Faithful readers of this blog will have to depend on Rider One to shake off his blogging lethargy and keep up with his "Ride of the Week" pledge and hope that Rider Two is willing to give up his boycott of blogging until all drugs are out of cycling, because I, Rider Three, am officially on a hiatus to ride the Leadville 100.
I tried, but failed, to finish Leadville 3 years ago. There were lots of good reasons that I didn't make it, but it was also deeply frustrating, annoying, disheartening and difficult to have traveled that far with the whole fam-damily and then abandon. In preparation that year I completed the Tour of Pain (200 miles/1 day), Seattle-to-Portland (204 miles/1 day - in 10 hours total time), and RAMROD (156 miles, 3 major passes/1 day), so I thought I was ready, but I still managed to screw it up.
This year, I took a very different approach, including doing a lot more mountain biking and more intensity, instead of just "long" rides. I got my Garmin blogged about elsewhere and started using it on July 1. In the last six weeks, here are the stats - 82 hours of rides covering 1,100 miles and burning over 33,000 calories.
Could I have done more, probably not in the last six weeks, but probably yes in the prior six months. In any case, I think I am ready and as long as the altitude doesn't completely mess me up, I feel pretty good about finishing inside of 12 hours and collecting that belt buckle.
I will let you know.
Win, place or show, however, I owe a lot of thanks to some people.
First, to my wife, who has tolerated a lot of time, money and energy being devoted to this.
To my kids who have tolerated a lot of time on the bike and thus away from them.
To the crew at Two Wheel Transit who have witnessed my full-on fussing about a bike, wheels, tires, accessories, gears, bottom brackets, you name it, and keep being pleasant, supportive and helpful. Love the Superfly!
To Rider One, who served as pseudo-coach when I put together plans and has been willing to show up over and over to ride along with those plans (and yes, I will forgive you eventually for not going even though you registered).
To DD from Spokane, who finished last year in 11 hours 58 minutes 40 seconds, and who has been training like a mad man to improve upon that finish and encouraging me to do the same since January.
To the Tacoma Boys, PW, who has signed up or signed me up for multiple madnesses over the years, including being there three years ago and also failing to finish (Dude, how many times do we have to go over this? Completing the course in under 13 hours doesn't count as "finishing" when there is a 12-hour cut-off . . .) and PK, a first-timer who is likely to show us up dramatically.
I will try to get up a post this weekend with the news, one way or the other, and will be back to blogging later in August. In the meantime, keep the rubber side down.