Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Hell of the Marianas Century Cycle

The HOM 100km bike race fell exactly 10 months to the day of my surgery in February. It's been a fast year and when I started to exercise again in April, I didn't realize how quickly I would recover. I remember back in April when my stomach muscles were so weak that I couldn't lift myself up if I was lying down flat on my back. Thankfully, all the hours with Brett at the gym, the spin classes and the occasional bike rides helped!
I was happy to finish in 4 hours 21 minutes to beat my targeted time of 4.5 hours! I also placed 3rd in my age group! Yea!
Russ has competed in the HOM each year and this year he finished in 3 hours 45 minutes, virtually tying his time over last year. The difference between 2009 and 2010 was the weather. It was slick with rain in some spots and the road construction near our home was tricky for a quarter mile or so. Plus, the sheer increase in the number of participants makes the course busier.
Russ said that when he was going up the last hill coming out of the Grotto, he heard two Koreans crying out in pain. He helped pushed this one gentlemen up the hill and later, he was rewarded with a draft back from Banzai to PIC!
The 100km race starts at PIC and goes to all the hills around Saipan. Here, Russ is climbing up towards Suicide Cliff.
It was a fantastic day and now I can say that I've biked 100km! It's always more fun to be a participant as there's lots of excitement and adventure in a long race like this.

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