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Rather long, but interesting (I think)post-230-40 mile solo(26 posts)

Rather long, but interesting (I think)post-230-40 mile soloThioderek
Aug 19, 2001 1:37 PM
So I nailed a 230-40 mile ride solo on Saturday. It was hands down the hardest thing I have ever done. None of my friends wanted to try it with me, so it was a solo effort. The 230-40 miles is a rough estimate because I have no bike computer, I got all the distances from Mapquest and added some miles.

The first leg was from downtown Brooklyn to Orient Point Long Island. Mapquest gave it 107 miles from my home address to the Point. I added another 8 miles because I wasnt able to take the freeway. I left my apartment at 6:30 in the morning to make the ferry that leaves from Orient Point to New London. There was a 12 oclock ferry and a 4 oclock. I was deadset on getting the 12 because I didnt want to wait for the 4 oclock. So already I knew I was up against a serious time crunch. I literally rode my ass off getting there. Glancing at my watch constantly and freaking out that the mileage signs didnt seem to go down fast enough.

The last 15 miles of this half were the hardest I have ever done physically. My right calf started cramping up and then my left. I was trying to stretch them out while riding but knew that if I slowed down I would miss the ferry. I was in agony trying to keep my legs going on pace for the ferry time. I made it to the ferry at exactly 11:55. I bought a ticket and jumped on with my bike-12 bucks. The ferry ride was 1:20-that is what it said on thier website. It turned into a 1:45 minute ride. But it was a welcome time to just sit down and recover from the beating I had given my body. I had a good/adequate lunch and sat in the sun watching the waves. I called a few friends before the boat docked when we got into cellular range to tell them how I was doing.

I knew that I was looking at another 110 miles plus (this turned into more), but my body didnt feel too damaged after the first half of the ride. I knew that there wasnt any time restraints on the second leg and I knew I would hit a wall of some sort in the middle of the second leg. I chose Boston Post Road/Route 1 for the second leg. It is a straight shot from New London to Larchmont where I was going to stop at some relatives house. Route 1 rides right through it. No worrying about turns or merging, just follow the road.

That tactic looks good on paper, but it was another story when actually tried. Route 1 meanders around so much that you are adding miles on like you wouldnt believe. The hills arent that bad, but they were taking their toll on my body at this point. It was a beautiful ride though.

My mind started giving out on me at what I estimate was 180-190 mile range. I would pull over and slam an orange soda and a gatorade and be on my way until the next time I had to get off my bike. It was tough. I was questioning the ride, my life, everything. I rode into my cousin's house at 9pm-1:30 minutes off the mark that I wanted.

All told:

230-40 miles (estimate)
NO FLATS-I am amazed
Start time 6:30 am
Finish time 8:55 pm
Ferry ride 1:45 minutes
Foods: 1 grilled cheese sandwich, 2 cliff bars, 1 bag of corn chips, 4 bottles of water, 3 gatorades, 2 root beers, 1 orange soda, 6 oreo cookies, 1 Mountain Dew (mistake)

I dont know if this was a fast time or not. All I know is I did it.

I bought a Powerball ticket in the middle of the ride-what if I win?

I rode into work today.

I will do the ride again-faster.
Congratulationsmike mcmahon
Aug 19, 2001 1:47 PM
I've got some random questions: some serious, some not so serious.
First, did you enjoy the ride while you were doing it, or was it just one long, painful experience? Why was Mountain Dew a mistake? I mean, I'd never drink it because I think it tastes like crap, but why did it rub you the wrong way? Are you ready to be flamed for using a cell phone on a ride? ;-) How'd you sleep last night? Will your ass grow back?

All in all, it sounds like a worthwile endeavor. Maybe I'll try a west coast version of this trip the next time my wife and kids are away from the house for the day.
I am ready for the flamesThioderek
Aug 19, 2001 1:54 PM
The ride was one of the best things I have ever done.

The Mountain Dew was an attempt to bring me back up. I almost threw it up in the parking lot while drinking it.

I slept well. I went over every mile and pedal stroke in my mind while falling asleep.

My ass-I rode today.
I am ready for the flamesmike mcmahon
Aug 19, 2001 1:58 PM
That part about going over the pedal strokes in your mind while falling asleep is nice. I've done the same thing while falling asleep in anticipation of the next day's ride. This is probably a common experience with cyclists. Anyhow, I'm glad to hear there are still people out there who do things that most would consider the height of lunacy just for the hell of it. Nice work.
who cares if it was fast you went far as hell, (nt)GTrider215
Aug 19, 2001 1:47 PM
re: Rather long, but interesting (I think)post-230-40 mile soloDINOSAUR
Aug 19, 2001 2:04 PM
Congrats....I've done some long solo treks in the past, not as long as yours, but they are good rides for the memory bank. It's what riding is all about....
Yeow.... it's Snake Bliskin himselfJohnG
Aug 19, 2001 2:08 PM
That was a KILLER story Snake!~

Give us an update on your next adventure
ROTFL - the best Obscure Reference ever!!!!rollo tommassi
Aug 19, 2001 7:18 PM
And I thought my mtbr name was good movie trivia!!!

