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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    119

    Thumbs up Washington MS 150

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    Anyone here doing the Greater Seattle MS 150 this weekend? I got talked into it (okay, more like grabbed the pamphlet out of my co-worker's hand and ran off to register) as part of a team from work..... now, I should admit that my road bike time has been somewhat limited, due to training for a fall marathon...... but running crosses over, right?

    The course is GORGEOUS, and the weather *should* hold (it is Seattle, after all). Will do a race report afterwards, if my butt isn't too sore to sit at the computer

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    119

    Talking When can I do this again? A whole year?

    I think I'm in love.


    Now, this is serious. I mean, I'm a runner. Of the long-distance kind. You know, long windy roads, hills, thoughtful thoughts..... oh. Perhaps that's it! I can have all these things.......at 25MPH!


    The Seattle MS 150 was last weekend- and quite a success! There were ~ 1200 riders, and over 1 MILLION $ raised. This was my very first organized ride, and truthfully, the longest I'd ever done by, oh, 100 miles?

    Saturday morning, 4AM: Alarm goes off. I think "what the bleep IS that? It can't be time to get up! It's still dark!" But, up I am, and coffee clutched desperately in my cold white fingers, I fire up my little car and rumble up I-5. LaConner is normally not that hard to find, but in the pissing rain and fog, I resorted to following any car that had a bike rack on it. Seemed like a good strategy- I mean, who else would be up at that hour?

    7 AM: Found my team, found the start line, found the porta-potty. Mental checklist- bike, CO2 inflator, check. Helmet, water, arm-warmers (whoever dreamed those up is my new hero), snacky snack, check. Shoes! Oh gawd, still in the car! Sprint back, change out of my runners (must have been the problem, I'm too used to wearing those when a race is about to start!), sprint back, focus. I realize that here and now, in a tightly packed crowd, is an interesting time to experiment with my new pedals (third time I've ever had clips. Or is it clipless? Whatever requires me to be attached.). Whatever. NOt worried, not worried, jeez. 75 miles is a LONG way!

    8AM: Gun goes off, we amble out of LaConner. No bike-clip/pedal casualties yet. Kinda cold and the road is wet, but at least the rain let up and it's looking to be a beautiful day. I experiment with being able to pull my water bottle out of the cage without disaster. Still kinda touchy on that one. Work on my straight-line skills. Play with bike computer. Impress myself with blazing speed.

    10 miles: What? Rest stop already? I was just getting warmed up! Although I am happy to have a brief respite from chip-seal pavement.

    ~17 miles: Gorgeous ride over long walking bridge over shallow bay- now THIS is more like it! I do not notice nasty mean oyster shells littered about, but the sheer number of crippled riders swearing at their flaccid bike tires should have clued me in.

    27 miles: What on earth is causing that wierd ka-THUMP ka-THUMP noise? And why is it suddenly hard to steer? Sigh. Dear little CO2 inflator, how I love thee. I compliment my tire for being so easy to take off the rim. Makes me look as if I'm experienced or something. I chuck nasty mean oyster shell bit off the side of the road after pulling it out of my tire.

    28 miles: Base of Mt Erie. Glad we're not climbing that road, although it is one of my very favorite views out over the San Juan islands. Cursed chip-seal pavement!

    30 miles: LUNCH! Oh food, how I love thee! I also thoroughly enjoy riding over the Deception Pass Bridge, although I do wonder if one crashed whether the wee railing would ever prevent a long dramatic plunge to the ocean below. Doubt it.

    40 miles: My new favorite-person is whoever invented Chamois buttr and put it in those little take-along packets. My legs feel great, but my wrists and butt are mildly peeved. I might want to switch out my stem, it seems like I'm extending a little too much.

    50 miles: Okay, the rolling hills have started with a fiery vengeance. I learn that the name of the game is constant cadence/ high RPM- much like running. Saves energy that way. I watch the more experienced riders to learn what they do- hand signals, riding distances, etc. Feeling quite comfy with the pedals and manage to keep quite a straight line for once.

    60 miles: Speedometer reads..... 35! HOLY C*!%! I try to relax and remind myself that we all die someday. This is the fastest I've ever traveled under my own power... yes, it's down a long hill. I note at just about the same time as my teammates that the posted speed limit is 25 approaching the corner. Congratulate myself for using the porta-potty at the last stop so I can't wet myself out of fear now. Much squeaking of brakes. We survive. .... and that was kinda.... fun?

    65 miles: Are. we. there. yet?

    66 miles: How about now?

    67 miles: and now?

    73 miles. Spot scenic town of LaConner. Much rejuvenated. Pedal harder- nothing happens. Speed constant. Sigh.

    74.8 miles: BEST! DAY! EVER! LOVE IT! LOOOOVE IT! Dismount bike like seasoned-clip/less pedal pro. Swagger off (ie fancy stiff-legged waddle). Search for promised "free beer". Intake food like a spring-time bear. Find my teammates. Shower. Repeat with the food and beer.

    There was quite a great evening program with speakers and a chance to meet other riders before turning in to my luxury down sleeping bag and tent posted in the far corner of the LaConner High school athletic field. AHhh, sweet sweet sleep.

    6:30 AM: WHAT IS THAT NOISE AND WHEN WILL IT STOP? Oh. Someone else's alarm. I suppose that means I should get up and prepare to repeat.


    Except that today has literally 1/3 the hill-age and I opt for the 50-mile ride so I'm mildly functional today at work. Great sunny weather, awesome volunteers. I consider switching primary sports from running to biking, one prime reason being the clothes. I mean, where else can you wear socks with monkeys on them? I finish my ride, go to dismount, and fall over at the finish. Whoops. Clips. After brushing off my pride, I go and register for next year. And then go eat. Shower. Feel rather proud. This was a fantastic experience, and so much fun. I am a little sad that the bad weather will be rolling in soon, as I rather like my green speed-machine Cannondale.


    And there ya have it. Report from the front (er, middle) line. I will search around for a picture as soon as they put them up!

    -TT

 

 

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