The Great Bike Ride

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I really cannot believe I biked 73 miles this morning!  When I saw the Garmin roll over into the 70’s, I nearly had a heart attack.  Just goes to show that you can go anywhere with a little bit of training.  πŸ™‚

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Last night, I remembered an old post in which we talked about exercising to audiobooks.  I don’t listen to music while cycling (it’s REALLY unsafe to ride with both earbuds in – don’t do it!), but I realized that listening to an audiobook with one earbud in (the right side) was fine.  I could hear the traffic coming as I normally do (in fact, I couldn’t even hear the book when a car went by); it was just like talking to a friend during a ride!

 

Audiobooks are really expensive, so I decided to go with a $5 classic:

Oh, Mr. Carraway.  I love you.

 

The ride would’ve been UNBEARABLE without the audiobook.  I decided to ride on my normal airport loop (which is 12 miles long) because I was concerned about safety issues if I went to a secluded trail.  The book helped the ride fly by!

 

I broke into my first snack around Mile 25.

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I packed an English muffin with a lot of almond butter.  I also brought two water bottles.  I’m not sure WHAT I was thinking when I packed my food + drink, as it was clearly not enough!

 

Around Mile 45, I headed back to my house to refuel and get more water.  I grabbed a Gu Chomps (180 calories) and a Gu Brew (an electrolyte drink – 140 calories).  The GU Brew was mixed between two water bottles so the taste was a little diluted; but I liked it.

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This is when I started to feel a little bit crazy.  45 miles is a long time, and my knees and butt were starting to feel the distance.  I couldn’t believe I had 30 miles to go!

 

I pulled over and took a long stretch break around Mile 51 (and I twittered!):

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Unfortunately, my audiobook ended around 4:40, so I was stuck in silence for the last hour.  I watched the miles slowly tick by on my Garmin, and just when I couldn’t think I could ride any longer, I made the final turn to go back to the house (9 miles left!).

 

I think it’s funny how I always REALLY start to hurt when I know the end is near.  Whether it’s a training ride or run or an actual race, my body starts to rebel BADLY when I β€œknow” that it’s almost time to stop.  My legs started to SCREAM at Mile 70.  There was a strong headwind (of course!), too.  I just tried to think about rising above the pain in my legs – not injury pain – and carry on.  It was hard!

 

Final stats:

 

  • Distance: 73.0 miles
  • Duration: 5:37

 

Guess what?  I have to do this all over again – twice- and longer before the race!  Eck!   But I learned some important lessons (and that’s what training rides are about):

 

  • Pack more food!
  • Pack cash so I can stop in a gas station for cold water instead of coming home.
  • Reapply sunscreen!

 

I have a not-so-nice face burn.  Apparently, I sweated off the SPF 50 I applied before I left.  I need to buy a travel size sunscreen that fits in my jersey.

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Post-ride fuel (and BOY did I need it… I burned around 2,500-3,000 calories on that ride!):  2 eggs, 2 pieces of faux sausage, a bagel, and an orange:

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Chobani Pineapple and 3/4 cup Grape Nuts + 1/4 cup oatmeal:

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Chocolate:

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An Amy’s Samosa wrap (which is great, by the way!) with broccoli, salsa, and chips:

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I might snack again before bed (chocolate anyone?!), but right now I’m full.  I’m sure the refueling will continue into tomorrow as well. 

 

Do you workout to audiobooks?  Got any recommendations for me for my next long ride?

{ 143 comments }

 

  • Jenny April 27, 2010, 10:02 pm

    That is a seriously impressive amount of miles! Way to go!!!

  • Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin April 27, 2010, 10:03 pm

    CONGRATS!!! 73 miles is SO far. That is amazing!

    And what an awesome idea to listen to an audio book while riding! I only ever to think to listen to them while driving… but good idea.

    No specific recommendations for you, but did you know a lot of libraries have audio books? Not sure if you have a local library/library card, but you should check it out because they’re free if you do! πŸ™‚

    • Anna April 27, 2010, 10:35 pm

      Yes!!! Look at your local library! Mine has tons of books on CD that have saved my mind/sanity when driving home for holidays (12 hr. car trip all by myself ugh).
      I can’t speak to endurance sports, but I HIGHLY recommend books on tape for anyone who is driving long distances, they make the time fly by and keep you alert!

      • kristinp April 27, 2010, 11:01 pm

        I was just coming over to comment this! I get tons of books for long road trips from the library – my library even has a free download service so I can download to my computer and transfer to my ipod in about 2 minutes. Check out full cast recordings if you can – they’re addictive! The Philip Pullman Golden Compass series has a great recording that will motivate you through a few long rides!

    • laura April 27, 2010, 11:06 pm

      I was going to suggest the same thing – but check the website first, because a lot of libraries (especially in larger cities) have audiobooks as ipod/mp3 player-compatible downloads. mine does, through this program called OverDrive, and it’s the BEST. I love listening to super-fluffy chick lit way more than I like reading it, it’s fun and passes the time so well. I also highly recommend Elizabth Gilbert’s books on audiobook, because she reads them herself and she’s so incredibly charming and endearing.

  • Erin April 27, 2010, 10:04 pm

    Holy heck that’s awesome…over 5 and a half hours of biking?!?!? IMPRESSIVE, you rock!!!

  • Jill April 27, 2010, 10:06 pm

    You continue to inspire. Way to go!

  • Jessica @ The Process of Healing April 27, 2010, 10:07 pm

    Dang girl, you are AMAZING!!!! Seriously. Wow. I am impressed!! I hope that one day I can be as amazing as you! That just goes to show you that you can do ANYTHING you put your mind to! Thank you for being such an incredible role model!

  • Kate April 27, 2010, 10:07 pm

    Congrats on the ride! Such an accomplishment!

    My favorite audiobooks are any of David Sedaris’ books. He’s so funny in writing but his voice adds to the hilarity πŸ™‚

  • Camille April 27, 2010, 10:09 pm

    Oh my gosh, that is so impressive!
    Go you!

  • Heba April 27, 2010, 10:10 pm

    Hi Caitlin!

    Just came across your blog and I love it! I am really really impressed by the fact that you rode your bike for 73 miles! WOW. I can barely run a couple of miles without collapsing. But then again, I just started working out only a couple of weeks ago. So I have hope that I’ll see improvement over time. How long did it take for you to build this kind of endurance?

    Best of luck with the rest of your training! πŸ™‚

    -Heba

    • Caitlin April 27, 2010, 10:15 pm

      Hmm well I started to run and workout in 2007 but I seriously stepped it up about two years ago.

      • Caitlin April 27, 2010, 10:16 pm

        And thank you for reading!!!

        • Heba April 27, 2010, 10:26 pm

          Awesome! Keep it up πŸ™‚ You inspire me to push through and work out diligently (even when I really don’t feel like it!). My goal is to complete a 5K this summer (baby steps, haha…).

        • Caitlin April 27, 2010, 10:32 pm

          When I started I could only go 1/4 a mile without stopping! Everyone starts somewhere.

        • Heba April 28, 2010, 1:13 am

          Wow. That’s good to know. Now I don’t feel so super far behind. πŸ™‚ Thanks for the encouragement!

  • ashley April 27, 2010, 10:11 pm

    Very impressive ride! The Great Gatsby is definitely a classic, and I love it :-).

  • Tonyne @ The Unlikely Success Story April 27, 2010, 10:11 pm

    I have never exercised to audiobooks, but I did do the elliptical and weights to Two Fit Chick’s Podcast the other day. πŸ™‚

    Great job today, that is amazing!

  • meg c. April 27, 2010, 10:12 pm

    good lord. that bike ride sounds INSANE! glad you had the audiobook to keep you company. get more food in you, lady! 3000 cals is a lot to make up!

  • Merry April 27, 2010, 10:12 pm

    I haven’t wound up listening to any yet – but I’ve downloaded a couple of audio books. (Uh oh! Am I not supposed to say that here? I’m rather unsavvy about these things!)

    • Caitlin April 27, 2010, 10:16 pm

      did you steal them illegally?!

  • Jenna (Hello, I Love You) April 27, 2010, 10:13 pm

    Inspiring ride! I have only listened to one audiobook while working out and it was a book called Many Lives, Many Masters. My aunt gave it to me for my birthday. Really interesting and based on a true story about past-life therapy! Random but I really loved it. πŸ™‚

  • Megan (The Runner's Kitchen) April 27, 2010, 10:14 pm

    Hooray! Congrats. I love the idea of exercising while listening to an audio book. Way to multi-task πŸ™‚

  • Heather April 27, 2010, 10:15 pm

    the best books i read in 2009 were “Love Walked In” and “Belong To Me” which is the follow up to LWI. BOTH WERE AMAZING.

    Have you considered podcasts? I have a bunch of favorites – but you can find them on ANY subject/interest. My suggestions for you:

    1. THIS AMERICAN LIFE
    2. Selected Shorts
    3. Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me.

    i also love – Regional Best Foods (which i found through Tina when she was featured on it) and The Splendid Table. SO INTERESTING especially as I’m reading food blogs more often.

    You can also find “fan podcasts” for the tv shows you love most. not that i’m that obsessive or anything. ahem.

  • katie@ Fab.Fit.Full. April 27, 2010, 10:15 pm

    I actually used to listen to audiobooks at work and they are free on my town’s library website! maybe your library has them too?

  • Shelly April 27, 2010, 10:16 pm

    Good job! When I was training for my half marathon, I used to listen to Neil Gaiman’s Fragile Things on my long runs. I like it b/c it’s kind of creepy (but not too scary) and is a bunch of short stories instead of one long book- I found it was easier to follow.

    • Shelly April 27, 2010, 10:17 pm

      Oh and I also have run to Ender’s Game- it’s a good book to run too b/c Ender (the main character) is really driven and works really hard, so I found it to be very motivating, if that makes sense.

  • Amanda April 27, 2010, 10:17 pm

    I love running to audibooks, but they are so expensive! I usually end up listening to podcasts instead. My current favorite is Two Gomers Run a Marathon. They are hilarious and sometimes I laugh so hard I almost fall while I’m running.

  • Britt @ Runnerbelle April 27, 2010, 10:18 pm

    I download podcasts to workout to sometimes… actually there is a recent Radiolab episode you might like on limits. Just google radiolab and limits and you will find the episode…. it is about pushing your body & mind to its limit.

  • Rebeca April 27, 2010, 10:22 pm

    Wow… incredible. You inspire C!!

    I go to the library. I borrow things that interest me (most recently a re-“read” of the Omnivore’s Dilemna), upload to iTunes add to my iPod and go… I just delete it when I’m done… I figure it’s about equal to borrowing it and playing it on a CD player, right?

  • Heather April 27, 2010, 10:24 pm

    Congrats on the long ride!! If you can do 70+ miles by yourself, you’re gonna rock that century!

  • Molly @fuelherup April 27, 2010, 10:27 pm

    Awesome ride! You are fabulous!
    I’m the opposite…I have so much trouble getting started but the last part flies by! However, I haven’t exercised for 5 hours at a time so that have something to do with it πŸ˜‰

  • Lily @ Lily's Health Pad April 27, 2010, 10:33 pm

    I love F Scott Fitzgerald! I can read and re-read his books. I have a book recommendation! It’s actually a young adult book, but I still think you’ll like it. It’s about a young girl growing up in a polygamist colony. It’s called The Chosen One.

  • Cindy April 27, 2010, 10:33 pm

    You are awesome! I get tired and bored DRIVING 73 miles. LOL Keep up the good work!

  • Dori April 27, 2010, 10:36 pm

    NPR podcasts!! Endless hours of entertainment.

  • Jennifer April 27, 2010, 10:37 pm

    While your ride was certainly impressive, be sure to know your state’s laws regarding headphones and bike riding:
    http://www.floridabicycle.org/rules/bikelaw.html

    Headsets (see Section 316.304, F.S.)

    * A bicyclist may not wear a headset, headphone, or other listening device other than a hearing aid when riding. Wearing a headset blocks out important audio clues needed to detect the presence of other traffic.

    Wouldn’t want you to get in trouble, or worse, an accident!

    Good job on your training πŸ™‚

    • Caitlin April 27, 2010, 10:39 pm

      with only one earbud (right ear, away from traffic) and an audio book, it was definitely safe! although apparently against the law. LOL. i will add this to the very long list of laws i break. πŸ˜‰ rawr!

      • Kristine April 27, 2010, 10:56 pm

        Okay, I have to chime in here because I just do. I am studying audiology and learn all about the physics of sound and honestly, plugging up one ear with music is still just as bad as wearing two earphones. Even though you are only wearing one, it still impacts your ability to localize sounds (aka cars). I am only saying this as a caution! I can definitely understand wanting to wear an earphone while riding for so long, but it really isn’t safe!

        • Caitlin April 27, 2010, 10:58 pm

          Oh! I’m glad you’re studying this because now I’m curious. If I’m on the side of the road and thus cars can only be coming from behind me, would that impact my ability to ‘localize’ sound? I don’t really need to localize it, right? Because sound = cars coming.

          Also, isn’t it no different than riding next to someone and them talking to you? Or would that be different? Seriously, the audiobook was so light that I could actually hear the cars coming in both ears.

      • Cyclist Kate April 27, 2010, 10:58 pm

        I break that law, too. Yep, it’s unsafe (though I also turn the volume down low enough that I can hear all the traffic–and can’t hear my music when cars pass by), but I figure that 1) I’m an uber safe rider and follow every other traffic law on my bike and 2) those cops better be pulling over unsafe motorists who can actually kill somebody with their car before they pull me over for having earbuds in.

        • Kristine April 27, 2010, 11:04 pm

          Localizing sound just means being able to pinpoint exactly where the sound source is coming from. If you are wearing a headset, you might think it is closer or further away then it actually is. When you are a biker, you are kind of treated like another vehicle, right? So it is imperative for you to have all ears and eyes open! It is kind of like driving with headphones on, which is also illegal. I hope it makes sense! GREAT job on your incredible ride, by the way! πŸ™‚

        • Caitlin April 27, 2010, 11:06 pm

          i love physics! so interesting.

          thanks for sharing your knowledge!!

  • Mary @ What's Cookin' with Mary April 27, 2010, 10:37 pm

    I know it sounds a little odd, but I really enjoyed the audio book about Loius & Clark’s trip out west… It made the drive from Cali to Arizona fly by!

  • Julie @ Wearing Mascara April 27, 2010, 10:38 pm

    Wow you go girl! That’s a long time. I know what you mean about the end of the run/bike ride. I feel the same way!

  • Pamela April 27, 2010, 10:38 pm

    Hi Caitlin,

    I have been following your blog for about a year but have never commented! I really look forward to reading it each day, I love your positive attitude.

    73 miles on a bike is quite a feat! I’ve just begun riding seriously (about 20 miles every other day), and while I’m getting better, I think my poor form is keeping me from improving. (For instance, the urge to move my torso back and forth when conquering a hill..)

    Do you have any tips on learning proper form? How did you push through the beginning stages of cycling?

    πŸ™‚

    • Caitlin April 27, 2010, 10:42 pm

      aww thanks so much!

