What else to do but to haul out the stationary trainers and go for it? Since our friend and trusty crew member Jim Kern was doing a 24-hour race in Sebring, Florida (where I hear the weather was pretty danged nice, by the way!), we decided to ride for 24 hours in solidarity. (Oh - how did Jim do at the race? NOT BAD!
Solidarity, sure - just not so much solidarity that we'd committed to start at the exact same time (getting up to start pedalling at 6:30 AM East Coast time was an option, but not that GREAT of an option). We went for a more leisurely 8AM PST start, which left us plenty of time for a tasty waffle breakfast.
Then - we traded hours for the next day. One hour on, one hour off. We will probably vary the pulls more than that during the actual race, but we figured that an hour was a good starting point. The routine was...hop on the bike, ride hard for an hour, grab something to eat, try to get some minor around-the-house chores done, then back at it. At night, we tried to simulate a sleep "shift" - a quick bite to eat, strip off soggy clothes (our living room is considerably more humid than the Arizona desert...) and snooze for 30-40 minutes before starting over again.
By the end of the 24 hours, we were really glad that we'd put mats down under the bikes to contain the swamp of our own making. Cog was giving us curious looks, as though we'd really, truly, finally cracked this time (or perhaps just really messed with his sleep). And I was craving bacon like mad, so while Bill did the last pull, I headed out to Wildberries and got some. We had a big ole' farmhouse breakfast before turning in for a quick nap.
And - more importantly - why did we trade off riding rather than each ride the same hour on/hour off pattern? Wouldn't it be more fun to have some company while you're suffering? Well, this is not a matter of fun. Bill and I train together ALL THE TIME, because - let's face it - we really like being together. Being a 2-person relay team means that we will NEVER be together during the race. So we have to shift our thinking a little bit. We are racing together, but - not together. When I'm on the bike, not only is Bill not on the bike, but I am racing for him. So I'd better be racing up to my full potential, 'cause I know that that's exactly what he's going to be doing for me: