Back at it again with this Alberta cycling tour! I did the 100km distance in 2014 and rode the 160km distance last year, recaps HERE and HERE. Once again, I signed up for the 160km distance with my dad and my mom signed up for the 100km distance (but sadly had a flat that busted her entire tire and she had to be picked up off the course at 86.9km)! This Tour was literally my entire day yesterday, and I just worked on Saturday, so here we are, Monday after a very active weekend!
The tour was actually moved from Morinville (super close to me, north west of Edmonton) to Beaumont (south east of Edmonton) this year, so it was neat to ride in a different area. As you may have noticed, we’ve been trying to get in some distance riding lately to try and prepare for this day. I think it paid off because for the most part it was an amazing day, but things like 30 degree afternoons and a strong west wind are things you can’t train for.
We started at 8am. I actually hit the wall at about 60km. I had a good breakfast and lots of fluid but I only grabbed half a banana at the first food station and the next one wasn’t until 76km and I totally ran out of fuel in my body. I just drained my water bottles and pressed on but I felt so hungry and sick at the same time for a solid half hour. I learned my lesson and kept constant fuel and electrolytes for the remainder of the tour. The rest was awesome. The wind was tough and it got VERY hot in the last few hours but we did it!
170… yep, the course was 170km and not 160km… kilometres of Alberta canola fields, cute farm houses, and some little provincial parks I didn’t even know existed! My dad is a rockstar. He probably could have ridden a few km/h faster and would have been able to go another 50km when we finished, but he stuck with me and totally was my rock during the day. I’m super proud of him! It also kind of bums me out when I’m struggling hard up hills and he’s 52 and powering up like a champ. 😉 Our average speed was 27km/h, which is a bit slower than last year, but still awesome and we were happy with it!
Oh god… my hair in that photo. Yikes. We had a quick meal at the finish before NEEDING to get home and shower. Best shower ever. We crashed for a bit before heading for DQ blizzards. I don’t think I’ve had a blizzard in a few years so it was incredible. I had peanut butter cookie dough… aka the best combination in the world. One of us biked 170km and one did a marathon (on Netflix).
You see that little patch of red on my forehead? Yup, a sunburn. I even reapplied sunscreen at our lunch stop around 121km, but there are random patches on my body that I must have missed because I have a few spots that were burnt. My cycling tan lines are now in full effect and totally mock-worthy.
Until next year Tour De L’Alberta!