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  1. #1
    Senior Member Dad 2 3's Avatar
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    Ride Recap Horizontal Hundred my first century

    My nephew talked me into this ride, but he didn't have to twist my arm very hard because my goal in this my first season on a bike was to ride a century.

    This ride is in Findlay Ohio and advertised as one of the flattest centuries in the US hence the name. Advertised elevation gain was 684 feet, but it turned out it was about double what was advertised. Still very flat, for which I'm grateful. Since this ride is 3 hours from home we drove up the night before and stayed in a hotel.

    The stupid alarm clock went off at 5:30 and after showers and breakfast we hit the road almost 30 minutes before the official start. Within 10 miles we were freight trained by a group of 15 or so riders which included two tandems. LOL

    We were treated to a spectacular sunrise and a few spits of rain from some spotty clouds. It turned out that it was a chilly start at 55 degrees and I was grateful for the UA long sleeve compression shirt I had decided to throw on under my jersey at the last minute. I wore it all day and was quite comfortable. At the 27 mile rest stop I ate some fruit, and refilled my water bottle.

    When I got back on the bike the first thing I noticed was the wind and mentioned something to my nephew. He laughed and said it had been blowing steady since we started, but that I hadn't noticed because I was fresh. I resigned my self to my fate and pedaled onto the lunch stop at the 50 mile mark.

    After lunch came a long headwind section which really zapped me. At the 72 mile rest stop I ate more fruit and a doughnut and refilled my bottles. At about the 80 mile mark both of use started to struggle a bit, but we made it to the 85 mile mark where there was another rest stop. After more fruit and another doughnut, I really wanted to just lay down in the grass and go to sleep, but we soldiered on knowing that the end was near. The end was the sweetest with folks lining the route and ringing the obligatory cow bells.

    This was no doubt the most fun I've ever had on a bike, with tons of conversations with total strangers bonding over a similar experience.

    Moving time was 6:31 with a 15.3mph average. Our total time was 7:55. Here is a link to my nephews data, which I'm claiming since we were stuck to each other like glue. I only have Strava for the iphone, and knew my battery wouldn't last for the whole ride, so I didn't bother. Any way my first century is in the books. I survived it and I'm looking forward to the next one.

    http://connect.garmin.com/activity/2...k16EM.facebook

    My nephew (on right) and I (on left) after the ride.
    First century.jpg
    My bike: Scott CR1 Elite, Trek 7.2FX
    My Strava: http://app.strava.com/athletes/651178

  2. #2
    Senior Member volosong's Avatar
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    Nice ride. That 80-mile marker must be some type of wall, (for us casual cyclists). Sort of like the 20-mile mark in a marathon. You're right. Knowing that it is almost over gives one the umph to finish. Well done.
    Deut 6:5

    ---

    "Ha ha! You fool! You fell victim to one of the classic blunders - The most famous of which is 'never get involved in a land war in Asia'".
    - Vizzini during his "battle of wits" with the Man in Black

  3. #3
    Senior Member goldfinch's Avatar
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    Nice job!

  4. #4
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    Thanks for sharing your story about your ride. One day I may do a century but I am looking for a down hill century not a flat century. Oh does down hill count?

    I think that I need to start at the continental divide and work from there. I might consider doing a century on a bike track if there was one close by. Maybe a nice smooth track would lower the rolling resistance an make the century a little easier.

    I really admire you guys that have ridden a century. I have ridden a metric century and because it was not flat and I am not a great rider, it took me 7 hours.

    Your ride time is impressive to me.

  5. #5
    Senior Member volosong's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jim p View Post
    ...I really admire you guys that have ridden a century. I have ridden a metric century and because it was not flat and I am not a great rider, it took me 7 hours...
    Jim, forget about the time or how long it takes. If you can ride a metric century, you can ride an imperial century. Slow and steady, be sure to hydrate often and eat something every 20 miles or so. Work up to being able to do an 80-mile ride, then a century is just a little bit longer. Next summer in mid-June, when the daylight hours are the longest might be a good goal. Depending on where in the country you are, the temperatures have a big influence also. Cooler is better. Don't pay a bunch of bucks for a supported charity century. Those have time limits. Get your loved ones to support you and meet you at specified intervals to give you water and food. You can do it!
    Deut 6:5

    ---

    "Ha ha! You fool! You fell victim to one of the classic blunders - The most famous of which is 'never get involved in a land war in Asia'".
    - Vizzini during his "battle of wits" with the Man in Black

  6. #6
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    Great story and thanks for sharing. I love reading ride reports and find them very inspiring. 3 more weeks and I get to try my first century. Like yours mine is very flat being on the MD eastern shore. Did the metric last year and I'm hoping to pull off the imperial this year.
    Your average speed is exactly what I've been hitting on my longer rides. No idea what happens after 70 miles, but I'm going to find out this Sat. Thanks again for the story.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Black wallnut's Avatar
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    Congrats on the century. Impressive time as well. What was for lunch?


    Mark

  8. #8
    Senior Member corwin1968's Avatar
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    How was riding a century on a flat-bar bike with fat tires? I'm eye-balling a century as a possible future goal and I also ride a fat-tired, flat-bar bike.
    Currently riding a 1983 Takara Highlander converted to a single-speed.

  9. #9
    Senior Member IBOHUNT's Avatar
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    Congrats.
    Now go do a faster one

  10. #10
    Senior Member Shellyrides's Avatar
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    I can't wait for my first century! You guys who do them are my heroes!

  11. #11
    Cat 5 field stuffer bbeasley's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing, you make it sound so doable. My first is coming up on Sept 30.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Dad 2 3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Black wallnut View Post
    Congrats on the century. Impressive time as well. What was for lunch?
    Ham or turkey sandwich with fixings, potato salad(skipped this), pasta salad (skipped this as well), various raw vegetables, oranges, apples, chips (skipped these too), chocolate chip cookies(1 for me). The lunch was much better than I thought it would be,or maybe I was just voraciously hungry.

    Quote Originally Posted by corwin1968 View Post
    How was riding a century on a flat-bar bike with fat tires? I'm eye-balling a century as a possible future goal and I also ride a fat-tired, flat-bar bike.
    This is my first bike since I was a child, so I don't have anything to compare it to. I thought it was fine, and possibly a bit smoother than riding on the narrower tires of a road bike. The flat bars do present a challenge in the very small choice of hand position. I think the key is to switch hand position every 2-5 minutes other wise my hands start to go numb. DO NOT let only having a "fat-tired and flat-bar bike keep you from doing a century. There were all types of bikes there including folders, recumbent, and tandems.

    Quote Originally Posted by IBOHUNT View Post
    Congrats.
    Now go do a faster one
    It's in the works, but like you I'm a die hard bow hunter who lives fall life in a tree or blind, so it may not be until next spring.

    Quote Originally Posted by bbeasley View Post
    Thanks for sharing, you make it sound so doable. My first is coming up on Sept 30.
    Good luck! I truly believe that anyone, with a little preparation and heart, can do a century. Especially one as flat as this.
    My bike: Scott CR1 Elite, Trek 7.2FX
    My Strava: http://app.strava.com/athletes/651178

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