Let’s Talk Seagull Century

Years before I began cycling seriously, I’d see posters for the Seagull Century and think how great it would be to do that ride someday. This past weekend it came to be!  John and I rode in the Seagull Century, and yes, I completed it. Yay!

First Rest Stop

First Rest Stop

It was my first century and probably John’s zillionth. I got pretty nervous as October 5th approached. Things hadn’t worked out as I’d planned  in the weeks leading up to the ride. Between a heavy  workload, a cold, and business travel I rode very little in mid-late September. The weekend before the ride we went out for a hilly 50 miler. I figured if I could do that at a decent pace, I could somehow complete a flat century.

So how did it go? I  maintained an average of 13.9 mph for 101 miles. I started out with 15 mph for the first 43 or so miles, slowing down as fatigue set in and pain started increasing.  And how did I feel? Quite good for the first half, but  the second half was tougher.  The rest stops helped a lot.  There were four of them, about 20 miles apart. By the time we got to the third one (which marked the furthest I’d ever ridden in one day before) I was starting to really feel it, but the brief break and refreshment helped.  I felt pretty good for 10 miles or so. And then all I had to do was keep going for 10 more until the next one.

Assateague Island

Assateague Island

Somewhere around the 80-85  mile mark, a man rode by  with a cheery smile and asked, “How are you feeling?”  “Great,” I said. “My left earlobe doesn’t hurt!” The young woman riding next to me deadpanned, “It will soon, though.”

The  sit-bones hurt the most. That was a long time to be in the saddle and my butt was letting me know it. There were some muscle aches but really no worse than other rides I’ve done. I paid attention to taking in enough water, Nuun and food (small amounts of each, frequently) and I think that helped.

Now that I’ve done one century, would I do another? Well, yes. I think I would.

We made a long weekend of it. This was our least favorite of the restaurants we tried, but it had the best view.

We made a long weekend of it. This was our least favorite of the restaurants we tried, but it had the best view.

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7 thoughts on “Let’s Talk Seagull Century

  1. Ah yes… pain at 80ish miles. I know it well. Consider How Ha Ride Glide. It numbs you a bit. I add chamois butter to my shorts and the hoo ha cream to the nooks and crannies.

  2. Congrats on your first century ride, Nancy. Quite the accomplishment. Not many do it despite the number of people you see around you and who passed you that day.

    • Thanks Pat! The Seagull gets a big turnout, over 7000. Some do the metric & some do the century. It’s very well organized, the route is flat, it’s a great time of year and its near a major metropolitan area. It was fun to see all the different riders and bikes. Everything from loop frame hybrids to ultra light racing bikes. Quite a few tandems and not too many other steel frame road/touring bikes, but a few.

  3. Congratulations on a job well done! How’s your earlobe? ; )

    I feel differently as a cyclist, now that I’ve done a century, what about you? Suddenly I feel more “legit,” which is dumb, I realize, and yet…

    It’s a great event, I really enjoyed the whole thing. Next year will just be a few half or metric centuries for me!

  4. My earlobe is doing very well thank you! Congratulations to you as well. Completing a century does feel rather like earning a merit badge, doesn’t it? I enjoyed your post on the experience. I could envision doing the Seagull or the Shorefire century next year. But I’m not ready for the Civil War Century or one like it. 100 miles is one thing. 100 tough hill miles? That’s a whole other merit badge!

  5. Pingback: Time Out/Recharging/Philly Bike Expo | Mid-Atlantic Bike Commuting

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