      20 miles every other day is impressive!

      it’s OK to move your body, but you might be more effective if you get out of your seat and climb standing up. put your hands on the hoods of the gear. it’s OK to swag your body side to side to help move the bike.

      also bicycling.com has great resources! http://bicycling.com/channel/0,6609,s1-4-0-0-0,00.html

      good luck!

      • Cyclist Kate April 27, 2010, 11:00 pm

        also, I’d say that if you’re having the urge to move your torso around while climbing, you probably need to shift down to an easier gear (trying to pull your ab and back muscles into the action probably means that your gear is too hard for your legs to handle on their own) and you might consider working on ab and back strength off the bike to stay stable. I swear, since I’ve been doing Pilates, I’m so much stronger and faster on the bike!

        • Caitlin April 27, 2010, 11:01 pm

          thanks kate! you always give the best cycling advice.

      • Nicole @ Geek Turned Athlete April 28, 2010, 1:39 am

        It’s also okay if you work on your “figure 8” in or out of saddle while going up hills. It is just a gentle swaying back and forth (not exaggerated or up and down). I practice this technique if I’m tackling a hill and I am in my easiest gear. If you do this too exaggerated, you will fall off you bike, and that is never good! Good luck!

  • Niki April 27, 2010, 10:39 pm

    YOU ARE AMAZING.

  • Joyce April 27, 2010, 10:40 pm

    I almost always listen to audio books when I do a cardio workout ( except biking.. might have to try that once I’m more comfortable with the cars).. I usually like something that is very light and not too thought provoking.. so I don’t lose concentration ( and fall down!) I like humor, mystery.. Author: diane mott davidson ( Character: Goldie Schulz, caterer and mystery solver) and author janet evanovich.. her character is Stephanie plum a bounty hunter, very funny.

  • Heather (Heather's Dish) April 27, 2010, 10:42 pm

    i’ve never worked out to an audiobook…but then again i’ve never worked out long enough to need one πŸ™‚

    p.s. that picture of you with the sunburn is GORGEOUS. but for real…SO pretty!

    • Caitlin April 27, 2010, 10:43 pm

      thanks πŸ™‚ im trying to embrace my makeup free face.

  • Olivia April 27, 2010, 10:43 pm

    I love that picture of you! Gorgeous! Awesome ride, too – well done!

  • emptynutjar April 27, 2010, 10:43 pm

    u r my hero…honestly

    if u want a flicky light laugh …sophie kinsella “remember me” reads like a movie

    how about biographies? they can be interesting, depending…

    classics of course like Huck Finn, Catcher In The Rye, etc…

    if u want something really really mindless and Oddly entertaining…pick up the Twilight series…or Percy Jackson series…i like fantasy!

  • Lisa (bakebikeblog) April 27, 2010, 10:45 pm

    love the audio book idea. I will have to keep that in mind for future rides πŸ™‚

  • Becca R. April 27, 2010, 10:49 pm

    wow, great job! In terms of audio books, you could check out the library and just burn cds onto your computer or check out free audio book websites, they aren’t great quality (narrators i mean) but they are free.

  • Cynthia (It All Changes) April 27, 2010, 10:50 pm

    I have some audio books and pod casts I’m only allowed to listen to on long runs and the like. I tend to pick something I really want to listen to so it will push me.

  • Megan April 27, 2010, 10:51 pm

    Way to go! I have a century ride on May 8th and I’m coming into it rather unprepared. I did 60 miles last weekend, I’ll do 80 this coming weekend then 100 the following! ah! I too found eating while biking is tricky, you may not feel hungry, but once you have food in you it can make loads if difference in your attitude and riding. Nice idea with the audio books too!

    • Caitlin April 27, 2010, 10:54 pm

      good luck on your century!

  • Erin April 27, 2010, 10:53 pm

    LOVED reading about the ride! It really makes me want to drop my exercise issues and start riding as well!

    A note about sunscreen: If your face is the biggest concern, a couple of the sunscreen manufacturers make face sticks, which would be easy to apply mid-ride and would definitely fit in your jersey. I have a WaterBabies one for my daughter. πŸ™‚

    • Caitlin April 27, 2010, 10:53 pm

      oh i didnt even think about waterbabies. i have one of those! thanks!

  • Teri [a foodie stays fit] April 27, 2010, 10:53 pm

    I love samosas – I’ll have to look for that Amy’s samosa wrap.

    I love listening to podcasts on long runs; one of my favorites is NPR’s “Wait Wait, Don’t Tell Me.” It’s funny, entertaining, and actually a pretty decent way to keep up on current events. Download a few since I think they are only an hour long.

  • ari April 27, 2010, 10:55 pm

    i agree, that’s a really pretty picture of you.
    also, on itunes they have lots of free podcasts. my favorite is True Fitness Academy. it’s these two guys in their 20s and they’re hilarious. most of their podcasts are them just rambling on about disney movies and other random stuff, and only about 1/4 of the time is them actually talking about fitness. but they’re really funny and entertaining. their podcasts are short, but you can listen to like 10 of them πŸ™‚

  • Mastering Public Health April 27, 2010, 10:59 pm

    Congratulations! That is INSANE! It seems like every day you’re achieving another amazing physical feat. (Seriously.)

