As I mentioned yesterday, I have been feeling like my training efforts have been a bit substandard so to speak. That's not to say that I haven't been riding hard here and there, but the times I'm supposed to be going out for a truly hard ride/race simulation, I've been giving only 80-90% effort and getting done with the ride having some gas left in the tank.
Last night I was lucky enough to get a preview of the new PRC Papa John's route. Its similar to last years Wednesday night route, but with a new start location and some interesting routing to get the group out to the same area as last year. It should be a great time.
Roughly 8-10 of us rolled out from Rassy's and some indecision left myself and Courtney off the front and on our own. We rolled a light or two the others didn't make and even with a slow down on the way out to our loop, we didn't see the pack again. Once we hit the loop which consists of 6.75 miles of rolling hills interspersed with a couple decent climbs, I hammered it. Soon enough I was on my own completely which was fine by me as I wasn't planning on it being otherwise. A good breeze out of the west at 15mph hampered things a bit, but in reality didn't even phase me compared to the struggle from the night before. I was on the cross bike to keep things a bit more challenging and to get some additional seat time in prep for taking it on the Almanzo 100.
The first lap clicked off in 22:05 and I kept on it for another lap finishing out in 22:29. Pretty even considering I was covering almost 7 miles each lap. By the end of the 2nd lap I had hoped to catch the rest of the group, but alas they were nowhere in sight. I was feeling the burn pretty good and satisfied with having put in a good effort. I guess my designation for a good effort is determined by how light headed and slightly nauseous I feel at the end before I start recovering. There was definitely a tinge of burn in the stomach last night and just enough bending around the edges to call it quits. I backed things off a bit and still moved along at a decent clip back to my truck. 31 miles and a shade under 2 hours off the clock. I did meet up with a few riders still chatting back at the shop and talked to them for a minute.
After that, it was off to the nirvana of tacos, beer, and buddies. Tom joined me for some chatting as we chowed on tacos and Courtney showed up a bit later as well since he had a few extra miles needed to finish out his century. A good effort rewarded by some indulgent fueling. Probably not the best solution on keeping myself lean and mean, but you just gotta enjoy the spoils sometimes.