Kelowna to OK Falls

Friday morning I was off down the road atypically early at 7:15. A coffee stop and a pastry in Peachland charged me up to take advantage of my first tailwind of the trip and I really let it fly for the final 40 kms of my trailer-towing tour into Penticton. I found myself running a full bore 25 mph along the shore of lake Okanagan at around 10 am. What a change from the pattern of the last 6 days usually being pleased any time my speed peaked above 25 kph! I locked up the bike and trailer, explored the Ironman expo and had my body fat percentage tested at the Tanita booth. I weighed in at an entire percentage point below where I was only 7 days prior when departing Edmonton 1200 kms ago. Maybe I should write a weight loss book, cut your body fat, eat as much as you can, and ride your bike all day every day. People probably won’t go for it but it works even for the already lean!

After a meeting up with Stefan and Glenn I ditched the trailer into the trunk of the Subaru, content to have towed it to Penticton and not feeling the least bit of desire to ‘finish the ride’ so to say with the extra weight, what’s the point? With what suddenly seemed like a very springy bike I rolled out of Penticton and set off down the beginning of the IM bike course. I rode the first 25 kms of it and scoped out the entire marathon run course as well before calling it a day, dismounting the bike and sitting on my butt in OK Falls for the rest of the afternoon. Our accommodation is a stone throw from the run-turnaround and pretty good, most importantly there’s plenty of TV channels and internet access to keep the athletes entertained and off their feet. Both of them are looking like they’re ready to go on Sunday although Glenn’s road rash isn’t as healed as he’d like it to be by this point. Likely he’ll loose the scab on his arm during the swim on Sunday when it gets soaked, so hopefully it’s not too uncomfortable on the aerobar-pad. It’s not going to slow him down, just make it less pleasant.

I’m riding the Ironman course tomorrow to log a mental image of the entire bike route for a long winter of motivation. I’ll set off early on Saturday to get the ride done under similar ‘morning’ conditions to a potential race day. Hopefully it goes well… then we’ll likely try for an early night because race morning comes super early!

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Road to Ironman – Day 1

Today kicks off Epic-Adventure-2009 part three. [Part 1 link] [Part 2 link]. My third and (likely) final bike ride through the Rockies for 2009 is going to be the longest and potentially most exciting yet. It’s also likely to be the slowest, but that is with reason, I’m towing a trailer with camping gear. The planned route will cover more than 1100 kilometers in the span of 7 days and take me from Edmonton to Penticton. Penticton is the destination not because the beaches will be swarming with beautiful women or because the local wine is the best in the country, but because it’s the home of Ironman Canada. I have three friends racing there this year and want to go and cheer them on, but I also intend on signing up to compete in the Superbowl of Canadian Triathlon in 2010. Making the trek out to Penticton is a requisite step in preparation for that, signing up can only be done on site.

Saturday’s route takes me south out of Edmonton along familiar roads for the first 50 kilometers to Calmar. I’ll be sure to stop in at the Bakery for some walnut donuts and then I’ll continue on towards Drayton Valley before turning south on Highway 22 towards Rocky Mtn House. The ride will cover in excess of 220 kilometers and I have plans to potentially camp at Twin Lakes near Rocky Mountain House. The second half of the route includes some serious hills, nothing long but rolling terrain with a trailer can be an emotional rollercoaster in addition to the physical one. Day two will take me through the foothills and into the Rockies, I’ll hopefully update my webpage periodically this week with stories from the road. I also plan to actually take more than two photos, I’ve carried my camera many days this summer but used it on surprisingly few of them.

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