The culmination of my fitness summer is usually the Wright Stuff Century ride (my computer said 101 miles, but whatever) that takes place every year on the Sunday before Labor Day. This year my summer fitness season not only culminates with this ride, but also the Chicago Half Marathon, happening this Sunday.
When I arrived this year, it was only 45 degrees - it ended up being 50 when it was time to take off.
As if the temp wasn't cold enough, we had to battle fog for the first hour of the ride. This was very annoying as when you are careening downhill at 40 mph you usually like to SEE - and it kept fogging up my glasses.
This photo turned out way better than I thought it would. As I was riding I did a standard check on my gear and noticed that the fog and mist in the air was condensing on the hair on my legs. Click for bigger. It really made it ccccold. Thank god I had my underarmour for my top half. I needed gloves though.
But the ride warmed up and by hour three or so I was able to strip the underarmour and ride away. The ride seemed tougher than usual this year, especially due to the addition of several hills at the end. The whole ride is hilly anyway (very hilly) and those "bonus" hills at the end sucked. Also the wind kicked up in mile 60-80, making it agonizing as I rode around Southern Wisconsin. But as always, I made it. 7 hours, 15 minutes in the saddle, averaging 14 mph - one full mph better than last year. Success! Time to relax a bit at Tyrol Basin, where the ride starts and finishes.
As always, the reward at the end - this year, Leinei's Red. Ahhh, another job well done.
Man that ride was TOUGH this time out. I have done this ride 4 or 5 times now and am not sure if I will do it again. Not that I couldn't, just that maybe some new scenery or rides will do me good. We will see. For now, I need to knock out that Chicago Half Marathon in a new personal best, and then give the body some well deserved time off, by just doing strength circuits, Muay Thai and a little five mile run or short 20-30 mile ride here and there just to keep the cardio up. Then after November or so, back into it, to train heavily for next years events.