I wanted to complete my R-12 and P-12 rides in one weekend so I also signed up for Joe’s Great Adventure last weekend. After doing the 200km ride on Friday, I had Saturday to recuperate and work, and felt ready for the ride on Sunday. The forecast was for a hot and humid day, so I wanted to push hard to finish as quickly as possible. Fortunately, Laurent was able to join me so I had company this time, and someone who is faster and stronger than I am to keep me on my toes. We met at the deli where we usually have breakfast and get our cards signed. It was closed and showed no signs of opening so we were forced to go to the store at the gas station that was almost next door. Taking care of business, we headed out along the detour route because Hillsborough Rd is still closed.
This route is “flat” but there are a few decent bumps in it that get your heart rate up. I stayed with Laurent on all of the little climbs except for one or two at the very end when I was starting to get tired. We arrived at the controle and turn around point in a little less than two and one half hours so could afford to sit down inside the Sunoco with a good snack. The air conditioning felt great as well.
Fortified and rested, we started back at a brisk pace. The course retraces exactly so twice we got to see the people at the little lake that we pass spending a leisurely morning in their boats, fishing, drinking coffee, chatting without being out of breath. Now there’s the smart people. Back through Cranbury, the starting point for another NJ ride early in the season. Past the strawberry farm that Katie and I stopped at the last time we did this route.
The heat really started to intensify during the last hour or so of the ride, so it felt to me like we were trying to maintain a balance between pushing as hard as we could to finish before it got even hotter, and pushing so hard that we got sick. Fortunately, there were still patches of shade along the road that provided brief respites from the direct sun so we were able to keep riding hard.
Finally, we turned onto Township Line Rd which meant that we had just a few miles to go. A couple more quick bumps, some traffic along Route 206 and we were back at the start. Again, the deli disappointed so we went the the Pizza restaurant next door for some lunch. Five hours and twenty minutes–pretty good time for the escargots. Maybe the little bit of interval training that I’ve been trying to do is helping, or maybe it was just a good day for a ride.