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My first century ride!

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Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.

My first century ride!

Old 06-27-11, 07:01 PM
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My first century ride!

I rode this event last year but the hills crushed me like a bug:

https://www.centuryride.com/

It just made me more determined and this year I completed all 103 miles
and 8,606 feet of elevation gain!

Despite several business trips this spring, I managed to put in over 500+ miles
of training in the 8 weeks or so before the event as well as intentionally
riding the steepest local hills in the area.

The weather was perfect - it started out in the low 60's and topped out at
about 75. I drank at least one 20 oz bottle each hour and ate 150 to 200
calories an hour. I am now sick of Cliff, NuGo and Larabars but the event
organizers had ample fruit and other high energy snacks every 20 miles or so.

At mile 50, the road climbed 2,000+ ft in just over 5 miles with a grade of
10 to 12% for the last mile and a half section. I was unable to keep up with
my friend Chad so when I met up with him at the rest stop at the top I smiled
and gave him the excuse that I had to stop to smoke a cigarette

My longest training ride was only 60 miles and I was expecting to be hurting
big time on the last 30 mile section but it wasn't as hard as I thought.
Fatigued and tired but none of that "legs on fire" feeling that I have had
in the past when riding beyond my limits.

I was impressed with the number of very fit older (60+) riders (both men
and women) including an older couple on a tandem bike who made the
steep climb - the rider in the back (the wife) has no brakes or ability
to steer. I hit 50 mph on the descent and the tandem easily exceeded
that - she is probably still not talking to her husband.

I must say it was a very very satisfying accomplishment.

John
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Old 06-27-11, 07:06 PM
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Congrats, I know you're proud of your accomplishment as you should be. Hope you had fun.
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Old 06-27-11, 07:15 PM
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Congratulations...very nice report.
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Old 06-27-11, 07:26 PM
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Congratulations! You rock.
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Old 06-27-11, 07:40 PM
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Congrats on a great ride and a great report.
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Old 06-27-11, 07:56 PM
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Congratulations That's a lot of climbing for your first century.
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Old 06-27-11, 09:21 PM
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Great job. The century I did had 860 feet climbing according to MapMyRide or 1366 according to Garmin. Either way nothing like what you did. I can't imagine doing all that climbing.
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Old 06-27-11, 10:48 PM
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Congrats on achieving a milestone.
Don't worry about the tandem. If they are a good team and feel very secure in each others abilities, 60+ is no problem, provided the conditions are safe.
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Old 06-27-11, 10:59 PM
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Originally Posted by VaultGuru
Congrats on achieving a milestone.
Don't worry about the tandem. If they are a good team and feel very secure in each others abilities, 60+ is no problem, provided the conditions are safe.
I wasn't worried about them - I just can't imagine my wife allowing me to go that fast with her on the back where she has limited visibility and no control. I would have sore ribs to show for it!

The road was smooth, wide and virtually free of any cars so it wasn't unsafe by any means; it is just rare to ever reach 50 mph on a bicycle...
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Old 06-27-11, 11:43 PM
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Congratulations. I still remember my first century. In spite of certain sensitive areas being absolutely numb for four days I was addicted for life. Nearly four decades later I still remember the nice people I rode with that day (and the Brooks saddle that never did get comfortable). So, the obvious question: when's your next one?

As far as the tandem, VaultGuru is right. 60+ mph is no biggee. My wife is usually captain but I control the drag brake. Well, sort of; when she tells me to brake, I brake.
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Old 06-28-11, 11:54 AM
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8 hours in the saddle was tough but nothing lasting. No worse than sitting in the cheap seats at a double header baseball game...

I don't have definite plans for another century this summer but who knows. I have a couple backpacking trips in the works as well as a family vacation.
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Old 06-28-11, 01:44 PM
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Problem with Tandems is that speed on the downhills is governed by the decibell rating. That in laymans terms is by how loud the stoker can scream. And no Drag brakes on my tandem- So the stoker has no chance.

Well done on the 100 mile ride. It will not be your last but get a metric in before the end of the year. In fact get two in. One to find out what they are like and the second to do in 4 hours. I am an 8 hour 100 miler but 4 hours on the metric so that is your standard to go for.
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Old 06-28-11, 03:45 PM
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The decibel limit is actually much higher considering the typical hearing loss of the 50+ crowd on this forum... The stoker has to resort to physical violence!

I did a metric training ride about 3 weeks ago and maintained an average speed (not including stops) of 15 mph but I couldn't keep that pace for 100 miles. My average speed on the century was 13.4.
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Old 06-28-11, 04:58 PM
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congrats 50 mph you rock
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Old 06-29-11, 05:32 AM
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congratulations!
Welcome to the century club. Century riders stay in the saddle longer.
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