May 2009 Edition of the 111 Miles of Nowhere

100 (111) Miles of Nowhere Criterium

My route was .93 miles.

120 laps and 7 hours and 14 minutes of pedaling!

I cycled a 111 mile cancer criterium to raise awareness and funds for the LIVESTRONG® Challenge supporting the Lance Armstrong Foundation.

I tweeted as I rode @bebow. (

I pedaled the block surrounding Airmen’s Heritage Park on Randolph Air Force Base on Friday, May 22, 2009 starting at 5:39 A.M.

I had several visitors throughout my ride; hence, the 1.5 hour difference in my on the road vs. overall time. Friends and coworkers started visiting me at 7:00 AM on their way to work. I also texted with friends and ‘twittered’ all day long.

One of my co-workers ran a half-marathon opposite me–so we saw each other about a zillion times. Thanks for the encouragement Darryl, but thanks, especially for not keeling over in my path. 🙂 Well, done.

Ride Statistics

Century Time: 6:32:47

111 Miles Time: 7:14:34

Overall Time: 8:44:56

Average Speed: 15.3 MPH

Average HR: 132 BPM

Elevation Gain: 3,043 FT

Calories Burned: 9,527

Temperature: 70 F

I strapped some mini speakers and iPod to my bike (first time I’ve tried that). I anticipated much boredom from endless loops. I am SO glad I brought the iPod. I listened to several of my favorite podcasts including The Fredcast Cycling Podcast.

I conveniently had SAG support or food opportunities every .93 miles. The park I rode around had a building in case I needed to take a ‘natural break’.

A long-time friend stopped to talk for longer than I expected. It’s been so long since we talked that I was happy to make the ‘sacrifice’ of delaying my ride for a while.

It started slowly raining then I got absolutely soaked in a torrential (typical) Texas downpour. Fortunately, after the rain stopped I had an extra pair of socks and put them on. Everything else dried off by riding. Unfortunately, I had to slow down because I was sliding in the corners.

It was odd actually watching the roads dry for the next several hours. Finally, the corners dried up enough for me to speed up again.

At lunch time several different car loads of people from my office dropped by. It sure was nice to see some smiling, friendly faces. I got to regale my harrowing adventures of the morning several times, but I was happy to. One group cracked me up with their signs (see picture below).

I had top-notch SAG support. There was plenty of food and drink also. Could not have asked for better support staff (me)…

I needed the tools to remove my audio when it started pouring and put it back on later.

Gatorade, water, Carb-Boom gels, PB&Js, banana, Clif bar, and fig bars.

Mini-speakers with iPod. Cable ties make life so much easier. Don’t worry, that’s a reflection on my Garmin Edge 305; it’s not a dead screen. Yes, that’s double-rolled tape on my handlebars; that’s the way I like it.

I’m turning backward to snap this pic of a NOISY train. Fortunately, did not see the train too many times.

Some of the folks from my office who stopped by at lunch time. They’re holding up signs that say, “Go MSgt Bebow Go.” You guys were awesome.

I drove by a dead bird 120 times. I’m putting it on here for therapy purposes. It helps to talk about it, right? 95 times I thought, “I don’t want dead bird on my wheels.” 50 times I thought, “I should pull over and get the bird out of the road.” 20-30 times I thought, “I should snap a picture for posterity’s sake.” Guess, which one I did?

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My lovely wife stopped by around lunch time on her way to work. I sat on the ledge of our minivan and we chatted for a few minutes.

Well, since I got soaked you may have figured out it was overcast most of my ride (and I was okay with it). Also, my bike got very dirty from riding a few hours in the rain and on wet streets.

When I passed the 100 mile mark, I felt happy to have another century in the books. Now, I was going for the gravy. Once I passed 103.6 (my previous ride record), I was floating along exuberantly.

Dwight was waiting for me around mile 104. We chatted very briefly and he took off.

I got a text from Darryl (half-marathon guy) around mile 107 and he asked me if I was done. I think I texted how much I had to go. He and Mercedes showed up a little while later. They drove along with me for a few seconds and then said they’d meet me at the finish line. They cheered me through the last couple laps and took some pictures with me at the ‘finish line’.

Mark stopped by while I was packing up my gear. We chatted for a few minutes and he reminded me to stretch–glad he did.

I finished packing up and headed home. Left over rotisserie chicken and mashed potatoes awaited me which I ate ravenously.

My poor, dirty bike. I gave her a good scrubbing on the next morning.

The cheering crowd. Thanks, Darryl and Mercedes. You rock. Thanks for the donations, too!

Smiling at the finish line. 111 miles behind me.

About the Lance Armstrong Foundation

The Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) unites people through programs and experiences to empower cancer survivors to live life on their own terms and to raise awareness and funds for the fight against cancer. The LAF focuses on cancer prevention, access to screening and care, research and quality of life for cancer survivors. Founded in 1997 by cancer survivor and champion cyclist Lance Armstrong , the LAF has raised more than $250 million for the fight against cancer. Join 60 million LIVESTRONG wristband wearers and help make cancer a national priority. Unite and fight cancer at .

To register or to learn more about the 2009 LIVE STRONG Challenge, call 888.4.CHALLENGE (888.424.2553) or visit .