  • Annie@stronghealthyfit April 27, 2010, 11:02 pm

    You are fierce, Caitlin πŸ™‚ Your athleticism is so inspiring!
    Btw, thanks for the email reply.

  • Wei-Wei April 27, 2010, 11:17 pm

    This is AMAZING! I’m so proud of you! The audiobook is a great idea to pass the time… although I’ve never exercised for so long I guess I should start training seriously! But in what sport…? :S

    Love the refueling… it’s a little crazy o.O

    Have a great night! You’re fabulous!

    Wei-Wei

  • Jenn April 27, 2010, 11:18 pm

    You are inspiring.
    I like to run to audio books. Lately I have been enjoying Bill Bryson and also like to download “This American Life” from NPR.
    Thank you for being an inspiration.

  • Christie April 27, 2010, 11:22 pm

    I haven’t tried books but I will listen to Podcasts sometimes. Lately I’ve listened to Loveline Podcasts (I am OBSESSED with Dr. Drew).

    I loved that you mentioned how our bodies rebel when we’re almost done! I remember running the same trail when i first got started and when passing that ‘1 mile left’ mark my body would start dragging! lol!

    Congrats on your ride! Good luck with your Century!

    ~Christie

  • eatingRD April 27, 2010, 11:23 pm

    I’ve always been afraid to listen to anything on bike rides to not be able to hear, but music always pumps me up. Maybe since it’s just as bad with one ear like Kristine said, I like to chat it up to make the miles fly by if I’m not huffing and puffing haha mmm love the re-fueling part.

  • Erin (Travel, Eat, Repeat) April 27, 2010, 11:35 pm

    Wow, incredible! The audiobook idea is great for a ride that could become monotonous like that. I listen to a lot of podcasts while I’m working out because they distract me so well — love This American Life and Radiolab.

  • liane April 27, 2010, 11:41 pm

    That is some impressive mileage!
    I’ve never used an audiobook before but I’ve listening to podcasts while on the cardio machines at the gym.

    Whenever I run a long loop around my house, I always am aware I’m so close to home, and all I want to do is stop! I’m physically unable to run anywhere near my house! Props to you for stopping at home and then continuing on, I somehow would have made scrubbing my toilets more appealing than going back out to finish my training!

  • Jessica @ Jessica Balances April 27, 2010, 11:44 pm

    I don’t know if you’re into beat poetry, but if you are, Derrick Brown has some awesome stuff that I think is a great mix of audio and music. One of my favorites that he does is called “kurosawa champagne” – also, anything by Donald Miller is AMAZING on tape! I love him. πŸ™‚

    • Caitlin April 28, 2010, 9:03 am

      beat poetry would be really interesting!

  • Jessica @ Jessica Balances April 27, 2010, 11:45 pm

    Oh, and congrats on an awesome ride, girl! You rocked it. Way impressive!

  • Kellie@obsessivelyhealthy April 27, 2010, 11:52 pm

    I have never downloaded a book on tape. What a great idea to make the time go by.

  • Michelle @ Give Me the Almond Butter April 27, 2010, 11:58 pm

    Wow way to go with the ride! I would gobble down twice that amount of food πŸ˜‰

  • Cassie @ A Very Busy Mind April 28, 2010, 12:08 am

    I’ve said it many times before, but posts like this one are the (biggest) reason I read. You can’t help but want to go out and be active after reading something like this!

    Inspirational as always, Caitlin!

  • Alyson @ Nourished Fitness April 28, 2010, 12:10 am

    All I can saw is ‘Wow!’ I’m been really interested in getting into cycling (I love Spin, and want to take it outdoors), but sadly I’m not in the place to invest in a bike right now. But I love following your training!

  • John April 28, 2010, 12:12 am

    You know you could have replayed the audiobook. At least you would have had something to listen to instead of silence. Nice job on getting the ride in. Your next long rides will only go better with what you learned today.

  • Bianca King April 28, 2010, 12:18 am

    How did you remain “fueled” enough to burn 2000+ calories yet only eat an almond butter sandwhich and energy snacks?

    • Caitlin April 28, 2010, 9:04 am

      well, i ate a HUGE breakfast right before i left, which definitely helped. the goal isn’t to replace all the calories you’re burning as you burn them (that would be really hard). even when you run a marathon, you might only take in 400 – 500 calories. your body stores energy in the form of glucose and glycogen, both of which you also tap into in addition to whatever food is in your belly.

  • lindsay April 28, 2010, 12:21 am

    Holy crap girl!!!! Seriously you rock that’s AMAZING!!

  • Morgan @ Life After Bagels April 28, 2010, 12:40 am

    I’m so happy to hear you were super sunscreen responsible before you left. You should get a little sample jar thing so that you can squirt what you want into the little jar before you go and you can just flick it open and reapply after an hour or two. I consider myself the sunscreen POLICE πŸ™‚

  • Natalie April 28, 2010, 12:46 am

    75 miles? OH my gosh! That’s amazing! And it makes me want to find a bike and ride it asap. haha As far as audiobook suggestions, what about a collection of short stories? That way if you miss something you’re not lost for the rest of the book, just for the next few pages. And if you’re not interested in the story there’s another different one on the way!

