forecast was for showers. I decided I was going to ride Fluffy, my Rambouillet, even though he hasn't been out for a long ride in a long time. He's my commute bike so he has the generator hub and light and a rack. Those are all necessary things when riding a 200 K in the rain.

    Thursday Thom and I put his fenders back on so he was all ready. I checked again on Friday that both wheels were rolling smoothly through the brakes since the fenders attach at the brake mount. I hate messing with my brakes.

    The ride began and I was tooling along. The bike seemed a lot heavier than LT (my Legolas) and I could feel the the whizzing of the generator hub through the handlebars.

    Around about mile ten my legs were beginning to feel fried. I started wondering if maybe I've been doing too much. I raced last weekend, I did a 200K two weeks ago... Maybe I'm coming done with something... Maybe it's the bike... maybe I haven't been riding enough... Fluffy is heavy.

    Soon, I was the last rider on the road. I'm never the first rider. But I've never been the last rider either. This was very demoralizing and I was not even at the first checkpoint at mile 23.

    At this point the mental voice kicks in. This is what determination sounds like. "You're doing okay. Yeah, your legs are fried, but your average speed is good enough that you can finish in the time allowed. It doesn't matter where you finish. Getting there is all that counts. Just keep pedaling. Rest on those downhills. You can do this. This ride is about you and no one else. Just GET to the finish."

    This voice talks to me a lot. The whiny voice chimes in every now then, reminding me that I am LAST, how much my legs hurt and that I'm not going to make my goal of a sub ten hour ride. Finally around mile 40, the whiny voice convinced me that I needed a little more moral support. I pulled over and gave Thom a call. I was leaning against the bike as the phone was ringing and I heard this funny little squeak from my rear wheel.

    Thom answered. I said something like, "I'm DFL, my legs have no power, I can't get the bike to 15 miles an hour, but I think maybe I have brake rub. I love you. See ya." Click.

    Yeah, 40 miles of brake rub - not a little brake rub. Severe brake rub. I released the brake quick release and that barely got the brake off the wheel.

    85 miles to go and I'm already pretty fried. But just being tired is not a good enough reason to quit. I soldier on. Catching up to Jo and Mel at the checkpoints, hanging on to their little train with Andrew for a few miles and then falling off the back. The determined voice keeps cheering me on. The whiny voice is pretty quiet, even over Cardiac Hill. Until we have about 30 miles to go and the leftover wind from the storm began to hit me as we neared the coast again. That really sucked! But come on - it's only 30 miles. I began to think about just getting to the next turn. The miles slowly rolled by, turn by turn. I knew once we crossed back over the Carquinez Strait I'd have only three small hills and I'd be done.

    I was so happy to get off my bike and so wasted. I think this ride hurt more than any of the 6 double centuries I've done, more than my Half Ironman. Thom thinks we didn't tighten down the rear brake enough and it shifted in the car on the way over. We can't put bikes with fenders on our roof rack, so it has to lie on its side in the car. We have plans to buy a Sprinter van. I think we need to accelerate that plan.

    Happily, Fluffy still fits me just fine, no weird aches or pains from bike fit. And number 8 is done. Just 4 more to go.

    Veronica
    Discipline is remembering what you want.


    TandemHearts.com

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    4,556
    Wow, V - you're made of some tough stuff! Congratulations on finishing!!

    CA
    Most days in life don't stand out, But life's about those days that will...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    where the wind comes sweeping down the plain
    Posts
    5,269
    Holy cow, V! You're tough, girl, real tough. I'm impressed at your ride, and that the voices in your head kept talking positive to keep you going. I'm really proud of you. I don't think I would've had it in me to keep going- but you did and finished strong. Congrats!
    Check out my running blog: www.turtlepacing.blogspot.com

    Cervelo P2C (tri bike)
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    1983 Motobecane mixte (commuter/errand bike)
    Cannondale F5 mountain bike

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Vernon, British Columbia
    Posts
    2,226
    V, you rock, girl! Way to go!!

    I'm at home trying to shake off the tail end of a feverish bug...my rational voice telling me I should not ride, my determined (or is that obsessed?) voice telling me it's okay to go on an easy ride. So, yes, I'm familiar with the voices, too..... Thank you for letting me know those voices are normal!

    Hugs and butterflies,
    ~T~
    The butterflies are within you.

    My photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/picsiechick/

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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Folsom CA
    Posts
    5,672
    Quote Originally Posted by Veronica View Post
    But just being tired is not a good enough reason to quit.
    Says you, love.

    But we're made of entirely different stuff. I'm glad you hung in there.

    2009 Lynskey R230 Houseblend - Brooks Team Pro
    2007 Rivendell Bleriot - Rivet Pearl

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts
    5,318

    cool

    V..you're one amazing woman!

    Actually, you SF ladies are amazing in general

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    around Seattle, WA
    Posts
    3,250
    V - Wow!

    I'm still stuck on "only 30 miles" left in your ride after doing 85! My wimpy bod is in awe.
    Beth

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    WA, Australia
    Posts
    3,292
    As always V an inspiring ride report.
    Next time I feel tired on one of my piddly rides I will think of you.
    The most effective way to do it, is to do it.
    Amelia Earhart

    2005 Trek 5000 road/Avocet 02 40W
    2006 Colnago C50 road/SSM Atola
    2005 SC Juliana SL mtb/WTB Laser V

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Rhode Island
    Posts
    1,365
    I had a commute with about 15 miles of severe brake rub recently and those fifteen miles made me cry. When I stopped and checked it, the tire wouldn't even move unless pressed hard. It sucks when you find that out, eh? The screw that holds the caliper in place was loose, and the cable was pushing the brake over.

    So, I admire your fortitude. You kicked ash!
    I can do five more miles.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    1,318
    Quote Originally Posted by bmccasland View Post
    V - Wow!

    I'm still stuck on "only 30 miles" left in your ride after doing 85! My wimpy bod is in awe.
    I was thinking the same thing! You're a total goddess, V.

    I just did my first 25 miles on Sunday and my knees are stilling fussing at me. The rest of me feels great, though. Maybe in a year or so I'll be up to a century, but a double century? All in one day? Wow. I don't even know how far 200km is. Ha!

    Roxy

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    San Francisco Bay Area
    Posts
    9,351
    200 K is about 125 miles.

    Veronica
    Discipline is remembering what you want.


    TandemHearts.com

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Riding my Luna & Rivendell in the Hudson Valley, NY
    Posts
    8,409
    Amazing ride report- wonderfully inspiring.
    Lisa
    Our bikes...OurBikes...and my mountain dulcimer blog
    Ruby's Website and My blog
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  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Beautiful NW or Left Coast
    Posts
    5,645
    yum. i love brake rub (not!)

    been there. It can really mess with your head.
    I like Bikes - Mimi
    Watercolor Blog

    Davidson Custom Bike - Cavaletta
    Dahon 2009 Sport - Luna
    Old Raleigh Mixte - Mitzi

 

 

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