So this past weekend I completed the Shiner 1/2 GASP (the Great Austin to Shiner Pedal). It is a 50 mile bike ride to Shiner Texas. You end and the Spoetzl Brewing Company where Shiner beer is made. There is a full version of this ride that is 100 miles!
My ride started outside of Lockhart Texas at the 50 mile mark. I rode south with the other 50 milers and the 100 milers mixed in shortly after we got going. This cycling event was the hardest thing to date that I have ever completed. I am more a runner then a cyclist, but I do enjoy cycling for cross training purposes. The farthest I had rode before this was only 30 miles. The farthest I have ever run is 10 miles. This was harder then the two combined. Don’t get me wrong, the scenery was amazing. All green fields and little creeks, and lots of wild flowers. We started out with a rain delay of 30mins but after that it was blue skies. When I run, I usually wear earbuds and listen to music, but I don’t when I ride for safety purposes. So I had a lot of time to take in the sights and sounds (3 and a half hours to be exact). Oh and there were hills, did a mention that there were hills? Lots of them. Little at first and then just for fun big ones towards the last 10miles. Those last ten miles were the hardest ten miles. Every time I got up one hill, and thought “that must be the last one”, there would be another in the distance. There were times during those ten miles that I noticed butterflies zooming passed me! That did make me laugh but after riding 40 plus miles I really did just want the ride to be over. At about mile 45 I saw my husband’s truck in the distance parked on the side of the road. He was honking and yelling to cheer me on and that gave me the strength I needed to finish.
52.04 miles later and 2000 plus calories burned, I finished. I got a medal, a veggie burger on a flour tortilla and a beer! The veggie burger with mustard tasted amazing after all that. I was really glad that they had a vegetarian option (not 100% sure if it was vegan, when I emailed to find out, they couldn’t be 100% sure either), but I did still eat it. And I drank one of the 4 beers that I could have had too! I highly recommend Shiner’s Prickly Pear Summer Seasonal beer.
I’m super proud of myself and even though it was so hard at the end, I’m actually already thinking about doing it again next year! I have a 10k this weekend coming up and then a very much needed two months to taper off until I have to start training for my first 1/2 marathon in October.