Well, it’s been a long 35 weeks since I started blogging tips and tricks to get you safely through the Empire State Ride. I have met several of the riders and I guarantee you’ll have an amazing time this year. Here are a few last-minute tidbits and reminders to keep fresh in your mind.
1. While everyone was their own personal reasons for riding the Empire State Ride, ultimately, you are coming together as a group to raise funds to fight cancer. Remember this as you ride. Even though there are riders at different levels of fitness, be sure to encourage each other. Make new friends outside of the group whose pace you settle into and you’ll find that you may make a few lasting friendships.
2. Eat well and sleep well. You will have entertainment for some of the nights and you’ll want to sit up and chat with newfound friends on others. But, don’t forget to get a good night’s sleep. In the morning, be sure to start the day with a good meal and above all, hydrate.
3. Stretch. I talked about massage and stretching earlier this year. Staying limber will help you take on each day’s ride with more power. It will also minimize injuries. Get a group together in the evening for some gentle yoga poses and make it a daily commitment.
4. Pace yourself. The excitement of the ride will have you raring to go day one. But with a full week of riding, including a fair amount of climbing, pacing yourself is the best way to reap the rewards of each day and to avoid the sag wagon.
5. Listen to your body. Remember that positive self-talk and phrases will keep you going even when it gets hot and the hills get steep.
6. Finally, although it may seem silly, smile. Smiling makes the day seem brighter, your legs seem fresher, and the miles go by faster. Look around as you ride; after all, how often do you get to RIDE across the state? Look for those things that make you smile and feel like a small part of something wonderful.
Thank you for inspiring me. Good luck and have fun.