  • Jo April 28, 2010, 2:11 am

    Wow Caitlin, you really are totally awesome! I can’t imagine cycling that far. However, I also couldn’t imagine running 13 mile a few months ago πŸ™‚ With hard work and dedication, you prove that anything is possible.

    Way to go πŸ™‚

  • ida April 28, 2010, 2:37 am

    just thinking about a 75 mile bike ride makes me tired! you rocked it though, hope your knee’s okay.

  • Mama Pea April 28, 2010, 2:44 am

    You never cease to amaze me. I am in awe of you.

  • Freya @ Brit Chick Runs April 28, 2010, 2:57 am

    Wow, I’m in awe!! That is IMPRESSIVE!! I’d be bowled over if I did 10miles, let alone 75- you must be proud of yourself πŸ™‚
    The only audiobook I’ve ever done is New Moon – can’t say I was impressed πŸ™ could Bella moan anymore!?

  • Becky April 28, 2010, 5:20 am

    I am so impressed by your 73 miles! I can’t even imagine the mental and physical endurance needed to do that.
    I just wanted to chime in with a sunscreen suggestion. I’m so sorry about your burn! I’m very conscious about sun protection and wear sun screen every day, even in the UK. Can I recommend you buy something that is photostable? Neutrogena Dry Touch makes a good, and relatively affordable photostable sunscreen, although there are others out there too. That’s just what my dermotologist recommended. A lot of sunscreens basically decompose as soon as you go outside, thus making them much less effective. You really want to be wearing something with photostable UVA/UVB protection (look for ingredients like Meroxyl on the label). You’ll still need to reapply when biking/sweating/outside for extended periods, but it’s a much more complete protection.

    • Caitlin April 28, 2010, 9:05 am

      i think i need to go back to the store to get new sunscreen. i have a sport brand but it’s a little older. thanks for this recommendation!

  • Marina April 28, 2010, 5:46 am

    Great job! I really admire you.
    Yesterday I went for a bike ride, 18 mile or sth, and close to home, a car hit me :/
    I’m glad you did so great! Make sure you refuel enough πŸ˜‰

  • Julia @ British Bride April 28, 2010, 5:49 am

    WELL DONE GIRL! I am so very impressed. Awesome stuff.

    I have recently read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Its a murder mystery. Quite hard core stuff but very gripping – plus its a trilogy…

    The world seems to be going mad for the books but you might like them too. May be a bit scary on a secluded trail though as some bits are disturbing…DISCLAIMER!

    Have you read Harry Potter… that might also be a good one… I am trying to think of books that are long/ have sequels…

    Obviously you have done Twilight already!

    Julia

    • Jen April 28, 2010, 1:52 pm

      If you go with Harry Potter, try to get the version narrated by Stephen Fry. he does a fantastic job!

      And yeah, the books are long. The first few books run for between 8 and 12 hours, but the last four are all over 24 hours long.

  • Jessica @ WHY DONTCHA RUN April 28, 2010, 6:08 am

    What a trip! Congrats on the new distance and good luck on the long training days to come. What in the world are you going to do without your bike route around the airport when you move? I mean, I’m sure you’ll find somewhere new to ride, but it seems as though this is the perfect route for you. πŸ˜‰

    Can’t wait to see where the big move takes your fitness. I’ll be here reading. πŸ™‚

  • Jennie {in Wonderland} April 28, 2010, 6:17 am

    You are INSANE and I love it. 73 miles? I don’t even know what that is.

    Not to mention, your sun burn actually looks pretty – like permanent blush.

  • Jessica @ How Sweet It Is April 28, 2010, 6:21 am

    I can’t believe you did it alone. That is amazing – you really inspire me!
    I have never thought about working out to audiobooks (i don’t have workouts long enough) but that seems like a cool idea!

  • Beth April 28, 2010, 6:39 am

    Didn’t have a chance to see what others have said, but this site is great… especially if you like classics–and it’s free!
    http://www.booksshouldbefree.com/
    The library is a good source, too!
    Awesome on the bike ride! πŸ™‚
    Beth

  • Laine @ Beets, Butter & Moutaintops April 28, 2010, 6:46 am

    That is amazing! I love reading about your bike rides.

    My fear on long rides is a flat tire and not knowing how to fix it. I guess the solution to that is to learn!

    I signed up for Audible.com a while back, they were having a special so I downloaded whatever books I could and then canceled my membership.

    I got “Jane Eyre”(18 hours), “Glimpses of the Moon” (9 hours)by Edith Wharton, a very sweet and intriguing love story, some Barbara Kingsolver, and “The Painted Drum” by Louise Erdrich, 9 hours.

  • Nicki April 28, 2010, 6:56 am

    Way to go! I run with one ear bud in as the roads here have no shoulders and I like trying to find a way out of traffic.

  • Danielle April 28, 2010, 6:58 am

    After my last injury I’ve been doing LOONG walks instead of running and for the first time tried an audiobook to pass the time. I actually listened to Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food, which was not the most exciting, but did keep me in a health mindset while I was walking πŸ™‚

  • Courtney April 28, 2010, 6:58 am

    For a sunscreen that won’t sweat off try HeadHunter. You may have to go to a surf shop to find it, but it last really well and you can reapply when wet so it will last longer than the “sport” sunscreens or other brands such as waterbabies.

