Saturday, October 11, 2008

I was a Sissy for 56 miles or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bike

(MMMM Cake)


That is the difference between 56, the mileage that we rode today and 18, the mileage that was my previous high. Wait a minute, that's not right. Carry the 1.....

38. Holy Monkeys that's even more.

Originally I was going to shoot for 28 miles. I was confident. This would be a big leap from 18. TEN MORE MILES! My usual crew of scurvy dogs were up for the challenge. Ok, so it was a walk in the park for them, but still, the gauntlet had been thrown. Hmm, I never realized that I am not sure the significance of that phrase until now. The gauntlet? Who threw it? and why? Anyways, I digress.

So I quickly realized my folly of including The Guth on the email chain when he chortled at my 28 mile challenge. (Dramatization) "HA!" he bellowed! "Let's traverse the great Mt. Fairly Flat Road instead!"(EoD) I am not sure if I was paying attention, but I quickly agreed to this idea. And that, my friends, was my second mistake.

(Mt. The Guth is trying to kill me)

Honor and pride are funny things. When you realize you have made a mistake, pride makes you say you aren't going to back down while honor makes you stick to what you said you would do. Today I hate honor and pride. The first few miles of the ride with The Guth, Mike Spiz, and Jeff Kerwin were a dream on my new bike! The ride was so smooth, so luxurious, and with a turkey sandwich for breakfast I was feeling good! Then came a point where my energy started to fade. Uh oh, time to break out the gummi snacks! By the time we reached Machias, I was craving that clif bar sitting in my pouch. OH GOODNESS! Peanut butter and a rest, 15 miles into our bike ride i was feeling good again. We were going to zip up to the end of the trail (Arlington?), and I was only a little saddle sore, and was pretty happy with my learning curve on my clips and shoes.

Around the 20 mile mark I started to feel my left knee twinge a little. This is where I start to become a sissy. Is sissy the right word? Nevertheless, it didn't get better and I whined a bit about it to Jeff. Like a sissy would. However, I was eating while I went and keeping my energy high, but realizing I would not be able to make my seemingly adequate supply of treats lasting the whole trip. The six of us (we picked up two at machias) coasted into the Arlington trailhead.

(Bicycle Gang)

I DID IT! 28 miles! I did what I had planned to do! I don't think a suggestion of hitch-hiking back to The Guth's house would have elicited agreement, so I wisely kept my mouth shut. After a good break and tasty treats, we started our 28 mile trek back. And the knee got worse. And missing my clip and landing hard on my seat was painful. And the food supply was running low. And starting sentences with "And" is not a proper use of grammar.

My last jellybean was around the 36 mile mark, My last clif bar was at Machias, around 41 Miles. 15 miles to go, no more food. Did i mention i'm a pansy? Oh, that's right, i'm using sissy. So for those who don't know me, I have what scientists call a "survival instinct". Shoot, I used the wrong word. I actually meant "Survival layer of padding". Yes, I have a bit more weight than I would like, and I was pulling all that weight with every pedal. Hence, I was burning up the calories! No food for 15 miles was not a good move. I lasted until around the 51 mile mark, at which point sissy mode went full throttle.

(Mike D before(left) and after(right) the bike ride)

No energy, very sore knee, and very sore uhm.... undercarriage (you know what i mean!), and about 5 miles to go. I used the highest %$#^@ gear I could to go those last 5 miles, and every stroke of the pedals felt like a stroke of the heart! Oh, damn, you don't get strokes in your heart, well, you know what I mean. As we entered Everett I tried to well up the reserve power and foolishly went through 2 yellow lights. If I stopped I wasn.t starting again. Finally we returned back to where it all began, and as we were pulling ourselves out of our gear The Guth asked me if I was ready to do it again next week. Of course, you know the answer.

No! I'm a sissy, haven't you been paying attention?

So, in conclusion, let me thank the Guth, Mike, and Jeff for EVERYTHING! Bundling me up, keeping me motivated, and not leaving me in Snohomish. I would like to give jeers though to Hammer gel, that stuff didn't do it for me.

And The Guth, I will do another 56 soon, just need to recover from this one. I know i have a TdM GC to win next year!!

|_ /\


  1. All I did was plant the sissy seed. soon you'll be doing all sorts of other sissy things: amassing lycra clothing, contemplating leg shaving, and dare I say...embrocation? Nah, it's too soon.

    Nice work out there though, and yes, see you next weekend!

  2. Nice job on surviving Guth's ride. I've got another number for you. I believe it's 180. If theGuth ever tells you he has a "fun" ride which includes 180th street in Bothell, you need to call in sick that morning.

  3. Yeah, I've heard that one before. "this is the last hill"... or, "today's LSD (long slow day)" or "you'll be fine". Guth's definition of "fun ride" definitely involves propoganda. Dr. Strange Chafed Undercarriage advises ample scoops of chamois butt'r or assos creme