Monday, June 21, 2010

Lumberjack 100 race report

When I showed up to the Lumberjack course with a singlespeed Friday afternoon, I received one of two questions. Most of the racers with gears were like, "why?" and all of the singlespeeders were like, "what gear ratio?"

"32x18," I'd reply....and then freak out a little bit on the inside. The only training I had done on the bike was the day before, where I pointed my new bike up the biggest hill that I could find and mashed my brains out to get to the top.

At the start line I lined up near the front, but didn't pay that much attention to where anyone else was. I was racing in the women's open class, but knew that I was going to have to race my own race. In fact, I was mostly thinking about my coach at the start, and wondering what she would say if she knew that I decided to jump on a SS and race it for 100 miles. I figured that she would have to approve since she's the 24 hour solo SS National Champ :-)

And then we were off! The start was slightly maddening as it was on a completely flat paved road for 1.5 miles. It's a good way to break up the field but I felt like no matter how fast I was pedaling I was moving backwards. Finally I hit dirt and I was able to get moving. The first climb had a train of people going up it, and I was forced to dismount and run to the top. I started to worry that I had been too over-confident in thinking that I could race a hundred miler on a SS, but those worries didn't last long...

I was having SO MUCH fun!!!!

Photos by Jack Kunnen!!!

Personally I like lap races best, so of course I really liked the 3-lap format of the Lumberjack course. Riding the Selma was awesome and I noticed that my riding style was much more aggressive then what it is with gears. I initially wanted the Selma for strength training and I think riding it will help me get faster in general. Momentum became my best friend!

Don't get me wrong, the race was not easy by any means. The course was really challenging, and at times downright hard! I was fighting muscle cramps, and there were a few climbs that required every single body part to get up them. There was actually one sandy, steep climb that was so hard to get up I was almost at a complete standstill. I was so stubborn about not wanting to get off my bike that I found myself trying to throw my head forward to get some extra forward movement. It was ridiculous. I couldn't believe how much upper body I was using throughout the day. My arms never got that sore though, so I'm pretty sure the upper body workouts that I've been doing with Jason are already starting to work!

I continued to catch people throughout the race, and finished in 3rd place, 9 minutes behind 1st. My finishing time was 8:29, which was my fastest time ever!!! I didn't race with a heart rate monitor or watch, and had to laugh when I saw my lap times. They were pretty darn consistent!

Lap 1: 2:49:57
Lap 2: 2:49:23
Lap 3: 2:49:42

SO happy with my new bike!!!
Podium pic...
This picture of Cheryl with her axe and me with my Lumberjack scarf cracks me up. I feel like we should be on a poster advertising for Northern Michigan!
After the race we headed back home for lots of pizza. And the next day we were all up early to eat again.

Nothing tastes better the morning after a hundred miler then lots of coffee and lots of pancakes!
The pancakes at The Real Food Cafe are huge!!!

It was a great weekend of racing and friends. I'm already plotting to get Namrita and Eddie back up here to hang out. Also, a big thanks to everyone at the race for all of the cheers. There's no place like racing at home!

Next up? Cascade Creampuff in Oregon. The Dos Niner is already on it's way out West!


LyndaW said...

Great work! You know I have a soft spot for single speeds ;-) Your Selma looks beautiful.

Jim said...

Wow! What consistent laps. You really paced yourself perfectly. Congratulations

Dave Byers said...

Viva la Cream Puff!

Karen said...

Awesome race out there! and amazing consistency!! good luck with the rest of your season

Cellarrat said...

Damn that Pancake is as big as Nam's head!