Back on regular Pepsi

I'm in Lincoln, Montana, after a super mellow day to rest and recharge before what I hope becomes a big push begins. It's funny to think that 65 miles with two decent climbs as a rest day, but that's what it feels like after five days on the Divide. I can feel myself getting stronger every day. My legs have pushed out the ache. My butt cheeks have hardened. I eat Snicker bars and traverse mountains carrying my whole life on a bicycle. Life is simple and good.

Since day 3 I've been traveling with John Nobile, last year's GDR winner who was a contender for this year until his knee went out just north of the border. Now he's touring with me for a few more days. It's been fun to have a traveling companion, especially one who knows the route so well. We've come across four bears on the trail, and he always charges ahead to chase them away, so that's a benefit, too.

I have managed to keep myself healthy and strong subsisting on gummy worms, chocolate, granola bars and peanut butter. I stop for a meal once a day and get the regular soda. It's just not the same. Today, because we had a short, easy day, I went to a gas station and bought 44 ounces of heavily iced diet Pepsi. It was heavenly.

Everything is tastier and more beautiful amid hard effort and continuous movement. I don't know what's going on in the race and really don't think about it all that often. John's usually the one who reminds me. He's all about planning and I'm all about not planning. We've managed to find a good balance so far, and by the time I'm on my own again, I hope I'll have established the perfect groove. The plan for tomorrow is a big day, four passes and 125 miles. I'm nervous, but I feel ready to start pushing. There's so much more big, beautiful country to see.

Sent on the go from my Peek


  1. Anonymous9:14 PM

    What an inspiration!! Thanks so much for sharing this experience with us, Jill. We send you best wishes from Texas for the rest of your ride!


  2. i'm so jealous of where you are right now. stick with john through lava mountain and hopefully you don't get as lost there as both he and i (and david) did last year.

  3. Yay! I love the Peek updates. Keep on rockin it. You sound so in your element on the phone call ins. Keep rolling at the pace that feels right.

  4. Snickers bars - that's too funny. It's because of you and Elden that I have two bags of fun size Snickers in the freezer. They really are awesome for bike rides!

  5. Thanks for the update, sounds like you are having a great time!

  6. sharon roes4:11 AM

    Jill, Sounds like you are having a great time - it is wonderful that you have someone to travel with - convince him to ride as far as you can - it is reassuring to know someone is with you. Have fun and enjoy every day.

  7. karen5:01 AM

    You, go girl

  8. Hi Jill, a new reader but have been tracking your progress on the leaderboard tracker. Keep on pushing, you're doing great!

  9. What a great update, Jill. Glad you are feeling strong!!

  10. Fantastic.
    you're so lucky and so blessed to be in gods country.

  11. I've been following your progress on the leaderboard. You're doing great. Keep it up.

  12. Thanks for the update Jill we are watching closely from the UK. Becca has been reading Ghost Trails as preperation for her first (solo!) 24hr race :)

    John really does like planning...and is pretty fast too. I raced against him in India back in 2007 and was never anywhere near him :)

    Keep riding and avoid the bears (makes me nervous just thinking about them!)


  13. Anonymous10:57 AM

    Mike In WI say's

    You starting to push it is exactly what I wanted to hear! Great to know you are feeling strong, Like Martha Stuart would say" 'It's a Good Thing'

    How does one follow updates on Peek? That question is for anyone.

    GO JILL!!!

  14. kentucky joe12:53 PM

    how many bears!!! I love the line "...carrying my whole life on a bicycle." Isn't that so true for any of us when we are really tuned into a nice distance ride. Stay Strong out there!

  15. Tony Mac12:58 PM

    You are inspiring. I love your posts and have read them for over a year now but am finally saying hey. And you lucky young get to indulge in Snickers Bars!

  16. Anonymous1:10 PM

    Totally geeking on the Spot. I think I saw you wave?

  17. linda erickson2:33 PM

    hey i'm john's sister and i'm glad he's keeping you company on the gdr! chasing bears, that sounds about right!

  18. Jill, I sure hope those were Black Bears! I was wondering up around glacier, if you would run into Grizzlys. I would be worried Grizz's would use those bikes for toothpicks!! I was very impressed to see your times. It was obvious you were settling in to a groove and making good times.

    I'm jealous. Although I have never biked the areas you are in, I have hiked and fly fished them for 30 years. Kinda my back yard :)

  19. Velobambina2:51 AM

    Keep pedaling, Jill. Cannot wait for further updates - I save them for boring times at work (which are NOT few and far between - thank goodness I have a lot of catching up to do, reading your past posts!!).
    Reading your blog is inspirational on many levels.


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