Austin’s Birthday Century

100 mile riders for Austin's 16th birthday.100mi This morning was a century ride for Austin’s 16th birthday as requested a few weeks ago. There was supposed to be a breeze from the west, but it was from the North, getting us all the way up A1A to Ft Pierce. I arrived at the bunker lot first, 4:15am. I had a secret stash of cupcakes and birthday candles for the conclusion of the ride, recovery drinks in a newly purchased cooler, and the 110% leg compression ice inserts. Plenty to remember while getting ready – unfortunately I had my eye off the ball in forgetting the Shimano clip-in cycling shoes. Austin and Troy had all their gear ready. I didn’t feel good about letting the other two riders wait for me, so I rode the bike unclipped with Aasics Gel Nimbus, an older pair I had with speed laces for that quick transition I’d be needing! I had the NR headlamp, the flashing light on my bars and two rear facing blinking lights. We noticed the wind situation once on Jupiter Island, this was not going to subside. Hopefully the other half of the forecast would be wrong, too – saying it would shift to the SW and blow in our face all the way home. (That never happened.) I kept a good 19-20 mph pace when I could see the speedometer, I didn’t have a cheek light running for this ride so I missed being able to see the computer. We rode onto Hutchinson Island, where at approximately mile 32 my rear tire went flat, forcing a 10 minute delay while I fixed it. I believe those tires are in need of replacing, they are Suzanne’s original white wheels from her Felt. We pedaled into the breeze thru the Ft Pierce turn by the inlet. The road that runs parallel to the inlet is in horrible shape, it’s reduced to one lane only for construction. It’s a nasty road surface in the process of being repaired. We stopped at Cumberland Farms, I wanted to snap a picture and txt it to Charlotte,  to see if she recognized the spot. Maybe not, it was light with us leaving an hour later than usual, she may only know the look of the turnaround in the dark! I massaged my feet from standing on the pedals with old shoes, it felt like riding on BMX pegs. Very much causing a cramping sensation in my feet, left one more than the right. I refilled and balanced my two regular Eco-Drink bottles, had a few Clif Builder bars and off we went to ride home on the intracoastal side. Now with a slight tail wind, our speed was always over 20. Austin wanted to lead for the firat 12 miles, that was good. We kept ourselves together and at a nice pace – thru the Hutchinson Island bridges, with a stop to pee at Sandsprit Park. Coming out of that area towards Port Salerno, we joined in behind Erica and two other guys, following them down to Dixie highway at Gomez, where we opted to go straight. Troy’s first 100 miler was also his first episode on US-1 with the rolling hills. I had a nice burst of energy here, going fast 23-26 for a few miles up to County Line Rod. There I slowed and let us all catch up. We rode back down A1A and knew we would be short on miles if we turned in at the bunker, so a quick lap around the duck pond was enough to finish the 100 miles. My legs felt good, my body was well setup for sunscreen so no tanning or burn, a good day. The carrot cake cupcake surprise went over well, but you definitely needed a drink to wash those rich and moist  things down!

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