Monday, September 11, 2006

my first "century"

Bike Against the Odds

The bike club I am a part of, the Oakland Yellowjackets, sponsors a century fundraiser for breast cancer. I raised a bunch of money and figured I would train for my first hundred miles! It was going to be a real hard course-- with 10,000ft of climbing! Whoa. I was very excited to try such a challenging century for my first one. Sadly, though, I ended around mile 85 cause I had a bad fall... Here is the re-cap.

  • Started my first 100 miles little before 7am with encouraging words of "of course you'll finish!" by the best cheering squad ever at the lake. Yellowjackets rule!
  • Got through the fog and through the zoo - which was cool. I had never done that part of Skyline.
  • Coming out of the zoo, a dutchman (name Bart) caught up with me and we rode together for most of the rest of way. It went like this. I would kick his ass on the uphills and he would catch up on the downhills. He was really cool, and gave me a bunch of pointers on downhill riding. We drafted and took pulls for almost all of Moraga Rd/Camino Pablo/San Pablo Dam Rd. It was great to have someone to ride with.
  • I got to the top of pig farm and the women at the top were very nice and gave me a green popsicle and told me I was the first woman and the fourth person! I couldn't believe it!
  • Then I stopped for lunch a little before 11am. I couldn't believe how fast I was going. I felt great.
  • Probably around mile 70-75, I was starting to feel fatigued. Deerhill felt pretty hard, it was short, but brutal. I knew I still had Happy Valley, Papa bear, and Wildcat to go. Going up Happy Valley was okay....
  • The coming down was the problem. I even said to myself: "slow down, this is hard." And I braked as hard as my arms could go, but I just couldn't on that last switch back and fell in and skidded. I must have fallen on a big rock, cause my knee looked pretty nasty cause I could see all the way to my knee cap. I figured it was best to keep moving. Plus, adrenaline and shock had kind of kicked in so I just made a left on bear creek and went up papa bear to the rest stop on San Pablo Dam Road. I was bleeding a bunch and it didn't look so good.
  • While riding up papa bear, I contemplated finishing... but I knew that was probably a bad idea. My brake hoods were all fucked up, and I knew I had some big hills to go down. Better judgment took the hold of me once.
  • When I got to the rest stop Chrissie and some other yellowjackets were there, and were really nice. They called the paramedics and couldn't believe I biked from happy valley...but the whole thing was kind of a blur to me.
  • On the ups, the parademic was really cute. I was talking a lot of shit in the ambulance, like about my pulse rate being really low and beating the dutchman.
  • In the ER, I had to wait on the gerny a long time because things like "blood clots in the brain" and "heart attacks"get triaged first.... I was waiting awhile (like a couple of hours), and then it started to hurt and I wasn't very happy. I kept getting "ooooo" looks from nurses walking by.
  • It was my own fault, cause I was being such a tough girl. When the doctor asked if i needed painkillers, I said no. And when they asked how bad it hurt I said a "3". I could see all the way down to my knee cap! Doctors shouldn't listen to idiots like me in the ER.
  • I was pretty bummed cause I was laying in the hallway for a couple of hours. Then a guy Malcolm took my xray. At that time, I was hurting a lot cause then it had been several hours and shock wore off and I was sad I didn't finish the ride, and probably wouldn't be able to go to Monteray ride with the yellowjackets. Malcolm, though cheered me up by telling me, "Lance Armstrong won the tour with only one testicle. You are only missing some skin."
  • Once I got morphine at 4pm I was feeling great! My nurse, Noreen, was great and so was everyone else. Morphine is great!!! I kept chattering away about the dutchman who I was beating and was very excited. I was a trip.
  • Noreen cleaned me for over an hour, flushed me with a bunch of fluids. She was really cool. She was going to cut off my bike shorts. But I only have one pair, so I talked her out of it, and she slid them off. When this was happening, the morphine kicked in and i said: "Noreen! My mom always told me to wear clean underwear in case I go to the hospital....but I am not even wearing underwear!" Man, I was crazy.
  • Then the general surgeon came in to sew me up. He was cool. He was worried about infection, so he cleaned me again. Another bag of fluids. Then he decided he wanted an orthopedic consult cause I might have bone exposure and would need to go into surgery.
  • I waited a loooong time. And still no IV! I was very thirsty and hungry. At one point I nearly fainted cause I went to the bathroom and all the blood rushed out of my head.
  • When the orthopedist came I told him not to mess up my knee because I am training for the 2012 olympics...but I don't think he thought I was too funny. In fact, the orthapedist wasn't too funny in general. He said he was going to operate. Then said he didn't need to. Then he scraped at my knee with these sponges and it hurt a lot. I was trying to crack jokes while he was doing this, but he wasn't having it. I mean, he was scrapping away in my knee-- he should have been happy I was cracking jokes and not screaming out in pain...
  • The worst part of the hospital visit was that they wouldn't give me an IV. I think the nurses thought I was joking when I kept asking for one-- but all I really wanted was an IV because I was so thirsty after riding 85 miles...and very hungry too-- but they wouldn't let me eat or drink anything.
  • I didn't get home til 9:45pm. Long day!

Long story short is I have some loose stitches in my knee that will come out in a couple of weeks. I am in a brace and can't bend my leg until the stitches come out. But they think I can be back on the bike in three weeks or so -- just when the stitches come out. I am not too worried and am just enjoying my Vicodin.