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I have known since November that I was going to do this 4K ride, but only recently have I been able to train on my actual 4K bike.  The bike itself did not arrive until late March after I reached my first fundraising goal of $4,500 and before that I had mostly been indoors or on the occasional run weather permitting. Since March my rides have been somewhat limited, both by time and my comfort.

2013.5.16 Bike Doctor Logo

But last Friday I got a full fitting on the Guru machine at Bike Doctor in Frederick, MD – wonderful place.  The set me up with a new saddle, new higher seat post, and a stem extension. It was overall a wonderful experience, and they even threw in free labor because of my cause! To top it all off they knew I was on a short timeline so they installed my new parts and adjusted my gears/brakes right then and there while I took a lunch trip over to Chipotle  I highly recommend this shop!

I ended up getting a Brooks Imperial Saddle. It is kind of scary to look at but I actually really like it.  I rode it Sunday for about 30miles and, while not the most comfortable, I already felt an improvement. A second ride yesterday felt even better, so I am hoping it keeps improving as I break in the saddle and my butt, uh…becomes accustomed to the seat. Which brings me to the point – my training.

2013.5.16 First 50mi Training Workout

Yesterday I rode my longest ride yet – a 50 mile trek from Gettysburg out to Michaux State Forest and back via Mummasburg Rd., Buchanon Valley Road, Pine Grove Rd., and Shippensburg Rd. For a little extra distance I added in a quick battlefield tour on the tail end!  By that point hills were absolutely killing me but I felt good on the flats! Unfortunately the GPS cut out on me for awhile so I am not sure exactly how accurate the time and average speed are, but it is safe to say I went much further and faster than ever before!

I could really feel the difference from the bike fit. I was much more comfortable on the saddle and felt less pressure in the knees.  My new position extended my body, reducing the feeling that I was pinched up to small. I felt much more power throughout my ride and especially felt like I as using my quads so much more. With the help of newly tightened gears I was able to do much better on the climbs. Still though, climbs are the worst – at times I was tempted to get off and walk it but I start in 2.5 weeks and I cannot give in!