Almanzo tried to kill me. Well, not really. It just seemed like it tried to kill me.
I'm sure you've had similar days on the bike. But perhaps you haven't. Maybe you never will.
This year's Almanzo 100 course was stellar. Beautiful scenery encompassed the 100-mile lollipop of gravel. GPS toters returned with a registered 6800 feet of climbing.
For me the day quickly turned into an exhibition of prolonged suffering. Numerous farmers along the course broke into spontaneous applause at the site of my quivering calves. I'm sure many wondered if it was a 'slow race' or 'whether they are allowed to ride up the hills or not?'.
But as they supposedly say…what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.
And as Joe, who placed 4th on the day said, 'I suffered too. It was just a different kind of suffering.' Joe finished in 5:26:27.
Rob finished in 45th place about one hour later, easily surpassing his goal of finishing in the top third.
Pete arrived just 7 minutes later, 6:37:06…now he's talking about trading in his fullface helmet and flat pedals and going 'all gravel, all the time'.
Burton beat the 7 hour mark. 6:53:54 with only the food and drink he had with him when he left the start line.
Tanner unfortunately had to drop as his bad back flared up. He'll be back though. Because remember, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.
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I love being outside. I prefer to ride on dirt. Or snow. If I was born a hundred years earlier I might have been a polar explorer. There's a great natural world out there to see, smell, taste, listen to, and experience. Life slows down out there and the distractions we've created will disappear if you let them. Give me a backpack and let me go.