Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Vermont Ride 2008

I'm a bit spent at the moment. Actually, I'm really spent. I have that dehydrated, nauseous post IM feeling. Nice! I wrote about the history of the Vermont ride last year and at the moment, I'm too lazy to dig through the archives and bookmark it, but if you are interested, it's there somewhere. For a cliff notes version, Farber and I started the ride in 97' while I was training for Hawaii and I wanted to do a destination ride and Farber right away suggested McNiels Pub in Brattleboro, VT, so we packed some backpacks and rode up on a Saturday, then rode home the next day, making it a 280 mile round trip from my old house. From my house in Monroe on the current route, it's now a 298 mile round trip. I've done the ride every year since 97'. It's a tradition now, an annual. Baker has been with me on every ride since 98'. We've had big groups do the ride but the past two years, we have kept it really small and made it a spontaneous thing for when we both had two open back-to-back days.

We decided to do Wednesday to Thursday this year, because Baker has the summer off, and I had a lot of clients away this week. Jeff Molson, who has done this ride twice before was joining us. He did a write up that will be posted on my home page - definitely check it out for his view.

The weather was perfect, and I felt really solid Wednesday riding up to Brattleboro. Even with a headwind the whole way, I held one of my highest average speeds ever for this ride, just over 22 mph. Granted we did take two long breaks, one at the Starbucks in Simsbury 62 miles into the ride and another in North Hampton at the 102 mile mark. I rolled through the 112 mile mark in 5 hours 8 minutes. Jeff and I did a 30 minute transition run then the three of us headed out for some great food - yes, I know that's an oxymoron with Brattleboro, but we found a brand new restaurant that was super. We chased down dinner with some beer at the Flat Street Brew House before catching a cab back to the hotel.

We were all a bit dazed and confused rolling out this morning at 7am, but that's par for the course on day two of the VT ride. I found myself alone 5 minutes into the ride and put on my ipod with a bunch of new music downloaded. The wind stayed the same as the previous day meaning we had a nice little tailwind and I got in a great groove again. Day two, I stop quickly just to refill bottles and then it's right back to riding. I'm always anxious for some reason on day two just to get home. With the tailwind, I was holding 25 mph through most of Mass. I went through 112 miles today in 4:49 - definitely my fastest return trip to date on the VT ride. It was a bizarre ride though. My legs felt great but I felt nauseous the whole trip. I had a decent size breakfast before leaving of a Cliff Bar, a bagel with peanut butter, a bowl of cheerios and some OJ. I drank gatorade and water all day and had two snickers with almonds and two cokes along the ride - nothing that should make me feel queasy like I did.

I wasn't paying attention in Thomaston and took a little three mile detour making the ride 152 miles today. I covered it in 6 hrs 44 minutes. I was 30 years old when I started this ride and I rode my fastest/best this year, eleven years later which is very cool.

Funny, as nauseous as I felt, it didn't stop me from getting a big cheeseburger, french fries and shake for dinner!

The funny thing about this ride is that the course isn't anything great. In fact, there are some really shitty sections that we have to ride through. And we may ride alone most of the time. But we always have fun, and traditions are important. So I can check the VT ride off my list for 2008 which feels good. But man, the years certainly fly by and before you know it, we'll be back on rt. 10 in 2009.


Anonymous said...

I could do this ride 40 minutes faster!!...Mr. cat. 1 !

Eric said...

you have to pedal Badger - nothing motorized allowed.

Besides, you roadies don't know how to ride solo! You need a wheel to suck.


badger here.

that post wasnt me.

one of your posts was a "tempo" workout at 350w for 30 minutes times 3.

thats impressive.

what were your actual averages for those 3 intervals?

Eric said...

averages in terms of what? mph? Normalized power?


average power.
normalized power.
average cadence.
average speed.

the people want to know.

also. what speedo size do you wear? x-small?

Eric said...

for my 3 X 30 min session (avg's over the 90 min):

Avg power: 338 watts
Normalized Power: 358 watts
Avg Cadence: 79 rpms
Avg speed; 24.8 mph

I did these around the reservoire; warm-up down 59 and through Easton beginning at the Hi-Ho off exit 44 of the Merrit on the black rock turnpike and went left on 59 then up Lyons Plains, ... So it was a rolling course. I aim to stay seated and aero during this session and to keep the watts below 400 on the inclines but above 300 on the declines which can be a real bitch.


agreed. the easy part is the hills and the hard part is staying on the gas on the descents.

impressive numbers.

btw.. for the vermont ride... i'll sit on you and sprint for all the town line signs.

zip up and show you the double barrel salute.

(go double barrel salute)

for state lines i would come up with something extra special.

Eric said...

We already have the tradition of last one across the state lines buys the first and second rounds in Brattleboro, so if you ever do this ride Badger, bring your credit card.


np. i assumed they would want my credit card to hold the tab until you arrive to actually pay... (4 hours later)

Anonymous said...

You guys ride with ipods? That's safe why?

I hope your helmets don't get in the way.

Eric said...

who said it was safe? I'm not recommending it.

Fits nicely under my helmet by the way.

Anonymous said...

freakin sick.

John Hirsch

radhika said...

The vermont ride is really very thrilling and amazing.It needs some power and should be brave enough to do it.Should have lots of practices.

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