Tour de Hans finished off my cycling event for the year. I was pumped heading to the ride, yet put a lot of pressure on myself to end the season well. This Gran Fondo Style race takes riders along the scenic Waterloo Region, followed by post-ride Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest celebrations. Big thanks to all the police for the traffic control and to all the spectators for the support.
It was another spectacular turnout. The horns and sirens that started off the ride was a bit startling for me. During the 5km neutral rollout, my legs felt a bit thick. I knew immediately it won’t be the freshest ride.
The 1st hour of the ride went really well, averaging over 30kph. Perhaps too well because I was already burned out before 1.5 hours. I was able to hang with several groups for the most part during the first 50km. We were forewarned to take caution when riding through the West Montrose Covered Bridge but I found it quite enjoyable.
The last 50km felt simply pathetic. I was dropped, yet again. I should be used to it by now, but it affected me a lot that day to the edge of almost giving up. Once my mind gave up, my whole body followed suit. There was nothing left in my legs, I ate all the wind, and pretty much pulled myself through to the finish. There were long stretches where I was pacing at 22-24kph, totally dragging my average pace down. This route was not considered hilly but it just felt like a constant incline once I hit Waterloo.
Finally, motivation came at 90km when I saw the “10km to Finish” countdown signs. My mind snapped back in action at last and ended the ride like it should.
Famished and a bit deflated, I went inside the KOOL HAUS tent for some Oktoberfest lunch. I couldn’t find the Schnitzel nor the sauerkraut anywhere and went for the sausage instead which was delicious. The mustard on top was quite tasty with a hint of sweetness. The Official Keg Tapping and Award ceremony finished off the event.
I thought I would be sad after this ride since it was the last one, but in a way, it came at a perfect time. My cycling fire is a bit extinguished. It’s time to take a break and regain that drive. Until next year!!