#Festive500 Day 3 Ride
One of my unknowns before setting out on this #Festive500 thing was the consecutive mileage. Whilst I am happy with a one day sportive and also manage to do 50km a day, everyday for my commute, I was not sure about the pulling off a large amount of mileage in such a short space of time. The first four days at least allow me to have some initial days off to break myself in; I can ride the first day, the Christmas Day is definitely a no-no, then ride on Boxing Day and then a rest day with Church and friends. after that it’s open season to finish off whatever remains of the 500km. So far this has worked; when I got on the bike this morning I felt great, no tiredness or fatigue (other than the time I was leaving the house) and so felt really positive that this is going to be achievable; weather permitting.
Todays weather could only be described as Monument Classic weather and exactly as the Met Office had predicted. So aware that it was cold and very wet it was definitely time to keep close to home and just see how long I could stay out. Whilst I realise part of the goal of these events is to roam further afield and see something new, and if I was not quite so far North then I would be, however there is great comfort with the familiar, knowing that when something does not go to plan then it is easy to get home. Also when the elements are definitely turned against you it is easier to break the ride down into steps to help you plug on. As a result of the persistent heavy rain I did not get any photos of what is a beautiful part of the country that I get the pleasure of riding in most days.
If you read up on my first ride (click here if you missed it) you’ll know that my glove selection had been pretty poor first day and so knowing that it was torrential rain likely to last longer than I was going to I went for the neoprene gloves with merino liners with limited success; in reality it was just too cold for me to maintain heat in my hands with the wind as well as rain and so my hands ended up being completely non-functional again. Another reason for not getting any photos. I seriously need to work on this glove thing. I have tried everything over the years from Windstopper gloves to full skiing mitts. Whilst they all work well if it is dry, as soon as it is wet up here (and by default cold as well) it all falls apart. In reality my only port of call is the lobster type overmitts that are usually waterproof. Would love to hear what anyone else uses and has success with.
I felt good for the first loop and was going well on the second leg; I decided to ride in reverse to my normal direction as I would get the wind behind me for longer. I got to the end of the North Deeside Road and was about to turn onto the Slug Road (yes that is its official name) when a car going in the other direction managed to displace the entire contents of one puddle (read that as “lake”) right on top of me; the thermal shock of near zero water from head down was something of a wake up and to be honest was the start of the end of the ride. The return leg to Stonehaven was in to the wind and in torrential rain, and by the time I hit Stonehaven for the second time was so cold that I knew another two hours for the final lap would be suicide and so headed home one lap short for the day. Disappointing but I still have time to catch up on the 500km over the coming week. So tomorrow is another rest day and Monday will see the next instalment.