Hmm.... I'm dense, can you ..JohnG
Aug 20, 2001 6:09 AM
Rollo, your handle IS obscure! Searched for it on the web and no direct hits. ???? please inform. :)

ride hard
Ahem!'s Snake Pliskin (nm)road weary
Aug 19, 2001 9:24 PM
Plisskin (nm)road weary (typo above)
Aug 19, 2001 9:27 PM
Someone should buy one of these for Thiomike mcmahon
Aug 19, 2001 9:43 PM
in honor of his epic trek:
LOL.... and if Thioderek ...JohnG
Aug 20, 2001 6:03 AM
Thioderek should have first dibs on the "handle" but if he doesn't claim it I will.

I "escaped" from the Big Apple" in 63..... :) OH, road my first bike in Central Park in 57 at the age of 4! Good memories

ride ON
re: Rather long, but interesting (I think)post-230-40 mile soloCliff Oates
Aug 19, 2001 3:11 PM
Assuming your ride is closer to 230 miles, you averaged 18 miles per hour and that's impressive. You're crazy, you know...
re: Rather long, but interesting (I think)post-230-40 mile soloJon Billheimer
Aug 19, 2001 3:45 PM
You may be crazy, but you're one hell of a cyclist! Welcome to the double century club. You get extra points for doing it on your own!
re: Rather long, but interesting (I think)post-230-40 mile solomackgoo
Aug 19, 2001 3:56 PM
Great job, but what is 230-40?
Congrats. A few questions though.....look271
Aug 19, 2001 4:41 PM
While I believe you, when I look at the amount of food/drink that you consumed, I'm amazed. Maybe I eat too much on the bike, but that amount MIGHT have lasted me a 100 miles, nowhere near 200+. Weren't you really hungry? Drinks, too. How big were the bottles of Gatorade? Just curious. I'm not flamin' ya! BTW, I'd have the cell phone, too.
I was gonna add this point too...RhodyRider
Aug 20, 2001 4:57 AM
Your food list seems way too meager for such a distance and pace. You must be a very small person, because this just isn't enough calorie/carb/protein uptake for such a long day. Congrats on making this epic, but next time "eat, poppa, eat; nobody likes a skinny Santa."
Just got back to my computer.Thioderek
Aug 20, 2001 6:20 AM
You are right about the food thing. I should have eaten more. I have a very bad habit of not eating or drinking enough on rides. Believe me, this was a lot for me to eat and drink on a ride.

I have a ritual of consuming large amounts of carbs the night before-mexican food, falafel, lentil soup-and getting a lot of liquids. I am not a big morning breakfast person so I never eat anything until mile 50-60. I was very cognizant of the enormity of the ride, so I was sure to drink and eat more than I wanted.

For the record, I am 6', 163 pounds. I started the ride at 168.

The Gatorade bottles were the liter size for the first one then the smaller ones for the next because I got sick trying to drink the rest of the bottle after I filled my water bottle up.
Why didn't you ask me along? I'd have gone!boy nigel
Aug 19, 2001 4:47 PM
Hey Thioderek,

Just kidding, actually, but neverending kudos for undertaking this superhuman endeavor. My longest solo trek was from my house in the West Village up to the top of Bear Mountain (Seven Lakes Drive to Perkins Drive and to the tower at the top) and back. 110 miles. I did this recently, stopping for about ten minutes to stretch out and refill my bottles at the top. I dug the ride a lot, but wished I'd've had someone along for it. Maybe next time, eh? Or maybe these single-century rides are only warmups for you at this point. ;)

You've every reason to feel immense pride for doing that ride--and for telling every single coworker, relative, person on the street, etc. about it. :)

Top marks, chum, and we really MUST hit Central one day very soon. This week, perhaps? Contact me.

Aug 19, 2001 7:03 PM
Welcome to ultra marathon cycling. It's a long way, huh? They say after 200 miles, nothing changes, as you sort of reach a steady state. I don't really buy that, but to some extent it's true.

I attempted 24 hours last weekend, but bailed at 344 miles with extreme foot pain. Just did too much all July. That was right at 17 hours total time.

Long rides can be very painful, both physically and mentally. Your body is telling to quit, and you can rationalize 100 ways to do so. You gotta just keep moving, as you probably learned.

Aug 20, 2001 3:44 AM
Wow. Over 20 m.p.h for 17 hours. That is amazing to me.
Heres the thingThioderek
Aug 20, 2001 6:25 AM
I did this ride to sort of test myself for the Furnace Creek 508. I did my ride Saturday well. But it was one of the toughest things I have ever done. I am very hesitant to commit myself to the 508 now because I dont know if I can do it. I am hurting today, and I will probably hurt tomorrow.

How does someone recover from a ride like this?

What should I be doing or not doing?

You seem to have some experience here.

BTW-344 miles in 17 hours is an amazing time. How did you prepare for that? What kind of topography did you ride?
re: Rather long, but interesting (I think)post-230-40 mile soloMarcB
Aug 19, 2001 7:49 PM
Congratulations--one heck of a ride!!! I am curious about one part of the ride, however. What specific route did you take from Brooklyn to Orient Point? Thanks!
Route to Orient PointThioderek
Aug 20, 2001 6:41 AM
It was actually very nice. I went out Mrytle Ave. to Union Turnpike, then cut over to the LI service road. When I hit Jericho Turnpike I just followed 25 all the way out.

Very easy and fast.
i want your autographDannyS
Aug 19, 2001 8:34 PM
thats such a sweet story. i dont know if i would have the will power to do that, especially all by myself. congrats you are a better man than i!