Friday, January 26, 2007

Big century

This is one end of the Juneau road: Berner's Bay, North mile 40.

This is the other end: Thane, South mile 6.

Of course I rode past this point.

It's beautiful out there.

Then again, it's beautiful everywhere.

It was my new odometer's first day.

Date: Jan. 26
Mileage: 100.3
January mileage: 784.4
Temperature upon departure: 29

Today was my "long" training ride before the Susitna 100, and it went really well. I planned to stay out for 10 hours, but after 9:08 I had pretty much run out of road, and I felt pretty good about having 100 miles in the base anyway. I didn't do an extra spur to push my mileage over 100. Riding from my house to one end of the road and then back to the other is really exactly 100 miles.

The best part about today's ride is that any given hour was not any more or less arduous than the next. That's when I know I'm in a good endurance state of mind. During my 80-mile ride last week, I pretty much crashed and had to limp the last 10 miles. But today I ate much better (about 1,200 calories. Huge for me during a ride, and a good amount, too, I think.) And I felt strong the whole time. As I was riding back from Thane, I thought about how I felt fairly similar to the way I feel when I ride that road from my house - when it's just a 15-mile ride. Today I felt just as upbeat and excited about the setting - a calm, moonlit evening with the lights of Douglas sparkling across the channel - as I would on any good day, despite the fact that I already had more than 90 miles behind me. Like I said - a great endurance state of mind. I'm not always blessed with it, but when it settles in, I feel like I can turn the pedals indefinitely.

Today I also eclipsed my highest-mileage month of 2006 - it was July, at 710 miles. January 2007 would be my highest mileage month ever, except for I did that cross-country bike tour in 2003, and it's going to be pretty hard for me to ever beat 1,600 miles. I guess it doesn't hurt to dream, though.