Sunday, August 06, 2006


Well, I set out to do 85 miles, ended up doing 87, b/c I stopped in a little town to replenish my Gatorade and water and couldn't find my way back to the bike trail.

Yeah, bike trail. I decided, rather than brave the damn hills again for 85 miles, I'd drive 45 minutes to the, um, forget what it's called, Allegheny Alliance rail-trail or something. It's dirt but it's smooth and flat. I underestimated how much work dirt and flat would be and how hot it was going to get. I think I didn't take enough sodium. I should have known. I got converted to sodium last summer by Nancy. I just didn't think it was going to get that hot or that I'd be working that hard. I should have known, when I finished off my Gatorade after about 50 miles and had to get more. I ate plenty, drank plenty, but started feeling really crappy with about 20 miles to go. Got off the bike and sat on the ground. Then put my Camelback on the ground as a pillow and lay down. Still felt crappy. I was a little worried. My hands weren't swollen but I was sure it wasn't dehydration or low sugar, I'd been taking both food and Gatorade, just not enough of my Succeed Capsules, one an hour, when previously on a hot day I've taken 3 an hour. I just didn't think it was that hot. Or that I was working that hard. I took a capsule with just a swallow of water, and another 20 minutes later, and another 20 minutes after that, and started to feel much better.

The fun part was that when I started feeling sick I had been riding for about 8 miles w/ a guy who was on his way to Washington, D.C. from Seattle. This was totally cool. Before I started conking out I asked him a lot about it, since I want to do that some day. He asked me about Ironman and said he absolutely could not imagine doing such a thing.

When I had to get off the bike to rest he stayed with me. I think he was worried. Actually so was I. I really felt crappy. He stayed with me and we biked slowly to the next trailhead, a couple miles. Rested again. He asked me out to dinner. I couldn't eat and I really just wanted to go home. He bought me ice cream, which I couldn't eat. I wanted chips but the ice cream shack didn't have any. He looked like Kenny Rogers. His last name was Landis, which didn't click in my mind till I was in the truck on my way home. We had even talked about Floyd and doping and everything, and it still didn't kick in. He had his name on a "Caution" triangle on the back of his bike. I saw it but it never registered. After the ice cream we walked back across the parking lot and my HR went from 90 to 114 with that easy walk. I called my husband to try to get a ride home but I had the truck and he couldn't think of anyone who might be able to come get me. I called our son. He was working. Called our d-i-l... no answer. Night shift nurse, she was sleeping. So Kenny Rogers Landis and I got back on the bikes and rode slowly, another 9 miles to go before where I was parked. I got a flat tire. Whatever can go wrong, will. But after changing the flat I guess everything had kicked in and I felt pretty good, was able to ride normally again. It started to sprinkle. I asked Kenny if I could give him a lift to where he hoped to camp. He said only if I'd go to dinner with him. Damn. I would have liked to but I needed to get home. He stayed with me till I got to my truck. He gave me a hug. Damn. Eyes the color of your task bar. My age.

I got home without incident, had soup, a banana, a little bag of chips, Gatorade, an Airborne tablet, water, I'm peeing a normal color, just tired.

So tomorrow and the next day I'm working 7-4 and taking both days off training. That's good recovery time.

Lessons learned:
  • Don't go out too fast.
  • Don't underestimate the effort on a flat course. Especially a dirt/packed sand one. It wasn't real rough, definitely doable, but it wasn't asphalt either.
  • Keep up with electrolytes, 2 capsules/hr on a cooler day, 3 when it's hot. (Found out it was high 80's.) I learned this last summer but got stupid. Must be the hair. I think IQ points adhere to gray roots and gradually grow out of your head.
  • Finally: Don't get so nauseated I can't go out to dinner with a cool biker guy my age. We'd have had so much to talk about! Could have been the proverbial 2 ships passing in the night.

Next time I'll know better. I won't have a sodium bonk again.

Now you all can yell at me....
Ellie, well-chastened


runr53 said...

So... You want to be yelled at! Nope you probably already feel yucky enough without me adding my two cents, but if I was gonna... Rest well! Run Good!

Comm's said...

had a similiar ride on Sunday, though I only completed 66% of my ride instead of 95% like you.

TriFeist said...

Well, if you're going to have a crappy ride, at least you had a cute guy to get you back to your car. Hope you recover soon.

Dawn - Pink Chick said...

A crappy ride, but heh a cute guy. Gotta love it.

TxSkatemom said...

I won't go all Mom on you, but I'm glad you're OK.

Never mind, I will go all Mom on you -- don't do that again! Be careful out there!

Rachel said...

Ick. Sounds awful. Frustrating.

I was sad to hear about the poor bear. I would have cried. I hate when animals die. Especially wild ones b/c ultimately, it is because of humans.