  • Jenna April 28, 2010, 7:11 am

    Wow! Great job πŸ™‚

  • Kate N. April 28, 2010, 7:35 am

    Check your library! I can ‘check out’ audio books from my local library for up to 2 weeks and put them on my iPod. And its free!

    Some favorites lately – Born to Run, Pride, Prejudice and Zombies and (forgot the name :/ ) book about the flu epidemic of 1918 that was so interesting to me I ran an extra 2 miles by accident!

  • Allie April 28, 2010, 7:47 am

    wow, amazing ride!! i love the great gatsby- i have read it so many times i can recite the begining and end. def a classic.

  • Wendy April 28, 2010, 7:47 am

    I saw a bunch of people recommended checking the library – that’s what I do, too! I recommend the In Death series by J.D. Robb, the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich (hilarious!), and, of course, the Twilight series. I think it’s fun to listen to books that I’ve already read – it’s a different way to experience the story.

    Great job on your ride!

  • Jen April 28, 2010, 8:05 am

    Great job Caitlin! You are such an inspiration! Great tip about exercising w/ a few dollars in your pocket. I always bring cash for water/ gatorade when I go on my long runs.

    Question: I want to start cycling but I am so scared to get hit by a car! How do you find safe places to bike? Any tips?

    • Caitlin April 28, 2010, 9:07 am

      if you are nervous about riding, i would recommend going to a paved trail to start off with. your city or county probably has a parks and recreation website where that info is listed. also google “rails to trails” to find a trail near you. lastly, cycling on the road is great (don’t be nervous!) as well as there is a shoulder/bike lane. check out a bike group in your area to see if there are any deserted highways they recommend.

  • Kelly @ Healthy Living With Kelly April 28, 2010, 8:10 am

    That is so awesome! I love audio books!! I buy mine at Half Price Books (do you have one of those??) for cheap and also take advantage of the library! Try something fun that doesn’t require you to think…chick lit. Have you read the Shopaholic series?

    • Caitlin April 28, 2010, 9:08 am

      yes i love the shopaholic series!

  • Courtney April 28, 2010, 8:51 am

    Awesome ride! I’m so impressed – and now really want to get out on my bike!

  • Therese April 28, 2010, 9:07 am

    That is amazing! Way to go!

    I’ve never listened to audiobooks while exercising but I hear people rave about them. I used to listen to podcasts while running which is similar though, it really does help to pass the time! I may do that again when I start training for my half in June!

  • Sara April 28, 2010, 9:14 am

    My library has downloadable audiobooks through a secondary website, not sure if yours has it, but I’ve used it in both NJ and CT, so it is worth checking out.

  • katherine April 28, 2010, 9:17 am

    I adore audiobooks. I actually rented two movies to play on my iPhone when I had to run 23 miles on a treadmill and they SAVED me. Sometimes music just won’t cut it, huh?

  • Joanne April 28, 2010, 9:32 am

    Good ride. I can’t believe you can actually go home then head out again. I can’t even go close to our house when I’m out on a run unless it’s to finish the run.
    The next time you do the 73 plus miles, it will seem that little bit easier.

  • Katie April 28, 2010, 9:33 am

    I always listen to audiobooks in the car, but lately I’ve started listening to graphic audiobooks! It sounds a little funny, but my boyfriend (a musician) listens to them when he’s on the road with his band. I listened to one about the Flash during a long run, and it was corny, but pretty fun!

  • Tara April 28, 2010, 9:43 am

    Holy buckets!

    My commute to work is 28 miles each way and takes me 45 min in the morning and over an hour on the way home. You went FARTHER ON YOUR BICYCLE THAN MY ENTIRE ROUNDTRIP COMMUTE!

    That kind of blows my mind. I would never even THINK about biking my commute distance!! Way to go!

  • Chrissy April 28, 2010, 9:46 am

    I did a 72 mile ride last year and relied on the rest stops for food. Bad idea! At mile 50-something they served sandwiches. Awesome. All the sandwiches were meat based and I’m a vegan. NOT AWESOME. The last fifteen miles were killer because I needed a MEAL and not a pickle or a banana. Next time, I will pack PB&J’s. Like five of them.

    Congrats on your ride! I can’t imagine riding a 12 mile loop for 72 miles. Brave lady!

  • ActiveEggplant April 28, 2010, 9:53 am

    Awesome ride – my longest is only 32 miles so far but me & my hubby want to do a cross-florida tour someday so I’ve got to start piling on the miles like you are!

    Great idea about the audio book – you’ve inspired me to download some “Car Talk” podcasts – those guys are HYSTERICAL and would totally keep me entertained!

  • Elizabeth April 28, 2010, 10:14 am

    I second all of the sunscreen recommendations (a stick for your face – I use a Neutrogena SPF30 one and it stays on for at least 2 sweaty hours), and I will raise you one: both REI (and similar sporty stores) and the Container Store have awesome refillable squeezy tubes that you can put sunscreen in for travel/long workouts. That way, you can travel with the sunscreen you really like, rather than whatever comes in a smaller size.

