Coast Ride went completely beyond all of my expectations. It was unreal and spectacular and tremendously hard. In an attempt to break things up, I am going to spread out the 3 days of Coast Ride into 3 separate posts over the next 3 days.
Starting off the ride at the Golden Gate Bridge (Sam, Me and Chad)
Day 1: San Francisco, CA to Marina, CA
I wasn’t 100% sure of how to get out of the San Francisco, onto Highway 1 or where the heck our final destination was. So I naturally asked my coach for directions. He sent me a 6 page google map….I didn’t even really read the directions as I folded them up and shoved them away. I was freaking out that I was going to get lost. So I asked to meet up with my friends Sam and Chad so that we could all roll together. They wanted to read the directions too because they also didn’t know exactly where we were going either. The directions my coach had sent me included taking a ferry boat from Mill Valley across the bay and then biking down the 101, a really busy freeway, which runs through California….my coach had been playing a cruel trick on me. I threw the directions away.
Sam, Chad and I rode out to the Golden Gate Bridge and then down to Ocean Beach where we met up with BP and Troy. It wasn’t long before my coach and the rest of our group rolled up and we were off on our journey. There were about 30 of us on my team who were doing the Coast Ride. We went through neighborhoods and then out to the coast, down Highway 1 through parts of routes I had been on before including Half Moon Bay and part of the Big Kahuna race course in Santa Cruz. It got pretty toasty. We were sweating buckets but I had a bunch of layers on. The only problem was I couldn’t stop to take them off because I had not applied sunscreen and didn’t really feel like turning into a boiled lobster.
I somehow ended up in a group of about 10 guys and me. My own personal sausage fest (which was basically 90% of Coast Ride). The farther we went, we started getting into some country and going along back routes. About the last 15 miles I got dropped from the group I was riding with. My energy was pretty sapped by this point. It was the longest ride I had done since Ironman in September. Luckily, one of the guys had stopped for a bathroom break along the way and came charging up to catch the group. He let me slide in behind him and draft. We finally got back up to the group and we were in the home stretch.
When we got to the hotel, pretty much every other person was done for the day. But not me, I still had a 30 minute transition run. BP is training for Ironman Los Cabos on March 30, so he was the only other person who had to do a transition run. The sun was already behind the mountains and it was getting pretty chilly. We went out for a nice little run along a trail by our hotel. We planned to do a 15 minute out and 15 minute back. It seemed to take forever. We were chatting away and convinced that we had run way over the 15 minute mark but it had barely been 10 minutes. Finally we turned around and headed back.
By this point I was starving and exhausted as I am sure you can all imagine. There was almost nothing in the little town we were staying in except a Denny’s, a 7 Eleven, and a steakhouse. Random options. We made the long trek to another hotel where the steakhouse was. By this point I was hangry and just needed some food. I sat in a dazed and confused stupor at the table. After massive amounts of water, salmon, some steak, sticky rice and vegetables I was doing much better. We even hit the 7 Eleven on the way back to the hotel and got some ice cream (Sam’s kryptonite). Then it was time for a stretching session and off to bed for the next day.