Tuesday, September 21, 2010

50 Miles for a good cause!

Saturday I completed a 50 mile bike ride in Kennebunkport, ME for Autism.

3:30 AM is quite early, but as it turns out, I already had a setting in my watch for 3:30AM?   I met up with friends Ethan and Michele @ 5AM and off we went on our 2 hr drive to ride our bikes for 4 hours. Turns out, Ethan ALSO had a 3:30AM already programmed into his alarm! (is there a therapy group for this?).

Michele and Ethan are great riders and agreed to ride "with" me, as I am much slower than they are. So supportive, although riding behind Ethan is like riding behind Andy Schleck! 

The day started off VERY cold! When we left MA, the temperature was in the mid-50's, but by 8AM in Maine, the temp was 41!  We layered up and I looked like a clown, oh well I was warm.  On a good note, each of our long sleeve shirts matched our socks!  There were about 80 riders in total for 2 separate rides, one 25 mile ride and one 50 mile ride.  The ride was absolutely amazing!

We rode along the coast and the temp eventually got up to a very respectable 60!  We even rode past the Bush Compound.  I didn't know it was the former president's house until AFTER I took the picture.

Speaking of taking pictures, I added the bento box on the bike for my Gu Chomps, but it also fits the blackberry nicely! Apologies for the quality of these pics, but its the best I can do while RIDING.  I can take pictures with my RIGHT hand, but have trouble with my left.  The following picture is what happens when I try to do it lefty!  I even have trouble taking the water bottles out lefty, so I should work on that!

Up until Saturday, my longest ride had been around 30 miles.  Leave it to me to increment a ride by 40%.  A normal person would increment by oh, 5%.. not me ;)..

At the beginning of the season I put this ride on my schedule so I would be forced to ride this distance by the end of the year. I fully expected to be in better shape by now, but .. well no buts, I just didn't get to where I expected.

Around mile 30, I thought "ok here we go - uncharted territory" - the first 30  miles were great, had a pretty good avg speed!  - Then Miles 30-38 felt like I did another 30 miles!  I thought, "HEY is my computer broken?? "   My legs started to fatigue a little, but in a good way.  My quads and hip flexors were getting some use that they hadn't seen to date!  My new bike shorts were doing the trick for other parts, so I was going to live.

I had an interesting revelation at Mile 42.38 and yes I know that number exactly.  Michele and Ethan had a discrepancy on their computers so I said "well mine is GPS: 42.38" - then I thought about that.. FORTY TWO MILES?? seriously I just rode FORTY TWO MILES? WOW!  I remember earlier in the year when my 12 mile loop just about killed me.---42.38! ---

That also meant just a few miles to go! woohoo!  We rounded the corner and onto the DIRT ROAD, yea last 1/4 mile on a dirt road was pretty fun (not)!  But luckily I didn't land on my head!  We headed in, and straight for the BBQ!

They were doing announcements, the highest donations, teams, riders that drove the farthest, etc.  Then they mentioned "the youngest rider." - This kid, slouched in his chair raised his hand as the youngest rider.  I thought "hm, I bet you did just the 25" so I went inside and asked how old the youngest was and which ride he did.. turns out he was 15 and did the 25.  WELL!!!!  My riding partner, Ethan is 14 - and rode the 50!  Not only did he ride the 50, but he kept it slow so I could keep up!

I swear, every post I find people that just make this sport awesome, and this spans ALL AGES!!

FYI:   It's not too late to contribute if you would like :)  http://www.firstgiving.com/laurabackus - this should be up for a couple weeks!


  1. You rocked it, Laura! We had such a blast riding with you. And thank you for pointing out that Ethan was the youngest--he was thrilled by the shout-out. :-)

  2. I knew you could do it, now you know you can! You did great, and sounds like you had a great time too. Nothing better than a ride along that beautiful coastline with great friends!