Friday, January 21, 2011

The Finale: Morro Bay- Santa Barbara

Ohhhh ya baby! I woke up and was surprised to find it wasn't as painful to sit in the saddle as I thought it might be. Or maybe it's because I used a half bottle of chamois cream in my shorts. Whatever it takes, these legs had 125miles to go. Day 2's train-o-pain didn't leave me smiling as I rode into the hotel. Lucky for me, day 3 started with an easy 15mile stroll, and coffee stop. As if I hadn't digested enough caffeine over the past 2 days. Coffee, 2xcaffeine Roctane GU , and cold double shot espresso drinks were my potions of choice.
55 people started the ride from the Golden Gate bridge. Although some only rode day 1 or did partial days, most rode the entire way. After stopping for coffee it was time for our finale! SMILE, and 2 seconds later we were off again!
Ohhhhhhhhhhh crap. Hold on legs! My ability to hold in there on the hills, or cover the gap after falling off hurt more than ever. I didn't mind accepting a few pushes from the guys. My ego was long gone, as I was just happy to still be participating. Eventually I had to call "UNCLE!" and let the group fly away. (This wasn't a new attempt for comic relief. I literally yelled "uncle" a few times the previous day. However, it was followed up with encouragement and "don't give up" pleas from those around me.)
The group stopped for water a few miles later,. but I rolled on with Beth and the Thirsty Bear boys. Day after day , they kept us laughing! (Seriously, I keep having random reminders of the off-the-wall comments they'd yell to us and find myself laughing). Notice our shorts and jersey only attire, blue skies and sunshine. The weather kept getting better!
The scenery couldn't compare to that of Day 2. I think I started getting a bit delusional. What?!?! talking to the random farm animals along the way seemed totally appropriate!

I arrived at our our lunch stop feeling pretty darn good. I was scared to stop as I didn't want my legs to lock up. I rolled in and tried to get some help with my first mechanical issue. My bike wasn't shifting properly. I was limited in gear choice but sucked it up and rode on. I wasn't laughing quite as much during our post lunch stop hill session, but better to have this problem in day 3 as opposed to day 1. Oh well, ride on!
Eventually we made it! I raced for the Santa Barbara city limit sign- awwww ya, who's a cyclist now ;-) Can we say, horse riding for the barn?!?!?!
3 days, 380miles. I did it! Faster than expected...but also way more fun than anticipated.
A quick smile for the camera, a quicker shower, and Beth and I were off for the train station. Thankfully there were a few restaurants across the street from the train station. We stocked up and with 2 minutes to spare were ready for a long train ride back to SD. (We both agreed that we were happy to not be driving. We were a tad bit delirious, and not in any condition to operate a motor vehicle).
What a journey! Thanks for reading...and if you ever get the chance to do this ride- DO IT! Goodnight California coast...