Dwight Watt - Watt Thoughts #144 11/20/2007

#144- Cruising in the Country Bike Ride (Watt Thoughts)

November 10th I once again sat out top try to ride my bicycle for 100 miles in an organized event. This time I did not get to ride much in the previous couple of weeks with the change of time and when I got home not much daylight left. However I still seem in good shape as I still am doing other exercise regularly.

The event was on Saturday in Claxton, Georgia and was to start at 8 AM but registration was earlier so John and I planned to arrive at 7:30 and start as quickly as possible. The rules also stated that riders would not be able to ride after dusk, but we could start early. We got thru registration and had bikes unloaded and we were on the road at exactly 8AM.

The weather was perfect that day or as close as possible for a bike ride. It was sunny with highs about 70, so long sleeve shirt to start but it went after an hour and I was in shorts whole ride. Claxton is near the coast so it is a relatively flat ride with very minor hills. No mountains like in the Chattooga Century I did in summer. There was a light breeze so kept you from getting hot.

I did well for the first 4 hours. I had known when I started that I would have to average 10 mph all day to accomplish 100 miles (a century) as 6PM was basically cutoff time. At noon I realized that I would not do 100 that day as I was about 15 minutes off pace. At stop in Cobbtown they served hotdogs and chips and the usual water and Gatorade (or PowerAde). I took my time eating and continued on. As 1 approached at 49 miles I had both thighs cramp (I do not recall thigh cramps before, I have had plenty at night in calves and Charlie horses). Stopped and drank a good bit of Gatorade (cramps did not let me get off bike or spread legs enough to lay it down so drank while straddling bike). Felt OK then and continued. At next stop in Collins told SAG driver I was going to quit about 65-70 miles and to watch for me so he could give me a ride back.

Leaving Collins to Reidsville was a stretch of over 5 miles that was absolutely flat, well paved that was a joy to ride. It is back road between towns. Rode thru Reidsville and stopped at rest stop out of town. Continued ride and decided 65 miles would do for that day. Sixty two miles was my previous best which I did in Summerville in summer. I rode on along and got my 65 and called it a day. The SAG truck soon appeared and took me back to Claxton. John made his 100 miles.

Cruising in the Country in Claxton is a great spot to do 100 miles and I am looking to next November to do the whole 100. I will try to [practice more next time. May get my 100 somewhere else first. Not a bad year for having just started riding a bike again after about 30 years. I rode in 5 organized events 225 miles (Dublin 50, Metter 25, Statesboro 25, Summerville 62 and Claxton 65). I was real sore after Dublin, but mildly on the rest. Next year will be new year and we will see where I go.



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