As the title states, I am contemplating doing my first century ride this Saturday (One Helluva Ride, near Ann Arbor MI). I believe, or at least hope, I am in good enough shape to complete it. I got back into riding just over a year ago.
My longest single day ride so far is 60 miles, which was part of a week long bicycle tour (Pedal Across Lower Michigan). During that tour, we completed about 270 miles over 6 days. My average speed for the entire tour was just over 10 mph (mostly dictated by my wife). I believe I could've comfortably ridden the tour at about 13-15 mph. Also, I've ridden 30 miles at just over 16mph, with the ride distance limited by something other fatigue (dinner and other evening activities). I ride anywhere from 2-5 days a week, with occasional running thrown into the mix, and usually 1 day of light activity (walking) during the week. The bulk of my riding is done off-road. I have ridden 30 miles of singletrack in one ride before, without undue difficulty. The week long tour was just last week, by the way.
Based on my riding history, do you feel I am in good enough shape to attempt this, or should I ride either the 63 or 76 mile loops? What would be a good pace to target for my first century ride? Any advice regarding nutrition? I plan on eating a good breakfast, and carrying a few power bars with me. Does anyone have any advice for staying motivated? I won't know anyone on this ride going into it.