Archive for October, 2009

It’s been a while… The Seacoast Century & Newport, RI

October 12, 2009

It’s been quite awhile since I’ve updated. I was sick and since then things have been a bit overwhelming.

On Saturday, September 26, my mom and I rode in the Seacoast Century. I spent the night before at my parents so we could leave early in the morning. We rode a little over a half century, clocking in at 55 miles.

I had wanted to push myself to ride 63 miles (a metric century), but really hadn’t trained enough. I hadn’t been on my bike in several weeks and I really didn’t get enough training rides in over the summer. Also, our noses kept running throughout the entire ride. The next day, my mom and I both got sick. I came down with a fever and terrible cold which lasted for four days.

This was physically the most challenging thing I’ve ever done and it felt so good (well, and so bad). The first ten miles of almost every ride are always challenging for me, then I get into my groove. Around mile ten or so, I was riding 17mph, which is a pretty fast pace for me. But then I kept hearing, “On your left!” “Good morning!” as people at least twice my age zoomed past me. It was a humbling experience. I also couldn’t help but smile at around 35 or 40 miles when I was riding around 12mph (not an incredibly fast speed, but I was feeling pretty good even though I was getting tired…) and someone shouted over their shoulder at me, “YOU CAN DO IT!” as if I looked like I were about to give up or fall over. The last 10 miles of the ride, though, were brutal. From about mile 45 on, I was really hurting and totally exhausted.

The ride itself is absolutely spectacular. You ride right next to the ocean for a good portion of the ride. It was a beautiful day, sunny and a little cool, in the low 60s. I’m thinking about doing another century in July, and I definitely want to do the Seacoast Century again next year–hopefully the whole 100 miles.

Mom looks at the cue sheet before heading out on the ride. The roads were also really well marked with arrows on the pavement.

Mom looks at the cue sheet before heading out on the ride. The roads were also really well marked with arrows on the pavement.

My bike! The entire day, we only saw one rider besides me who didn't have clip pedals. I need to learn...

My bike! The entire day, we only saw one rider besides me who didn't have clip pedals. I need to learn...

Mom before the ride.

Mom before the ride.

We took this when we were stopped at a bridge crossing. We didn't take any pictures while riding because it's too hard to stop. The scenery was so beautiful, though!

Here I am at the bridge crossing. There were lots of riders at the crossing because we had to wait for a boat to go through, but the route was not crowded. You definitely saw lots of riders on the road, but it didn't feel congested at all.

Here I am at the bridge crossing. There were lots of riders at the crossing because we had to wait for a boat to go through, but the Century was not crowded. You definitely saw lots of riders on the road, but it didn't feel congested at all.

This is the Maine rest stop at Fort McClary. We refueled on oranges, cookies, & peanut butter & jelly sandwiches.

This is the Maine rest stop at Fort McClary. We refueled on oranges, cookies, & peanut butter & jelly sandwiches.

At the rest stop.

At the rest stop.

Getting off my bike made me realize that I was getting a little tired...

Getting off my bike made me realize that I was getting a little tired...

Fast forward two weeks…

David and I had talked about going away this weekend for our anniversary (five years next Friday) since it’s a three-day weekend. We talked about NYC, Portland, ME, and Burlington, VT. We ruled out Montreal since it’s Thanksgiving in Canada this weekend and didn’t want to get stuck in traffic crossing the border. We decided, though, to just do a day trip to Newport, RI. On Saturday David and I went to Newport, RI. We walked around downtown and had a late lunch. Then we walked the Cliff Walk–on one side is the ocean, on the other side there are 65,000 sq ft mansions.