Doing a century ride (100 miles) is on my to-do list of sporting events. In fact, it’s something I’ve tentatively pencilled in for this Summer, if I can get the training in.
This weekend, I set out to complete 100 miles over the course of two days: a sort of unofficial split-century ride.
Like last weekend, I was open-water swim coaching at Dorney Rowing lake. Dorney is almost exactly a 20 mile ride from my house, so I rode there and back on Saturday (40 miles), rode there again on Sunday (60 miles) and then rode home the long way on Sunday (90 miles).
I intended to drop my (massive!) rucksack off and turn around for a final 10 miles but, in all honesty, after two days (and six sessions) of open-water coaching in the blazing heat, plus 90 miles of cycling with a heavy pack on my back, I was ready to drop.
As luck would have it, my husband had been setting up my new tri bike for me whilst I’d been out coaching, and he suggested we both head out for a short shake-down ride to check the set-up. So I glugged a gorgeous quick iced coffee, stuffed a generic cereal bar in my mouth and off we went. I had a new lease of life after the caffeine and carbs (not to mention having got rid of that rucksack – seriously, the thing is almost as big as me!) and the new tri bike is super-aero, so I was holding a nice quick pace.
Before I knew it, we were back home and I’d done it: 100 miles over two days!
It’s not an official century ride of course, but the fact that it was split over a weekend is pretty much offset by the fact that I was carrying that rucksack for much of it (top triathlon coach Bill Black lifted the bag on Sunday, raised his eyebrows and told me training with that on was like doing one long hill session) – and coaching in between times!
I wish I’d been able to take more photos of the things I cycle past between here and Dorney. Some classic scenes straight out of some cliched TV show, including stables for polo ponies, strapping chaps playing cricket in their whites and – my favourite – Eton boys dashing through town in their full Eton garb, on their way to….well, I’m not sure. Wherever Eton pupils rush to early on a Sunday morning, dressed to the nines.
Have you done a century ride? What was it like? And…does the post-ride hunger ever end?