Post Brevet Thoughts

I’ve been thinking about what went wrong and what I could do better since this weekend’s brevet. For the most part though, I’m pretty happy with how I rode. There were times that I would’ve like to push harder to catch other riders, but I knew that we had a long ways to go, and that it was better to save some energy. Energy that I ended up needing for the headwinds that were to come.

As far as fueling goes, my combination of Heed and Perpetuem seem to work out pretty good for me. I need to figure out a better way to carry the powder, but I have an idea that I’ll try on a ride before the next brevet. I had a cheeseburger at the control, and then I also ate a cliff bar towards the end. I’m not sure if the cliff bar helped or not. After sipping liquid all day, it was pretty hard to chew the bar. That might have been because it was so much work with the headwind. It seemed like it took forever to get that bar down.

The Grand Bois tires worked out great. They seem to roll smoother than the Paselas that I had on before. I had one problem with my rear wheel, when it shifted in the dropouts. It was rubbing the inner chainstay for a little bit, but it was ok. A quick readjustment and I was rolling again. That’s a problem with the smooth dropouts on the Casseroll. The QR skewer has to be really tight to make sure that the wheel doesn’t shift under load.

On Friday, up in Big Bear, I met Jeff of Bike Crave. I’ve been reading his blog a lot lately and it was nice to put a face to the name. His post yesterday was perfect. You can read it here. I rode into work yesterday, still feeling a little tired, and the ride home seemed to take forever. I choose an easy gear and just enjoyed my ride. However, every time someone passed me, and they did, I thought of his post and how hard it is sometimes to stick with your plan. I was on the 50lb Long Haul Trucker, getting passed left and right. It would’ve been easy to get out of the saddle and pass them on the climb. What is it that makes us want to prove that we’re stronger? I didn’t though and I just stuck to my easy, but steady gear. Before long I was passing the other out of breath riders. I have no idea what other cyclists I encounter are capable of, and they don’t know about me either. It’s more important to stick to my own plan and I’ll get there when I get there. Just like in the brevet, pacing is the key.

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