In reflecting back on my first century ride entered and completed these are some observations that come to mind.
1. Don't over think it. It's just another bike ride. If you can do 75 miles with something still left in the tank you can do 100 miles.
2. Ride your ride. You will always find some who is faster thinner, younger, has better equipment then you. This is all about you setting a pace that will allow you to cross the finish line.
3. Your training needs to be harder than the actual event. You gotta learn to do hills no matter if you like them or not, they're going to be there somewhere along the ride. Learn to ride in the wind, especially in a cross wind.
4. This next point is the most important one to me. Be aware that somewhere along the ride fatigue will start to set in and our thinking process won't be as sharp or clear as it should be. For me I started to pay extra attention to my surroundings at the 50 mile mark. Case in point last Saturday during the ride in Palm Springs at the 62 mile mark a 55 year old cyclist was hit broadside in an intersection and later died. As you get closer to the finish line the possibility of losing your focus looms greater just because of your physical exhaustion.
Closing thoughts: Was it worth it? YES! Would I do it again? In a heartbeat! I can remember riding up the street and making that right turn and heading for the finish line hearing the cow bells ringing and different people cheering for the riders as we crossed the FINISH LINE and getting off my bike and thinking, "I just road 100 miles." Even 6 days after the event I'm still amazed that "I rode 100 miles on my bike."
Phil - Tour De Palm Springs 6:53:01 15.10 MPH