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Monday, May 14, 2007

A Royal Battle for Six Hours and Twenty-seven Minutes

The Platte River Marathon has its name for a reason: Battle Royal.
My battle lasted 6:27 hrs and it was a looooooong time.

I don't think that there were as many riders this year than last. Last year, I had teamed up with Nicole Koch, but this year, I decided ("two wheeled bike junkie" that I become) to do it alone. Cons, well it is a darn long time to spend on a bike but I could take a break whenever I felt like it and I did, trust me I did.

They started with a Lemond-start, at least I think that is what it's called. Everybody lays their bike down and then you do a running start...
I took my time since I know what was coming: that monster hill to get to the single track. I rode a race in Germany and they called a hill like that "the knee-breaker". I think this hill deserve that title as well.
Well that hill didn't break my knees but showed me something else pretty horrible. My legs were tired, heavy, I don't know what, but not in the mood to take me through this course for the next six hours. I told myself not to panic. Maybe my brains just told my legs to take it easy to preserve the strength?!?
So I just kept going (what else would I do) and hoped for better legs. After all, I was doing this for fun:)
I think lap one was the slowest lap, I have ever done in there. I walked a lot and I didn't feel great about my "out-put" but at least physically, besides the legs, I was fine. I drank enough water and magic potions (don't worry, just good old sports drinks) and consumed my 60 grams of carbs an hour. Worked like a champ!
Lap two was a bit better, but still more work than it should have. I crashed on that lap pretty hard. Adding to my bruise-collection as I call it and scratched up my right arm pretty good in something..."Grass Rash"!?
After a short bike check, it wasback in the saddle and off I went.
All in all, I think my riding was the best during that lap. I got more confidence on my bike and rode more stuff.
It was still good to get to the start/finish line, oh that reminds me of THE GULLY, if you have ridden there, you know what I am talking about. It is normally the last fast run out of the trail, but not this time. The huge rain, that we has last weekend was still standing in there.

This is a picture off Cornbread's blog. I had to post it. First of all, you see the mud and second of all, made it laugh me so hard. That's Paul, looking for some sun-glasses and a water bottle...

Anyways, once you got through there, you were almost done, at least with lap two.

Same routine, another water bottle and some gels and withstanding the temptation of various offered lawn chairs to rest for a moment.

Lap three, like in pain level triples? All of a sudden I got cramps and had to get off the bike and walk them off. I just kept drinking and refueling in hope to make them go away.
Not much to say about that lap, other then I started feeling the hours in the saddle or walking and pushing my bike. Still, I kept looking at my watch to see what time it was. Would I make it back in time for lap four? Would I ride another lap, over 5 hours into the race?
The "two-wheeled-junkie" that I have become, decided still halfway into lap three, YES, I WILL ride another lap....crazy eh!?!
I did make it in time to ride my fourth lap. That lap was done by pure will power. I just pushed through all the pain and exhaustion.
AND after 6:27 hrs, I crossed the finish line for the final time....YEAH!!!

How good it was to get off the bike:) Martin, Mr.W and I just stayed around until the final results got posted and who would have thought, I made 3rd in the Women's Open Class.

Compared to the other riders, my four laps aren't all that great. I rode super slow and walked a lot, but I did stick it out until the end and that's great. I am trying to live by my motto:


So there is still room for improvement, but I am trying (hard) and that is what counts!

So much for this year's dream to become a leg-model.
Battle Scars. Painful yes, but proudly earned:)

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Blogger sydney_b said...

Good write up. Oh, and it's called a "le mans" style start. :)

Leg modeling is overrated. Much better to use those legs to power yourself through some fun. Glad u went a racing and congrats on your finish!


Blogger VeloCC said...

Well sank yu for se spellin:)
That's why I couldn't find it online...doh.
My bruises look even worse now, but you are right: More POWER to them!!



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