Every Second Counts
Shortly after the Every Second Counts Challenge we received this letter from Peter, a Mountain Biking Australia reader in Perth.
(Thanks for the note Peter. Glad you had a good time. I've put a Garmin 500 unit in the mail to keep you on track!)
Always look forward to Mountain Biking Australia arriving in the mail.
After completing the challenge I am inspired to put pen to paper.
My Every Second Counts Challenge.
Take one Specialized XC Expert (that’s the bike not me) 1788 kms 31 days (average 57.7 ks a day), piece of piss.
How disillusioned I was! I was averaging 120-150 ks a week before I started.
The plan was up at 4.30-5.00 am 40 odd ks before work and 30 odd ks after work. The odd rest day during the week and extra ks on Saturday and Sunday.
I forgot how much family and work take up your cycling time.
Started out 50/50 limestone forestry tracks and bitumen. Gritty wet limestone dust is not good for suspension and gear components.
More exercise and less sleep is not good for the body.
Bring out the spare rims, Continental 1.9 semi slicks, lock out the suspension and hit the bike paths and road.
First week 300 + ks including 105 on a sunny Sunday.
Second week COLD / WET / HUNGRY. The sun came out again on Sunday 131 ks, 40 in the bush and was feeling pretty good.
420 ks for the week and my legs have finally stopped hurting.
Third week started with 20 ks slow and easy no real stiffness. Monday arvo while walking down a slight decline get soft tissue tear in front of leg near shin bone.
My physio says it’s a typical overuse injury and just the body compensating. Acupuncture, massage, partially shaved leg and Rock tape.
Two days rest and back on the bike.
Saturday 11th August take off to Dunsborough for the Perth MTB club XC race 6 . The last race for the year and for we supermasters a 2 hour + 1Lap Enduro.
Leave home and 3 hours later straight to the Bootleg Brewery for lunch. Great sponsors of the PMBC events. I don’t drink but by all accounts the beer is pretty good.
For me it is all about the food and as usual it is delicious.
Leisurely arvo ride through the beautiful green countryside to Dunsborough for a lap of the track.
Everyone is all smiles if a little weary of some skittish gravel sections. We shouldn’t have worried.
Forecast for Sunday was showers. (understatement)
The showers started in the middle of the night and fell in bucket loads.
Roll up Sunday morning the kids race is cancelled due to bad weather. Predications are for gale force winds between 10.00-12.00 we start at 9.00. WOOHOO!
While trying to keep warm and get prepared the Merida display tent gets upended in strong gust.
2 hours and 9 mins of rain and MUD and MUD which was becoming like glue. Damn it was fun!
Get home Monday and find suspension bearings are stuffed. Take bike to LBS ( I am not good mechanically). They are flat out busy and will get it back Thursday night.
No riding for 3 days, my chances of finishing are looking slim.
Explain to my wife , who has given amazing support to attempt let alone finish . Continually washing cycle gear, extra food (banana and walnut bread) moral support.
“I will be glad when you finish”
Margo suggests the old clunker in the shed. This goes back post lower disc back surgery. Hi rise handlebars, suspension pole and padded seat.
Wack 60 psi in the tyres, fit spare clipins, adjust handle bars to a rackish angle. ( they look like bull horns) Won’t be too embarrassing it’ll be dark anyway.
10 Day’s to go 800 ks . I will have to do a big one Sunday. Crank out 160 ks on the old girl until get my bike back.
Friday 98 ks Saturday 113 ks Sunday 217.7 ks . Three days left and I am sure I will finish the last 220 ks.
Last ride on the Wednesday night I catch up with the Joondalup Cycle guys for a blast through the bush in the rain.
We have had below average winter rainfall in Perth. Always is raining when I ride of late.
Surprisingly 60% of the 1788 are ridden in the dark.
To anybody else who finished, I applaud you. Lots of lonely hours on a bike is good for soul but definitely not your arse.
3 days rest and then the Wembley Cycles 6 Hour. Tried twice haven’t finished one yet, third time lucky?
8 laps 5.43.42 and 92 klms and feeling good.
I read often in this mag about lighter weight bling. If your an average rider like myself and you want to go faster.
Get on your bike and ride the bastard , often? IT WORKS!