When I did this race last year, it was a slightly shorter 34-mile cycling route. Again, I know that this is a long distance for some of you out there who are just getting started, but for consistent cyclists, it is a typical Saturday ride...or a daily commute to and from the office. At 325 pounds in November of 2009, I rode my commuter bike those 34 miles and it was a major accomplishment. As I have said, it changed my life.
I was so grateful to have done this with my son. I will finish the El Tour wrap-up in an upcoming post, when I talk about what is ahead for Samson and the rest of the Clyde Family (the cycling disease is spreading!).
But on a very personal level, these are my takeaway points from the race:
- I was physically ready to enjoy the 66 mile route, could have endured the 79 mile route, and with a few more months of training, would have been able to finish the 109 mile route. Again, Clydesdales aren't built for speed...they are built for strength. I am much stronger than I thought.
- At my pace, the 66 mile route would take me a little more than 4 hours, which would be a fun, speed-challenge. The longer routes would add on more hours, which just does not seem too fun, despite the achievement of the greater distance. I'd rather do a slow-40 with family or a faster-66 and be done in 4 hours, than "prove something" by doing a 6-10 hour route of 80 - 109 miles. Note to self: stick to the 40 (with family) or 66 (for speed).
- Cycling simply requires more time away from home and the family than running. Cycling training is probably double that of running-training (Runners: please tell me if I have this right.).
- That doesn't mean I'm done cycling, but...
I am in need of a scary milestone event.