18 September 2015

Day 1 - Bar Harbor to Hope

Well, the day did not turn out the way I’d hoped. I got up early this morning and got some breakfast at our hotel before the shuttle took us over to camp. I was getting all my stuff ready and remembered that since I had forgotten my sunglasses, I had asked to borrow a pair from one of the support members. When I asked her about it, she said she had forgotten them but could run back to the hotel real quick to pick them up. At this point, Blake’s EPIC talk was over and people were starting to head out.

Lo and behold, I ended up being the last one out of camp because of the glasses situation. No big deal, I thought, I’ll just catch up to the others by the next water stop (in 20 miles). Well, we had been warned about some of the hills, especially the one on the way out of town. I thought I was prepared… but I turned that corner and tried to shift… and it didn’t shift. I just kept pedaling thinking it would catch eventually, and not only did it not catch, it locked up. I knew I was going down… so I braced for impact, leaned to the right, and hit the ground. OOOHH that was harder than I thought it was going to be! Also, there’s a bit of a ditch on the side of the road. I got the wind knocked out of me and laid there for a minute.

When I stood up, I debated about whether or not to call for assistance. I took stock – I was ok. No major scrapes or bruises. But man my ribs were sore. And my chain had come off. I sent in the text for help… “yup, I’m at 0.3 miles, and I need a mechanic.” I felt silly, but I knew it was the right thing to do. A few minutes later the mechanics rolled up and checked out my bike – and made sure I was ok. And we decided that me and the bike were ok to continue riding. At this point, the sweep rider had also shown up, so he stuck with me on the remainder of the ride. He’s worked at ski resorts before too, so he knew what to keep an eye out for with regard to my injury.

I had a tough time on another hill, just having difficulty taking a deep breath, but managed to make the 20 miles to the water stop. But at that point I decided it was time for a ride – in a vehicle. I was thinking I would be able to get back on the bike after the lunch stop, but once we got there and I talked with the ride medic, looked over the route and elevation for the next section, and confirmed with the ride director, I decided to call it a day. I’m not seriously injured, but I’m definitely sore enough to know my limits. After all – it’s day 1. I still have 4 more days and over 300 miles left to ride.

So the plan is to get a good night’s sleep and take stock in the morning. Hopefully I’m feeling up for the 52 miles on the agenda! If you're considering donating to my ride, please head on over to my fundraising page

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