I’m not usually big on writing race reports, but here goes.
It was cold. I mean really cold!!! Temperature at race start was -2 F with -25 F wind chill. I have never raced in anything like this. I was a little worried because of the temps and the fact that this would be my longest offroad/fatbike ride ever, 45 miles!!!
First ever fat bike mass start race. It went pretty well, I just tried to stay out of trouble and ride clean lines through the first sections of road and into the single track. There were a few multi bike pile ups with pass attempts and crashes in corners but I manage to stay clear of most of it.
Lap one had me pretty worried. I could not get my Heart Rate down no matter how much I slowed down. I knew it was not sustainable for 5 hours. My legs really just didn’t have anything in the first few hills, I just felt dead. Near the end of the first lap I started to get into a rhythm and feel more confident.
Lap Two. In between laps I stopped quickly at my cooler to grab a new bottle and head back out. By now the riders were pretty strung out so there weren’t any traffic issues. Towards the end to lap two my HR monitor stopped working so I just tried to ride steady and keep taking in my Infinit Nutrition mix to keep me going. Lap two was pretty calm and felt good.
Lap Three started with a near crash on a fast corner which kind of woke me up and got me to focus on my riding. My legs were starting to feel the effort on all of the hills and flats where I was pushing a little. I began to realize that I would be able to finish as long as I didn’t have a major crash or mechanical issue. The cold started to settle into my feet a little by the end of lap three.
Lap four was not pleasant! My lower back decided it didn’t want to be on the bike anymore. Every pedal stroke began to hurt. The cold was starting to get to me. I still felt warm but I could tell my body was starting to struggle. I tried to focus on each little stretch knowing that it was taking me closer to the finish line.
Crossed the line and wanted off the bike!!! Went to the truck to get warm and put some dry clothes on. There was a thick layer of ice on the inside of my soft shell and the inside of my outer tights. As I started to warm up I started to shiver uncontrollably. Got all the warm gear on and headed out to see how others were doing. A friend greeted me with a beer that was so tasty!!! Hung around for awards and drawing with hopes of winning something, but nothing for me.
The rest of the day was spent on the couch hydrating and eating. The following day I was really sore, pretty much everything hurt so not much was going on. Monday I had a really painful massage at Body Rhythms. It definitely loosened me up, but hurt at the same time. Epsom salt bath that evening to try and further help the recovery process. Tuesday morning greets me with a bit of soreness but a step in the right direction.
This was a super hard race! I think I will do it again, but I will train more appropriately for such a long cold event!!!
Thanks to everyone who helped me out! Thanks to Body Rhythms for taking care of my body!