Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Part 3: 180.2km cycle

The bike course is two laps of 90.1km of flat to undulating road, varying from satisfactory to poor condition. It was also starting to warm up. Other cyclists whizzed past but I kept telling myself to take it easy, there was a long way to go - 180.2km, in fact. My plan for the bike was to maintain a steady pace and check my bike computer every hour to make sure I was on target. Eating and drinking was going to be important as I was probably going to be on my bike for at least 7 hours and then would have to get off and run a marathon. So I ate sandwiches, bananas, gels, fruit bars, fruit sticks - some I had with me, some I collected as I rode through aid stations. I exchanged a bidon at every station as well, these were 10km apart, alternating between water and sports drink.

Coming back into Forster at the end of my first lap was amazing. Supporters and onlookers had lined the street and were yelling, blowing whistles and making as much noise as possible. Sure enough when I came to the turnaround point I could hear the tell-tale horn and the shrieks and see the bright yellow t-shirts - Team Cathy was pretty excited!

Back out of town for the next 90.1km and it could be very easy to feel overwhelmed about the distance still to cover and the hours still to go but strangely enough I felt fine. I had some minor discomfort, mainly with a niggly backache, and saddle soreness but otherwise I was feeling fine and starting to pass people - some of those who had passed me earlier. It was beginning to get a lot warmer and drinking was even more important. The hills were still out there and some felt a little steeper than the first time around but the downhills still felt pretty good! Also, as I was heading out for my second lap the lead male competitor, Chris McCormack, was heading into town at the end of his cycle! In fact, I think as I was heading out on the run, he was finishing but I digress..............

6 hours and 51 minutes later and I had finished the cycle and was changing into my run gear. I took a little longer with this transition, about 12 minutes, but why rush? I had about 7 hours before the final cut-off so I stretched, had a drink, ate some potato crisps, went to the toilet.

to be continued..........

2 comments:

Ewen said...

12 minutes! That's almost as long as Rachelle takes to get changed for a run.

Jen_runs said...

Looking forward to Part 4 !