There was a general plan (and need) to get a long ride in this weekend ahead of the Itoigawa ride. With Mother’s Day tomorrow, and a certain fairly new mother informing me that brunch was booked, I decided to head out early this morning rather than join the group tomorrow.
Alarm went off at 5:15am, I was up, dressed and eating breakfast by 5:30am, out the door and on the road by 6am. I met Dave of the famous calf muscles at 6:30am at the usual spot and we were off up the Tama river to Ome. We made good time on a beautiful morning, arriving outside the Aurore bakery (Positivo approved) to find it closed. 7-11 sufficed.
Off up to Okutama, enjoying the views seen above, and then round the lake and on up Yanigasawa Pass. A pit stop at the top to enjoy the view, then a fast descent down to Enzan. Left turn onto Route 20, a much needed 7-11 lunch stop, after which we then continued via Otsuki and Uenohara to Sagamiko.
Up the hill to the Circle K for some more fuel and water, then heads down for the final 50km, to arrive home at 7pm.
256km, 2500m or so of climbing, 10 and half hours riding, 1 and a half faffing, superb weather.
I found myself struggling a little both mentally and physically around the 135km mark. Some of the short inclines/climbs at this time were quite a struggle, but some intelligent fueling and moral support meant it wasn’t long before I was enjoying myself again. With this ride under my belt, I can really enjoy ‘tapering’ ahead of the Tokyo-Itoigawa event in two weeks time.
Sitting here with a pint of non-fat milk.. to be followed by a couple of pints of water.. mildly concerned about turning down a beer at the Club House so easily, but let’s see how I feel tomorrow!