Sunday, June 26, 2011

MRT - Biking Day 6

Savanna, Illinois to Cordova, Illinois

Time: 3:17:26

Distance: 37.145 (+2) miles

Average Speed: 11.2 mph

Max Speed: 22.8 mph

Calories Burned: 1108.8

Fat Burned: 116.8 g

Since we had to stay so far away last night and most of us were ready to get back home to our families, we decided to start our day in Savanna, Illinois instead of going all the way back to Galena. Then we could drive home this afternoon. So we planned a short day of about 40 miles, mostly on a bike path.

Jack racing some trains from our starting point in Savanna

The bike path was really nice and this part of Illinois is really flat.

However, it was pretty warm today and the headwind was absolutely brutal. The first portion of the bike path went through Thomson prairie, which was really nice with big fields. However, it also went through areas called sloughs, which is really just a fancy word for swamp. This area was pretty muggy and, more importantly, BUGGY! I didn’t dare breathe through my mouth and mostly tried to ride with my head down so that the bugs would bounce off my helmet instead of my face. When we finally made it out of the slough, I had at least eight bugs down my jersey. Gross.

Views of the prairie

The headwind was so bad that this thing sprayed me on the road! Although, for the first time on this trip, I was warm enough to not mind being wet.

I really liked the pattern on the bike path. This was mostly my view as I didn’t want to eat too many bugs. Don’t make fun of my speed! The wind was terrible!

We stopped to have breakfast at a pizza place. It was delicious. After breakfast, my mood improved tremendously, even though the wind was still awful. I hate riding in wind, but my attitude directly corresponds to how hungry I am. So if you ever ride with me and I start getting testy, you should offer me your extra Clif bar or something. :)

We continued on the bike path until we reached Fulton, where there is an awesome Dutch windmill.

Red winged blackbird at the windmill. I did love all the birds on this trip.

We continued on and rode through a park where there are Indian mounds. Unfortunately, you had to hike to actually see the mounds and we were trying to get home. The rest of the day we just pedaled on along the bike path until we reached Cordova. The bike path really was lovely and most of it was lined with flowers.

I was tired and my shoulders and knees really hurt and the wind had me down. I just kept Barb in my sights (In fact, I’m pretty sure she was holding back a little so I wouldn’t get left behind. I’m very grateful that she essentially pulled me all day.) At some point I got tired of my shoulders hurting and remembered reading some time last week that if you have a helmet with a visor, try removing the visor to alleviate shoulder pain. So, I did. And it helped! So if you're experiencing shoulder pain and have a visor on your helmet, try removing it before changing your bike fit.

And then, before too long, we made it! John announced the official mileage as 402 miles in six days. We celebrated with various beverages at our SAG wagon. I had a Mike’s Hard Lemonade. A very well-deserved one. Then we loaded up and headed for home.

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