Sunday, June 29, 2008

That Shiggity Wasn't No Joke - BSG

Huggy: "What's the deal pickles? Is everything kosher?"
Tom: "Everything is kosher."

- Huggy Lowdown & Tom Joyner on the Tom Joyner Morning Show

Huggy aka The Celebrity Snitch likes to use the word "shiggity" on the TJMS. The TJMS is a nationally syndicated radio show, that I love listening to in the mornings. Huggy is one of the frequent guests to the program. Obviously he can't say "shit" on the show, so he uses shiggity. I thought about Huggy yesterday during the Blood, Sweat, and Gears century ride (actually its a 103 miles). I tell you the truth. That shiggity was no joke. That ride broke me down. This is the 3rd year in a row, I've done this ride, and I was an hour slower than last year. The official results haven't been published yet, but I think I came in about 7 1/2 hours. Last year I came in at 6:24 and felt strong. I even did a 30 minute brick run after the ride last year.

I think the biggest thing that got me on this year's ride was that I just wasn't as fit as prior years. I was looking back over my workout logs and last year I had some big bike weeks in the weeks before BSG, while this year I've only done one century and that was pretty slow. That's why I thought about that line ala Huggy. You can't play around w/ BSG, "cus that shiggity ain't no joke". That ride is to be fully respected. You can't treat it like, "well it'll just be a good training session". You can't be half-stepping, no sir, not with BSG.

All in all, even though it was brutal, I'm still glad I did it. I went up the day before and stayed w/ a buddy of mine and his family at their vacation home in the Virgina mountains. He did the half-century version of the ride. Their vacation home is high up in the VA mountains just off the VA Creeper Trail. The Creeper Trail is a former railroad line that has been converted to a multi-use trail. The setting was amazing, there's beautiful creek that runs right behind the property, then there's a bridge to cross the creek and the Creeper Trail is just on the other side. Also he told me there's an access point to the Applachian Trail fairly close too.

Well we got the race site, got organized, and were ready for the start. Wait, let me digress. One of the local NBC Today Show anchors here, Donald Jones, is an avid cyclist. He's got a pretty cool blog, and I posted a comment earlier this week and he replied. So I bumped into him at packet pick-up and we chatted for a minute. He did the race last year and we finished pretty close to one another, with him coming in a 6:26. So I got him by 2 minutes. Then at the start, we were a couple of bikes over from one another, so I gave him one of those Obama fist bumps. Dude is a strong rider and early on one of the climbs, he was going strong and I couldn't hang on. I'm sure he beat his time from last year.

The ride for me can be best describe as 2 gears. I was in the 34x25 for a whole lot and I was in the 50x12 for a short while. BSG has over 13K of climbing so, I spent a lot of time grinding up the mountain roads. The most strenuous section is called Snake Mountain. The grade hits like 20% and its later in the ride around mile 65, so you're somewhat toasted at this point. The last two years, I was able to ride up this section, but this year, I had to dismount my bike and walk part of it. That was humbling. There were other walkers, but I really wanted to ride up that thing. Next year I betcha I'll be ready.

Next year will be different. I want to do this ride again, and train properly for it. A couple of things. Definitely more training miles. I need to be hitting some 200+ mile weeks like last year. I was getting ready for IMMoo last year, so I was really focused and had some good miles in my legs by the time BSG rolled around. Also, I will not be so heavy. I'm tipping the scales at 182 lbs and last year I got down to 175 for during my prep for IMMoo. Its not a lot of weight, but those extra lbs are absolutely murder for climbing. Every time I came to a climb, the lactic acid jumped up along with my HR and I was feeling the pain. I even got some cramps a few times later in the race which is indicative of being under trained.

All in all, it was a great experience. The downhills were fun, and the views were amazing. Even though I didn't do nearly as well as I would've liked. I feel blessed that I can even get out and participate in something like this. I had a spectacular homestay, ran into some of my buddies I train with, and I keep the rubber side down (that's cycling-speak for no crashes).



Lloyd said...

looks like we were both up in the same neck of the woods yesterday. sounds like a great ride. i wouldn't give your fitness concerns much credence. the weather was deceptive. the humidity zapped me more than a bit.

rob said...

Big L, where you racing? Man BSG tore me up. I even saw the sweeper truck a couple of times near the end. It was funny, cus dude even had 2 brooms stuck in the front grill of the truck

Donald said...

Rob- Nice post buddy! You got me on the Ironman thing... Shiggity!
Oh,oh, oh, it's the TJMS... that story had me cracking up.
We'll have to ride sometime. I have a crazy schedule with work and family but maybe we can catch a weekend ride. I live in Apex and ride some good hills between there and Durham. I'm sure you're familiar with the Lystra Road loop. Great meeting you and I'll add your blog to my blog roll if that's ok? Talk soon, DJ

rob said...

Hey Donald, its definitely cool to add me to your blog roll. Thanks bro. If you get some Thursday afternoons free, there's a small group ride that I do on Thursdays at 5:30 you're welcome join us.

We meet at the Cisco parking lot (Kitt Creek & Louis Stephens) for a ~39 miler out to Jordan Lake/Fearington Rd. area. We usually average around 18-19 mph. Though this Thursday we're skipping it to do the SpinCycle Firecracker 100K on Friday.

Donald said...

Cool... I'm headed out right after the newscast for the Firecracker ride as well. I'll look for you there!