THE BIKE – OUT OF CONTROL!!
I have always admitted that being on the bike turns me into a different person! If you want a war you will get one and this was no different, at times I was out of control. I became totally consumed and obsessed by what Kale was doing. 18 hour rides, I tried in vain to sleep but I lay awake listening to see if Kale was moving. It was hopeless I just couldn’t relax!!!
I had amassed a 100km (62 Mile) lead while Kale continued to swim. I was happy I wasn’t the one chasing. We would both sneak out while the other was sleeping it became crazy. My first meltdown occurred as I woke from a short sleep, Pete was worried about me and I looked terrible. I couldn’t operate my brain, Pete was asking me questions I just couldn’t answer. Deca had started in earnest. I was a lost soul, no sleep, long days in the saddle, I was shot and Pete asked me to make a decision! “Ride on” or “Sleep”. A quick snack and I chose to ride on! It took me an age to reach a final decision but it was the right decision. “Beyond Exhaustion” I was there and it felt scary!!
I cried on the bike, the rash in my groin was so painful at one point I rode for 15 hours out of the saddle, I thought about how I would possibly run. Every time I stopped for a break getting back into the saddle was pure hell! It reduced me to tears………We rode for days on little or no sleep and it just got worse. We attacked each other constantly, it was relentless, tearing round the circuit! Common sense and good advice from fellow athletes fell on deaf ears, this was a raging battle!!
Pete would stand on the track side waving his arms pleading with me to ease up, it was no use I had the bit between my teeth Kale had applied the pressure again and I simply wouldn’t let it go. I just don’t know where it came from. I latched onto Kari Martin, arguably one of the best ultra-athletes in the world. We smashed the course, lap after lap at high speed like a steam train, it was the middle of the night and I was loving it! I was doing what I loved most and I had a new phrase “Lets Smoke It”.
At one point Kale came alongside me in tears and said “Why are we doing this to each other”? “This is just crazy man”. We both cried, we both laughed, we couldn’t answer the question! It wasn’t too long before one of us ripped into the other, testing, probing, simply looking for a weakness!!
I lost count of the number of times I approached Pete and said “Sorry”!! The plan worked as we entered the last day in the saddle. I left Pete in bed asleep as I sneaked out. I was on the circuit alone building up the gap. I texted Pete from the canteen to tell him we were still 100km ahead. The final day was 300km (185 miles) and that evening I would start the run!!! Despite the unbelievable pain and suffering I adore the bike. Sudocrem was my saviour along with a gel saddle kindly donated by Suraya. My crutch was absolutely destroyed, at times the pain was unbearable!!
Phase 2 was over and I didn’t think the suffering could get any worse? It did………………..far worse!!