27 August 2010

2 Guys, 112 Miles, 6848 Calories ,One Flat, And Saved By The Kindness Of Other

Adam and I got a late start on our 112 mile excursion to Letchworth State Park on Saturday. We did not leave until a little after 10 a.m. The truth of the matter is it was pretty wet Saturday morning, and I did not know if we were going to get out at all. I thought, maybe I will just switch my rest days—take today off, and bike tomorrow. Whenever you think that it might be a good idea to change your rest day, DON'T DO IT unless absolutely necessary. This morning ended up being cooler, wetter, and a downright miserable day for riding. We would have had to spend 5+ hours on the trainer. BORING. And, there is no way to simulate those hills down in Letchworth. Brutal rollers. I am almost embarrassed to admit this, but this was the first time I had ever been to Letchworth State Park. I've lived less than an hours drive away most if my life, but have never visited—criminal!

We were a little over an hour into our ride and motoring—averaging a nice 21 m.p.h. (there was little wind when we started out this morning....this morning.) Well, leave it to me to allow something completely unexpected to nearly sideline our day completely...

I am riding into this little town of Caledonia when I notice a little extra float in my pedal. "That's weird," I thought. So, I unclipped from my pedal, and clipped back in thinking my pedal would miraculously work better if I willed it to. I looked down again right before we were about to make another turn, and decided to pull into the gas station at the corner. Unfortunately, the problem was a tad bit more severe. It seems like my crank arm had come loose. Yes... I said my crank arm came loose.
You know, I carry the usual things on my rides: tubes, tire levers, nutrition. 10 mm hex allen wrench with a super-long handle to torque the hell out of my crank? No. Do not carry one of those ever. I figure the weight of such a tool might drag me down a tad. I am standing there quite befuddled for a moment. We are in the middle of nowhere. It is a Sunday morning. Everything is closed, but it would not have mattered. Caledonia does not have a bike shop. How do I know this? On the way out of the little convenient store gas station comes a man on his way back to his car. I almost did not even speak to him. It turns out, speaking to him was the best decision I made that day. I said:

ME: Excuse me, sir. Are you from town?
HIM: I sure hope so, cuz' I'm the mayor.
ME: "Wow. Say, is there a bike shop in town?
HIM: (Chuckles) No. Why? What do you need?
ME: Well (heavy sigh) It seems like my crank arm came loose, and unless I fix it, I am done for the day.
HIM: What's a crank arm?
ME: This thingy right here that my pedals are connected to (now pointing)
HIM: Well, there is this guy in town who was really into biking. He has all sorts of tools, I know. What was his name....Dave Stone.

So, armed with this information, Mr. Mayor goes into the convenient store and looks up the dude's phone number in the phone book for me. He leaves a message on his machine, looks at me and says "It Sunday morning, he's probably out praying to God somewhere." Then he thinks for a minute and tell me that he will be back in a little bit. Adam and I sat at the store for about five minutes talking to the ladies working the counter inside. A couple of young ladies. She asked us where we were biking to. When Adam told her we were biking through Letchworth she thought we were just kidding. Oh, I love hearing people's responses when you tell them you are doing a 100 mile bike ride.

After some fairly banal, and innocent chit-chat with the convenient store girls, Mr. Mayor was back with tool in hand. He said he got it from one of the auto repair shops around town. I will have to get the name and thank that shop. One minute later, we had that crank arm torqued and ready to motor again.

After some testing in the parking lot, we were okay for takeoff.

That is, until we got another 10 minutes down the road and I got a flat tire. So, I went to grab a spare from the back of my bike, and I realized that I had given my tubes to Manuel the previous week on a bike ride and I forgot to put new ones on my bike. Oops. Luckily, the bike gods were still with us. A couple of minutes into changing my tire, this young dude rolls up in his Toyota Yaris and asks us if we need a hand. Young dude is equipped with tubes, a bike pump, nutrition. He had a bike shop in the back of his Yaris, not to mention his bike. Thanks bike god Phil for hooking us up. We'll hopefully get out there for a ride after Rev3.

I had no idea what these Turkey Vultures are doing perched
on the damn, but it kind of freaked me out a little. I felt
like we were about to be roadkill. 

 Look whose wearing a shirt!
Too beautiful to just ride through.
RIDE RECAP: The ride was amazing. On the way out, we we're cooking, until we hit the many steep rolling hills of the park. The most difficult part of the ride—by far— were miles 80-90 for me. I did not have enough solid food (one Clif bar the whole ride.) Ride and learn, I'm afraid. Even more than that, I just think that psychologically, that was the most difficult part of the ride because you've already rode so far, but you know you have another thirty miles left to pedal. I had my head down most of the time trying to just submit to the fatigue. I know now that I am going to have some solid food in my special needs bag come 12 September. I am thinking about a couple of peanut butter sandwiches, a banana, and apple, a whole turkey, a Snickers Bar, jell-o.  When I got home, I was  a little nauseous from starvation. Seriously, I was famished, and my stomach just couldn't stand any more fluid to drink. When I got home, my wife had a sheet pizza waiting for dinner. A little food in me, and I was fine again. I celebrated that evening by taking my family out to see Toy Story 3. I highly reccomend the movie, although, there were a couple of parts that were scary for me, not to mention my four year olds.

Anyway, I had a great ride and I can not wait to race and roll over my training for next year now that I am more efficient with my training have a really great fitness level. For all of you data dorks like me. Here are the unimpressive numbers and charts from our ride:

Distance:112.82 mi
Elevation Gain:3,247 ft
Moving Time:05:39:04
Elapsed Time:07:48:28
Avg Speed:18.4 mph
Avg Moving Speed:18.7 mph
Max Speed:43.6 mphd

Elevation Gain:3,247 ft
Elevation Loss:3,251 ft
Min Elevation:483 ft
Max Elevation:1,332 ft
P.S. Cool helmet, huh? Wait until you read my review!
Train Smart!


KC (my 140 point 6 mile journey) said...

Gotta love all these 100 and 100+ mile rides. Character building rides! Thank God for Phil's Yaris bike shop and the Mayor of Whoville for saving your day. The stars were definitely aligned for you that day. Now you have to pay if forward! Good luck with the last bits of training. I'll also be racing on 9/12 but just a half iron for "practice." Let's hear about that fancy shmancy helmet you're sporting.

Jeff - DangleTheCarrot said...

Wow ... I want to move to that town, what a cool thing for mr mayor to do!

Excellent avg time with all that climbing and great helmet!

Alexa said...

I love riding around the circles in Caledonia and Avon!

Kovas Palubinskas said...

Amazing ride for all you overcame and not falling prey to the vultures. Looks like a beautiful area.

Aimee (I Tri To Be Me) said...

Wow...that is awesome that two complete strangers were there to help you on your ride! Yay!

We took our two boys to see Toy Story 3 too! We/they loved the movie, but that crazy doll was really freaky and I cried about a dozen times! :)

Kristin (Triathlon Dreams) said...

Awesome that 2 strangers stopped and helped you out!!! You must've looked like a pro out there!! LOL!! Good luck with your Iron Distance Race!!

Caratunk Girl said...

Wow, that is so cool that your got your crank arm fixed like that. That saved you for sure! Great ride.

Hey, you didn't pimp out your buddy this time! :)

Molly said...

I can't believe it was the Mayor who came to your rescue! Great story.

We stayed away from Toy Story 3, I heard there was a scary baby in it, that would definitely freak my kids out.

Good luck on 9/12!! I'll send good vibes your way while I pound the Rochester pavement.


Bike Gods were with you on this ride fo sho.
love the elevation change in the ride. i need some of that