Gearing up for the Grizzly Peak Century!

East Bay Ride
View from Grizzly Peak Blvd.

This weekend I aimed to prep for next week's Grizzly Peak Century by riding most of the course. I did the Pinehurst - Grizzly Peak Loop and the North Loop. I am planning on doing the car-free start so I will miss the first part, but will have tucked away some miles and climbing in just getting to Tilden. At first I was worried about doing this ride unsupported, but there are plenty of restrooms and water stops: Sibley Visitor Center on Skyline, on Wildcat Canyon Rd. in Tilden at the Island Picnic Area, Pinole, and in Briones at the Archery Range. The Orinda BART has a nice big restroom that you can pull your bike into it and a water fountain. My last water stop was at East Bay Coffee in Pinole and that got me to the end of the ride.

 My Strava

Against my better judgement, I had a bulletproof-style coffee in the morning for breakfast. I usually run on carb fuel, but decided to try it. I wasn't quite feeling it, so had another 2 cups while getting my bike packed. When I was sitting on BART, it really started to hit me and I had the most uncomfortable caffeine anxiety buzz while trying to sit still on the train. Maybe next time only one cup! It did seem to provide me with ample energy.

East Bay Ride
Get ready to fly down San Pablo Dam Road

It had just rained so there was a lot of debris that had washed out into the roadway; wet leaves, branches, twigs, grit and gravel. I had to stop at one point and unclog my fork of wet leaves that had got packed in there. It was a bit chilly, and I had almost wished I brought the long pants. I think I will stick to the leg warmers that I can peel off because it did get pretty hot later in the afternoon on the Bears. All the climbs were manageable, with some really fun descents. Expect to work. I think the worst is Mc Ewen! It is a sudden change in grade and is pretty steep! The first part is 12% grade according to Strava.

Snacks at East Bay Coffee in Pinole

I finished the 75.8 mile ride in leisurely time of 7:43 (moving time 6:18) with a bagel lunch stop at East Bay Coffee and felt pretty strong, so I think I can survive adding the south loop. I used Osmo, Hammer Perpetuem, and then an S.O.S. as post-ride recovery. I ate Bullet Proof Coffee for breakfast (my bad), 2 packs of Clif shot blocks, half a peanut butter and banana sandwich, a bagel with cream cheese, OJ, and a Rip Van Wafel for lunch. I'm looking forward to all the good rest-stop food at the GPC!

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