Last weekend there was a "ride" on Oahu called Sharon's Ride. This is a "ride" that supports the Epilepsy Foundation of Hawai'i. A great cause and reason (although who really needs a reason to ride bikes) to get out there and ride your bike for a couple of hours. It is meant to be a nice little 100k "ride," but this ride is police escorted so for the lead group it really turns into a sufferfest for 60 miles.
This year we didn't get the motorcycle cop support the ride usually gets (we only got 1) because the ride happened to take place on the same day as the ProBowl and the motorcycle cops had other priorities. Pro football players get more support than lowly cyclists on this island.
Because of this, the beginning of the ride was super punchy and for me, tough to keep up. I can maintain a steady pace for a long period of time, but when the rides get punchy, I tend to suffer a bit more. My goal was to hang on to the lead pack for as long as possible, then when I got dropped, which was bound to happen, continue on at a hard, steady pace for the reminder of the ride. Well, I made it for about 15 miles of the ride (I would like to think I could have held on for longer if I was really racing or if it wasn't as punchy, but I guess these are some of the things I need to work on, there's always room for progress, lesson learned) and then it was hold steady for the rest of the time all by myself (or with 3 other guys who barley spoke a word the entire rest of the ride and every time I tried to take a pull, they passed me again right away and wouldn't let me ride in front...even though every time they got in front we slowed down quite a bit....egos).
The rest of the ride was uneventful....a steady, hard, consistent training day. The ride ended up being just shy of 62 miles and it was a beautiful morning for a bike ride to support a great cause.