One of my goals in the next few years was to start doing triathlons. I swam for many years, and had started running about five years ago. But a bike? I had never been on a road bike…until I started test riding them in December. And then acquired one, over Christmas.
I rode as much as I could this winter, which was maybe once a week if I was lucky–probably far less than that. And then I signed up for a triathlon in late April–Rumpus in Bumpass. But I knew I needed more time on the bike before the tri, so when some friends invited me to go to the Metric Century (100 kilometer) ride in Bethany Beach (Ocean to Bay), it sounded like a great idea.
I’d been in my clip-in pedals exactly twice prior to this (thankfully, I found them to be pretty easy to adjust to). And had never ridden in a group. I needed to break in my bike in a ‘real’ ride and see how it went.
I really liked Delaware, a lot more than I was anticipating. It’s a pretty drive to get there from DC, and the off-season in April was pretty quiet. They also have bulk candy stores…you can win me over to just about anywhere with some gummy candy. You know, gummy frogs, eggs, teeth, fighter jets, snakes, brains. It’s my Achilles heel. No mom, I never ate gummy penguins and cheese curds for dinner in college…ever…
And, the metric century was so much fun! Not only did riding 62 miles convince me I was ready for 24 miles in two weeks, it gave me a good barometer of how my newly acquired activity was going and what I needed to work on (unsurprisingly, hills). While there is no drafting in triathlons, the friends at the metric century kindly let me draft…a lot. And drafting is seriously the best thing ever. I never knew or thought it would make such a difference. Plenty of rest stops along the way to get some fresh Gatorade and a snack…where it’s cool to wear spandex.
Third, food. While I took a nap instead of heading to the brewery, Dogfish has a large bar in Rehoboth that I’d love to get back to. And we had a fantastic meal that evening at Salt Air (excellent crab cakes). Plus a delicious smoothie and of course gummy candy…thank goodness for biking 62 miles earlier that day?
I would love to go back next year for another metric century…or maybe a century ride. I was pretty ready to get off the bike after 62, but I’ve been spending many hours on the bike during the week so 100 might seem more doable in the future. And I’d definitely consider going to Rehoboth in the future for a weekend out of the city in the spring or fall–it’s quaint and gorgeous. Plus, is a beach ever a bad thing?
More to come on my first triathlon, Rumpus in Bumpass, soon…