We entered the beginning of 2014 all gung ho, training hard and pushing each other just so that we would prepare for it. Then Murphy's Law struck, Andy had to have tailbone surgery a couple months before the event. The surgery kept Andy off of a bike for the rest of the time leading up to the epic. We were way past the time of refund, Andy was possibly able to transfer his entry to 2015 and I decided I give it a shot solo, at least if the opportunity rose for both of us to go again I'd have some experience and know what were were getting into.
My home for the next week at bicycle summer camp
Being a guy that likes keeping tires on the ground and climbing rather than going downhill I knew this was not going to be my favorite day. I tucked in my skirt after 3 of the 5 stages, they were progressively getting more hard core and after Coyne's run (which was awesome!) I knew that was my limit so I packed it in early for the day and met a couple new friends at the Epic in state college for some beers!
The least technical of the stages was a much needed break from being rattled by all the rocks, I teamed up with Kevin my drinking buddy from the night before it was nice to have some company on another long day on the bike. The climbing was crazy only downside to this is that they said this stage had 4,300' of climbing-it had 7,000 and my first Cat 2 climb but I was stoked to be four days in and do a ride like this without cramping on falling apart. Six months ago I probably could barely do this ride in my best shape!
I got husband of the year award way early, on my way home surprised Corianne at her work and let her know my plan. This by far was my favorite ride of the week, not only did I still feel relatively good but I got to ride around with a lot of my fellow Ohio mtb'rs. I started the race off riding with Tim and as I ran into other people I would spend some time riding with them, sometimes being motivating, sometimes just yelling for no reason, sorry for those that don't know me that I probably annoyed. At the first aid station I stopped and waited for Corianne and Lisa then rode the rest of the ride with them. They did a great job and we even convinced someone at the second aid station that was about to quit to keep moving forward with us. I don't remember his name but he finished and earned his pint glass!