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RACV Great Vic Ride 2010 on a Scooter

August 15, 2011 1 Comment

Okay… okay… I bow to pressure and verbal threats… finally here’s the details of my adventures at last year’s Great Vic Ride… only 7 months late…

The 2010 RACV Great Victorian Bike Ride was from Yarrawonga to Marysville and featured Lakes, Rivers and Ranges. Yup! I can testify to that – we rode up magnificent ranges, saw lots of swelling rivers, and slept in a lake due to forgetting to waterproof our tent… Here’s the first two days…

Day One: Yarrawonga to Dookie 71km

Linda and I pre-ride having fun

Eddie (best brother-in-law on the whole planet) drove Linda (best sister-in-law on the whole planet) and I to Yarrawonga for the ride.

This year we decided not to pre-camp as we did last year. We stayed a night before at a hotel – enjoying our last night of normal beds and comfortable showers. Our accommodation had this massive jumping thingy that kept us entertained for ages… laughed so much I cried.  Then Linda and Ed had a dip in the pool while I sat in the sun… this little Queenslander refused to strip down in the cold afternoon! Hot in the morning, stifling by lunchtime, chilly in the afternoon, and then bloody freezing at night… where are we? Hmmm… let me think – it must be Victoria!  LOL

The morning of the ride Eddie drove us to the starting line and helped us carry our luggage into the campsite. There we joined the queue to load our bags onto the last of the luggage trucks.

Eddie having fun!

Then Linda and I were off with the other 4000 riders ready to tackle 590km through the heart of Victoria in Summer!

The first day’s ride was flat, very hot and featured a stifling headwind.

We saw lots of familiar faces from last year and chatted to a few. One lady informed me that she was a regular visitor to the footbike site and enjoyed my journalistic prowess from last year… sending out a big ‘hi’ to you! One of the Police Officers (who we met last year) informed me this year that there are people I can talk to about my ‘problem’. LOL
 
Because I was so hyped about getting to the ride and finishing the first day, I forgot to eat. Yes, I know that’s hard to believe that when my most favourite subjects on the planet include filmmaking, my birds, and food! I pocketed the food we got for lunch and convinced Linda to keep riding so we could get to the campsite and set up. She managed to munch on an apple and a sandwich as we rode, often chatting at me through a mouthful of food. Dummy me just kept riding.

I also failed to drink enough water 🙁   Don’t I ever learn???

Having ridden 65km in sweating heat with only an apple from early that morning I started to suffer. For the last 5km of the ride I started getting cramps in my calves and hamstrings. Linda and I stopped every km so I could stretch out, and then at the 70km mark stopped 500m from the campsite for another stretch. Linda cycled beside me for the last 500m, her hand on my bum, pushing me along… did I mention that she’s the best sister-in-law in the entire universe?

Sooooooooooooo happy to arrive at the camp. Linda and I marvelled that the campsite must house the entire cast of extras from the Skippy series, because we had to shuffle and hop to avoid the roo pooh that covered the paddocks! Yo! Skippy! Get a pooper-scooper!

We set up our tent and collapsed inside just as the heavens opened and it poured with rain.

Pain! Leg cramps while being chastised by hubby on phone.

Linda put up with my whinging for the next half hour as the cramps in my legs kept hitting at 1 minute intervals… my hammies… and now my quads. Just as I’d stretch a quad, my hamstring and calf would cramp, then as I’d stretch them, the quad would hit again.

It was then that I realised I hadn’t peed all day, and logic finally returned. I began stuffing myself with food and water. I ate lunch (like I should have done earlier) and scoffed down a bottle of Powerade diluted with water. We then filled up on dinner and waddled back to our tent through the pouring rain.

My legs were sore from the cramps, but at least the actual cramping had subsided.

During the night I woke busting for the loo. With the amount of water I had consumed since arriving at camp I couldn’t wait for morning. I woke Linda because I didn’t want her to wake and find me gone. She screamed, which nearly released my already bursting bladder.

What the – ???

Apologizing profusely, she explained that she thought I was a wombat that had climbed into our tent and was attacking her…

Yeah… of course, just what I suspected…

DAY TWO: Dookie to Euroa – 84km

It poured raining all night until 5am, and the campsite was aslosh with mud… and roo pooh! Blearh!

I made sure to eat a heartier breakfast today, and pocketed some bread and peanut butter for later. Linda and I hit the road at 8.30am and took on the Strathbogie Ranges. Boy! Were there some hills! But even though it was hard going, I enjoyed the ride today more than yesterday. And the big upside was: no cramps!

Lots of people walked their bikes up the long hills, and I was relieved to find out we were 15km out from the lunch stop. But I must admit those 15kms peeled away slowly… centimetre by centimetre… Going up one hill my kicking foot slipped on a loose stone and the heel of my shoe went under the kickbike plate, stopping the bike for a second. I uttered the ‘good old s-word’ and followed up with the ‘f-bomb’ half a second later as when the bike stopped I didn’t, and I bashed my left knee on the frame. Oh joy! I now had an egg on my knee and sported a not so cheery disposition.

At this point I stopped and had a SIS Sports Gel and was very impressed with the results. It didn’t feel gooey and sickening like some of the sports gels I have used in the past. It went down smoothly… and I know this is probably just psychological… it felt like it instantly started doing good things to my body. I was suddenly in a better mood. Sugar boost? Possible Egg-knee numbing properties? Who knows – but it worked.

A man yelled out “Oi! You’re the girl with the gorgeous legs! Welcome back!” I then recognized him as the man who called me ‘hot legs’ everytime he saw me last year. I took off after him up the hill.

We met up with Jeremy the ABC Reporter along the way, and he asked if he could interview me again this year. Need he ask? Of course – I’m a media bunny, by all standards!

A lovely man told me that his two daughters had been totally besotted with me from the previous year. He thanked me for inspiring them to keep going during the hard parts of the ride as he suspected they would have given up otherwise. Now, that’s definitely fuel for the thrill-bumps.

Just like the song says “What goes up, must come down…” the Strathbogie Ranges presented a huge down-hill for us. Yay!

Some people came off their bikes on the descent (ouch!) and the Police slowed us down for safety. We heard later that two of the riders who crashed went to hospital – a girl with a broken collarbone and a guy with a shredded foot… shudder… 

It was very cold and windy at the campsite, but we were thankful that at least there was no rain. Don’t they say that in Melbourne you experience all four seasons in one day?

We ate a full meal and I also scoffed down a bag of chips and a litre of water. I wasn’t taking any more chances of cramps after yesterday’s lesson.

After stretching out sore muscles that still ached from yesterday’s cramping, Linda and I finally fell into our sleeping bags and slept.

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  1. Karen Toll says:

    Fun story as usual! I guess you will keep us all in suspense until day 3 is posted. Look forward to it.

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