- Drafting really matters: During the century ride I was losing my breath just to get my speed up to 11-12 miles/hour; however, when I started drafting I was able to easily maintain speeds between 17-20 miles/hour. I finished the century in 6 hours and averaged just around 16 miles/hour. I wish I had also drafted during the RBC Century earlier this year. Makes me wonder what my training rides would look like if I ride in a group.
- Paddling off your saddle frequently really helps: Six hours of riding and no saddle discomfort or pain! I was getting off the saddle and paddling standing up whenever I was able to, so it was releasing any pressure or saddle discomfort. Sometimes I was getting up every five minutes. I was doing so mainly to keep up pace with the peloton I was drafting behind. this is something I need to keep doing during my usual rides.
- Carbs run out quicker than you think: I was eating well at every rest stop. Chocolate cakes, ice-creams, bananas, energy bars, etc. Still within an hour after the ride, my stomach was grumbling and I had to rush for a turkey sub.
- Warm clothing after an endurance ride is a must: I got sick after the RBC century for not putting on layers, it was bad and had to make a trip to the ER. This time around, I was fully prepared with a beanie covering my scalp and ears, thermals underneath a jacket and recovery tights. Of course I picked up a hot chocolate right after the post ride meal.
- Sleeping a lot may not be as important: I only slept about 3 hours the night before the ride, on top of that I had to drive three and a half hours to Salisbury, MD. Still by the grace of the Lord it was not an issue during the ride. However, resting up pre and post ride is important nonetheless.
- Core conditioning is essential for an endurance rider: I incorporated core strengthening HIIT workouts in my training and reaped the benefits during the ride. I did not have any issues with body mechanics during the ride and I could tell those strong quads, glutes, hamstrings and calves are throttling me ahead.