Today was the Oryx Challenge.

Yesterday was Yom Kippur.

Today was also my first day back on birth control after the week off.

I have learned to never have this combination again.

J and I signed up for the Oryx a while back, knowing that it was the day after Yom Kippur. I didn't realize it would be the day after my girly week, but thought I would be fine. We rode 62 miles last week to prepare for it and my riding has greatly improved lately.

Today sucked.

I was doing OK for the first, oh, 20 miles or so. It's a very slow climb to the turn-around, and once we really started climbing, I bonked. I fell back behind the group and just kept pedaling away. By this time, J had fallen back with another rider from our group who was having some shoulder issues. Joe, the group leader, came back to pull me up the hill, but just keeping in his draft had me feeling like I was going to puke.

I have never had that feeling on a bike ride before.

I did not puke, but I did let him know I couldn't keep up. He went back up with the group and I slowed down to try to recover. J and Chelsey eventually caught up to me and J helped us struggle up the hill. I actually stopped at one point just to breathe. It was not fun and I felt weak. Our group was headed back down while we were still about 3 miles from the turn.

(If I had puked, I would have come home and ordered this tshirt:

We did finally make it up the damn hill, and we were glad to stop for a few minutes. I chowed down a peanut butter chew (homemade, they are amazing), refilled my empty water bottle, and we got back on the road.

This was the fun part - going back down the hill we had just climbed. It was a great recovery time as well. However, even the tiny little climbs that would usually not bother me were slowing me down today. I was not doing so hot.

J and Chelsey stuck with me the whole way back, and we finished in 4 hours. My feet were sore and I couldn't wait to get those bike shoes off and put on my flip flops. Our group had finished a while before us and headed their separate ways, so we did the same. We picked up some Taco Bell for lunch and headed home.

Looking back, I could have been pushing more food into my body during the ride. With yesterday's fast, I probably should have had something to eat about every 20 miles. I didn't, and I suspect it hindered me. But also, I don't think I will ever sign up for a ride or run the day after Yom Kippur. Well, unless it's something easy like a 5K.

I did it, I finished my ride. It was just about 60 miles, which is actually 2 miles short of a true 100K, but I'll take it, today.

Next event is the Iron Soldier sprint tri on a Saturday with the Chili Pepper bike ride the next day. I only signed up for 40 miles on the Chili. I think that is much better.

Now I'm going to go make some soup.


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