  • Kacy April 28, 2010, 10:40 am

    That is so fracking far!!! Did you just loop the 12 miles over and over again? MAN! I love The Great Gatsby though. Such a classic.

    • Caitlin April 28, 2010, 10:47 am

      yes, torture.

  • Kristy April 28, 2010, 10:45 am

    Audio Books are great! Daily they get me through this hell they call “work”.

  • Shannon April 28, 2010, 11:36 am

    Good for you! I travel a lot with work and found out that you can rent audio books at cracker barrel- random, but they have a good selection!

  • Rae April 28, 2010, 11:58 am

    GREAT JOB!!! Just PLEASE be careful if youre going to listen to ANYTHING on your bike…honestly, its really unsafe if there are going to be any cars around at all. They dont pay attention, you need to. And if youre on your bike for any length of time, you ge tired and its that much harder. Just my two cents….i think youre really awesome and I dont want you to get hurt!!

  • Rae April 28, 2010, 11:58 am

    GREAT JOB!!! Just PLEASE be careful if youre going to listen to ANYTHING on your bike…honestly, its really unsafe if there are going to be any cars around at all. They dont pay attention, you need to. And if youre on your bike for any length of time, you ge tired and its that much harder. Just my two cents….i think youre really awesome and I dont want you to get hurt!!

  • Amber K @ sparkpeople April 28, 2010, 11:59 am

    Ahh, audiobooks! What a neat idea. But this is exactly why I like the gym, I have to have headphones on both ears, it drives me batty hearing out of only one.

  • Carolyn @ lovinlosing April 28, 2010, 12:18 pm

    Awesome job on your training ride!!!

  • Susan April 28, 2010, 12:22 pm

    Umm yeah. So you are my hardcore bike hero πŸ˜‰ I can’t imagine dedicating that amount of time to something, amazing!! I’ve also never thought of listening to audio books during long bike rides, as I don’t usually have a bike partner. That’s a great idea! The one thing I dislike about cycling is how boring it can get sometimes.

    Hopefully you’re feeling more confident about the century now πŸ™‚

  • Cristin April 28, 2010, 12:25 pm

    I don’t know any good audiobooks but I listen to podcasts sometimes. My favorite ones are This American Life and The Moth podcasts. You can get them both on itunes. They are all an hour or under but you can make a playlist to string them all together for the length of your ride (or run). Sometimes I even learn a thing or two!

    Good luck on your future rides!

  • Lisa April 28, 2010, 12:34 pm

    That’s funny-I start to hurt at the very end of the bike ride too. For me it’s always neck and shoulder pain rather than leg or back pain. I haven’t figured out yet how to remedy that. I try to stretch and move my head as much as possible when I stop to rest.

  • Kate April 28, 2010, 12:40 pm

    I like listening to audiobooks when I’m not pushing myself–anytime I do a longer workout.

    I know the dang things are expensive, but have you tried looking at the library? Mine has a wide range of auidobooks on cd and also offers download-able books as well.

  • Bree April 28, 2010, 1:17 pm

    I like listening to podcasts on long runs. Makes the time go by really fast!

  • Jenn (www.j3nn.net) April 28, 2010, 1:29 pm

    Wow!! That’s incredible 😯 CONGRATS!! I’d probably pack so much food + drink it would slow me down, LOL. πŸ˜€

    Jenn

  • Heather ODonnell April 28, 2010, 2:09 pm

    I listen to podcasts when I work out. But I always keep an eye on itunes. Every once in a while they have a free audio book download. They usually aren’t anything that I would buy on my own, but for free I will almost always check it out.

  • LadyLara April 28, 2010, 2:43 pm

    Could you play your iphone on speaker mode in your bento box? I wouldn’t use the earbuds, even just one. Find a partner for those long rides, girl!

  • Kelly (the Running Phoodie) April 28, 2010, 3:23 pm

    those samosa wraps are the greatest, aren’t they?

  • Amanda (Amanda "runs") April 28, 2010, 4:15 pm

    Dang! That’s impressive! (Especially coming from me- I can’t ride a bike. Never learned!) My grandfather gets podcasts sometime, I forget what website he uses.
    Suggestions:
    Find longer audiobooks
    Get a partner to ride with!

    Last night they sang a song on Glee and the message was “You’re beautiful” and I thought “I MUST tell Caitlin!”
    (PS~ You look BEAUTIFUL even with the face burn! It only makes you look hotter! Get it?)

    • caitlin April 28, 2010, 5:01 pm

      thanks babe! i heard the entire episode was very operation beautiful centric.

  • Kath April 28, 2010, 8:31 pm

    Great ride Caitlin!!!

  • Corinne April 29, 2010, 3:12 pm

    I really really enjoyed listening to the four agreements by don miguel ruiz on audio cd. I can see it being very inspirational during a work out too! good luck! πŸ™‚

  • Erin April 29, 2010, 3:36 pm

    I love working out with audiobooks. It makes time pass much quicker. CONGRATS on 73 miles! THATS SOMETHING TO BE PROUD OF!

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