Saturday was the day! The day started off at 7am when 10 neighborhood ladies got together for one single purpose: to bike for the cause. Helmets, bikes, and water packed we were ready to kick some asphalt! Some of us were going for 38 miles, and others for 68.
The Little Red Ridinghood tour is one of two nationwide all women ride and Saturday I was able to see the most amazing thing ever--over 1500 women gathered together to bike for the cause! I felt honored to be a part of it.
Women encouraging one another, supporting one another and coming to the aid of each other. I will never forget the sights and the feelings in my heart from this one experience.
When we took off at 8:30am, there was laughter and excitement all around. 10 miles into the ride, I knew that I was going to change my mind about the 38 mile ride. My knew was feeling great, I was averaging 17 mph and my heart was full of joy. When the first stop came at 21 miles, we found out that we got routed to the wrong direction, adding an extra 10 miles to the ride, so instead of 68, we were in for 78! But, I was still feeling quite well so I made the decision to go for the 68 miles rather than thet 38. Since is much more fun when you have someone with you, I convinced C, one of my neighbors (she is the picture above), to go for it with me, she agreed without much coercing. We rode together for the rest of the miles, cheering each other on, encouraging each other when the path got tough, drafting off each other when it got just too hard.
At the 40 mile marker, we were still feeling quite good. Our hands started to get numb and our bottom was starting to get a bit sore but our hearts were happy and full of energy, so we kept going. At 55 miles, we stopped for lunch....my favorite was being served, Subways! It was the perfect lunch! I wolfed down that sandwich in about three bites and off we went for the rest of our trip....the hardest part of it of it all.
The next leg of our tour was the toughest of it all...everything was uphill and our legs were feeling it. Our arms started to get numb and our legs just wanted to give out. We were getting tired and the only thing that kept us going was each other. With words of "you can do it", "just one more pedal", "think how far we have come, we can't give up now". We climbed to the summit....it is not really big but to us it seemed like Mt. Everest!
On our last stop, we were met by smiling faces of our loved ones! Sam, Wonderboy and Little Benny were there and they just ran to meet us....little Benny just crashed into me like a little football player. They were so happy to see us and my heart was overwhelmed by the reception.
After a quick rest stop, we climbed on the saddle again for our last leg of the ride. We were tired and the Aleve I took that morning was starting to wear off. It was almost 3pm, almost 8 hours since we started off! We climbed on the bikes and off we went for our last 17 miles. At mile point 65 my Aleve wore off completely and my knee started hurting. Our left arms were going completely numb and we decided to make quick stops to stretch our legs and give our arms a rest.
When at the beginning we saw a downhill as a break, we started realizing that after them came a hill and our enthusiasm for the downhills wore off. At this point we started concentrating more on gaining momentum and speed just to make the uphill climb. It is amazing how a little ant hill can seem like Mt. Olympus when you are tired! On the last hill of the trip, we joined the ranks of a bunch of raiders, slowly we pedal our way up. Then, we were cheered on by Sam and the kiddos who caught up to us in the car...with words of "you can do it Mom", I was able to climb that last ant hill. Once at the summit, we were told the wonderful news that we were only 2 miles away from the finished line. Those words were enough to give us both a burst of energy and our legs got a little faster.
At the finished line we were met by all of our friends and families who happily cheered for us. We had made it! 78 miles!
With tears in my eyes and a full heart I can truly say that I would not have made this journey without the support of my new friend C....we started this journey as neighbors and we ended up as friends. They say that misery loves company...well, I can say that misery does love company and makes the misery bearable but success, when you achieve success, it tastes so much sweeter when you have company! We did it girls! We truly are the kick asphalt club :)!