Sunday, March 14, 2010

Solvang Century Race (Ride) Report

It's been a crazy week of training....a peak week, and since my injured IT Band has been recovery nicely a lot more intensity has been thrown in.  The highlight was my first 100 mile ride --- the Solvang Century.  I stayed up at my mom's house, about 30 minutes from the small Danish town of Solvang.  After waking up at 5:15 I suited up and headed Northeast.  I saw a small red fox run across the road as I neared the start, that definitely woke this nature lover up!  The first thing I noticed was the insane wind.  It's not often that you look at a forecast and it has ARROWS (representing wind) as the icon (usually sun, clouds, etc...)  They had predicted 20-30 mph winds all day....Yikes.

I started slightly after 7 AM and worked my way through the farm land.  From time to time massive "pelotons" would streak by at 20 mph and then get promptly broken up at the sight of a roller.  It was really fun spending some time in these large groups of 40+ cyclists.  It certainly helped with the wind!  I ended up meeting up with another LA Tri member, Chris Bird at around mile 30 --- we stuck together for 15 or so miles before I went off on my own.  At times I was powering through the crazy wind by myself, at times I was leading pacelines.  Rarely could I find a group that wasn't riding too fast or too slow.  It's ok, all that wind certainly made the trek rougher, which was the point of the day!

Somewhere in all of the insane beauty the course offered we were halted as cattle crossed the road!  So witty dude yelled "cow up!"  I laughed.

My coach, Rom had told me to really push hard the last 30 miles, which included the hardest rollers on the course (and also the most tired legs.)  I took this to heart, and despite hitting "mini walls" at miles 60 and 80 was able to push through, passing hordes of people who went out too hard.  The last 10 miles I was finally on the right side of the wind and flew into town at 30+ mph.  If it weren't for the crazy rough road this would have been the best part of the day.  The last bit of the course was the same as the SB Wine Country Half Marathon - so I got to avenge the two hills that cost me those 2/10 of a second that had me go just over 1:50 last May!  Cruising in I noticed that the finish was 1 miles short by my count.  I wanted those triple digits!  So I road up a half mile, turned around and called my first 100 miler complete in about 6:08.  Very happy with a 16 mph average on the windiest day I've ever ridden in.  

Although I was totally spent, I was oddly energized.  Despite thinking on the course "and I'm planning on running a marathon after this?"  I can actually begin to wrap my head around the idea.  Training is working...but I'm still freaking bloody tired!  But my spirits are definitely lifted by my most recent purchase at the expo....a Dr Pepper cycling jersey!  I think I'll have to wear this in my big race...


  1. Great job with those winds! People would think you are crazy by riding 100 miles and then you add a mary on top of it right afterwards - IM Crazy !!!!

    Have a great week!

  2. Most excellent indeed! You're setting yourself up for an awesome time in France!

  3. Great ride and race report, really enjoyed the read, and congrats! I still have yet to do one, maybe this summer... Cheers!



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Film composer moonlighting as a runner, cyclist and triathlete