Day 12

This is the traditional easy cycling day that has 30 minutes of easy spinning scheduled. Due to having to drive out of town I had to skip it.

Day 13

This was Saturday and I had a 3 hour endurance ride scheduled. Before heading out of town on Friday I mapped out a new route on MapMyRide to try. I was up at 6:00 AM on Saturday morning and rolling by 6:30. After 15 minutes I reset my computer and set out for 3 hours of riding.

I headed due east on Highway 199 towards Dickson. This is a fairly trafficked two-lane road but has six foot wide shoulders that makes it pretty safe. It’s not too flat either with three very good size hills over the 9 miles from Ardmore to Dickson. I lived and went to school in Dickson and had only been back through there a few times in the past 20 years. Before turning off Highway 199 I rolled by my brother’s house and past the old house we used to live in before moving when I was 10. Once in Dickson I turned North on Highway 177.

Washita River

Washita River

Highway 177 is also in good shape but there’ no shoulder. It wasn’t a big deal though since there wasn’t much traffic. What traffic there was gave me a wide berth and waved. Nearly everybody waved. Even the old guys mowing lawns on riding lawn mowers. There’s something to be said about that. At one point I crossed a bridge over the Washita River and stopped to take a couple of pictures with my phone. As a kid I fished in this river for catfish all the time with my Dad. Brought back some interesting memories that I hadn’t thought about in over 25 years. This ride up 177 was very nice and full of farm land and cows (do cows watch you ride by or is it just me?). I know for a fact it’s been well over 20 years since I’d been on this road. At one point three dogs got the drop on me and I had to go to an instant sprint to outrun them. Luckily I was in the big chain ring already and was quickly up to 25 mph. One of them tried to keep pace but eventually gave up. Turns out those were the only dogs I would encounter the whole day.

Eventually I reached SH53 and turned left (West). This was the same type of road as 177 but with even less traffic and more scenic. I’m not sure I’d ever been on that road before. It was truly a beautiful piece of highway to ride on. I went by the old airport, turned to the North and then back to the West so I could continue on to Highway 77 over at Springer. Once past the airport though I ran into some more hills that really taxed me but I suffered on.

The trip down 77 was the worst part of the ride because the shoulder was in absolute ruins. Luckily this was a four-lane highway and I was able to ride in the right-hand lane heading South. Again, traffic was light so that wasn’t a problem but I hit a couple more hills that put the burn into my legs.

Once back into Ardmore I headed across town and realized that I was on track to finish in only 2:15 (h:mm) so I needed to kill 45 minutes. I wound up doing some loops on the South side of town to complete the ride and eventually ended up riding 2 hours and 57 minutes.

Overall I felt great this entire ride except for the last 20 minutes or so. After I had been on the bike an hour or so I realized that I hadn’t brought anything with me to eat and was worried that might be a problem. Turns out it wasn’t for the majority of the ride but I think that may have been what caused the last 20 minutes or so to hurt some. The weather couldn’t have been more perfect. Here are the numbers:

Time: 2:57:18 (plus an additional 15 minutes warm up)
Distance: 45.69 miles (plus an additional 3.31 during warm up) (49 total!)
Avg Speed: 15.4 mph

Day 14

I was back in Dallas this evening and was scheduled for a 1.5 hour endurance ride. I was worried I wouldn’t get the ride in because of thunderstorms but I did. I didn’t feel too great and the wind was terrible and coming from just the right direction to make it feel like I had a head wind no matter which was I was headed. White Rock Lake sits in kind of a natural bowl and I think the wind swirls really bad on spots which contributed to the head wind. Because of the wind, and feeling tired from yesterday, I only road for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Here are the numbers:

Time: 1:15:32 (plus 15 minute warm up)
Distance: 19.17 miles
Avg Speed: 15.2 mph