I was told by the president of the ‘Kiwi Randonneuring Club’ that riding a 300km or more bike ride in 1 day is all mental. He is mental!! It is definitely physical. Ok, ok, I know things went against me with the 200kms of my 335km ride being a strong headwind with gale force gusts, and getting 3 punctures in the dark, which led me to needing a motel in Havelock, at the 236km mark. The unrelenting wind and punctures meant I got to Havelock in 16 ½ hours instead of the 14 hours I estimated it should have taken. So there was no way I was going to get home by midnight.
|St Arnaud with fresh snow on the hills.|
|Mountains to the sea - Picton and the ferry crossing between the Island.|
I woke up to a storm, the wind was shuddering the building and it was raining. Once I saw a blue patch of sky, I was off. The wind often pushed me to a standstill and the extra effort required pushing into it wore me out. My nether regions were chaffed and bruised feeling, and my feet were swollen with the hard pushing on the pedals. Luckily I ate and drank well; (I am wheat, dairy, sugar, bananas and dates intolerant) and I stretched the front and back of my legs every time I stopped for food, so I was able to keep going and got home tired and sweaty.
|My staples of cold cooked wheat free sausages, my home made oat slice, and nut bars.|
A decision is made – I am not doing the Paris / Brest / Paris. There is no way I can ride 24 hours a day and night with no sleep, no shower and on a raw backside and hurting all over. I should stick to what I am good at – long distance touring. I’d love to do the Trans Am ride across America or the Transcontinental across Europe – these events would suit me perfectly. I could ride 13 hours a day and actually get a sleep at night and a shower, surely that’s not too much to ask? Perhaps Niel could do the Paris / Brest / Paris, and I could do one of the others? Cycling should be a challenge and an adventure, but it should also be enjoyable.
|Pointing at my smiling face.|