Wild Card Cycling’s training camp in southern Illinois was last weekend. I knew what I was getting into after the past two trips. I was a little concerned about my lack of miles this year, but I ended up riding a little better than I thought/feared I would.

Wednesday evening was our regular weekly fight ride. It was tough.

Thursday we left for camp, drove in the pouring rain, arrived in the pouring rain, unpacked in the pouring rain, and rode (you guessed it) in the pouring rain. It was slightly miserable, but not too bad. My legs were not fresh after Wednesday’s ride. I actually felt like crap for about 20 miles. The good news was that I didn’t feel any worse after the next 20. We rode from Giant City to the top of Bald Knob (the highest point in southern Illinois) and back. It was a very hilly 50 miles. Even though the speed wasn’t super-fast, it was still tough.

Friday the sun was shining, but it was cold when we left for the ride. We had some logistical problems and ended up riding in two separate groups after the two groups apparently couldn’t find each other at the predetermined ride start time. No matter, we still had a good ride (again) to the top of Bald Knob and back. After a few detours I ended the day with a (very hilly) 66 miles and a slight sunburn on my exposed left calf below my knee warmer.

Saturday the goal was 100 (very hilly) miles. My legs were toast at the start from the previous three days of riding. I started the ride with a comfortable 18 miles with just Martin. I ended the first 50 tagged on to the back of the fast group, which was too fast for me. I felt like crap and I was 50 miles from my cabin. I made a conscious decision to take it easy and things got better from there. I rode for a while with just Scott. Then we picked up a group who opted for a shorter loop. The last 18 miles I rode with just John S. At 90 miles I felt better than I had 50 miles earlier. That was the biggest surprise of the weekend, that despite never feeling great, I always ended the rides feeling as good as (if not better than) I did at the start. I guess it’s taking me a while to warm up. Anyway, I got an even worse sunburn on Saturday on my left calf below my knee warmer.

The sun be a harsh mistress

The light red line is from Friday, the dark red line is from Saturday.

Saturday night was dinner at Giant City, which was good times as usual.

Sunday morning it was pouring down rain so everyone ended up leaving early rather than do a dangerous set of hill repeats in the pouring rain. It was very good to get home to see Melissa & Will after a few days away. We made the most of the afternoon with a trip to the park.

One thought on “Camp”

  1. I rode on Sunday. In the rain. Everyone else in my camp packed it in. Of course, I had only Saturday’s ride in my legs and did not want to leave camp with just 64 miles. I’m coming along very slowly, but it’s early.

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