On Saturday, May 21, I joined about 1500 other cyclists to ride the 105 mile San Diego Century. Sent out in small groups, we started from MiraCosta College in Encinitas shortly after 6am. We first headed N/NW to San Marcos and Escondido, then S/SE through Rancho Santa Fe and Fairbanks Ranch. Our toughest climb was up the Scripps Poway Parkway and then to Ramona, where the organizers had lunch set up at the 63 mile turnaround point.
I was fortunate to hook up with a great guy on the way back. He pulled me between miles 66-76, which was a tough climb right after lunch (thank you Steve!). Having good company made the remaining ride so much more enjoyable! We crossed the finish line together.
I ended feeling great, not sure what made such a difference, as I’m usually pretty knackered after a century ride, particularly one with so much climbing (check out the elevation profile on the map below). There were a number of variables in my favor: training at altitude, good nutrition during the ride (Allen Lim’s rice cakes are the best!), excellent support from friends and family, fantastic roads (much smoother than Tucson overall), beautiful course, a generous ride buddy on the way back, and wonderfully cool weather with mild humidity.
It was a well organized event and lots of great people. And, to top it all off, I won a contest on the SDC’s Facebook page – free registration and event jersey!