Day 161 – Bennington to Leominster

A day of ups and downs – literally and figuratively.

I started off today with a 15km climb, and with tired legs and no chance of a warm up, it went about as quickly as you’d expect.

The descent down the other side was fantastic though. A wide, steep road produced the fastest speed of the whole trip (52.2mph / 83.9km/h – sorry Mum) and actually the first time I’ve got over 50. This has come as a bit of a surprise, as coming into this trip I thought the added weight of the panniers would speed things up; I have come to realise that the additional weight is completely negated by the aerodynamics.

Anyway, after a few more hills, things changed for the worse. I didn’t bonk (‘hit the wall’) but I found myself completely empty. Rather than lacking in energy I think it was more a case of a months worth of fatigue catching up with me. My legs had no answer to the road that kept heading upwards and mentally I was totally lost… I knew that that complacency I mentioned yesterday would come back to bite me in the arse!

After stopping for something to eat I felt pretty much the same and the next 40-50 kilometres or so were painfully slow.

After this, the weather turned. The rain came from absolutely nowhere and as miserable as it made me, it actually woke me up. I think the cold shocked me into action and the final 20kms or so were actually not so bad.

I have half a day left in the States… Although I don’t think that has really sunk in yet.

Distance: 97.5miles / 156.9km
Riding Time: 7:15:01
Av. Speed: 13.5mph / 21.6kph
Elevation Gain: 1933m

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5 comments

  1. Never mind your mum, I am not sure I want to hear you doing 52mph, we would like you to finish this challenge and make it back in one piece. So that’s it the land mass at the west side of the Atlantic almost over, that’s a big leg completed. I imagine physically and psychologically that is a massive relief. Let’s hope you final stretch back in Europe can be an enjoyable one, good on your body and state of mind. All that leaves is for me to say “have a nice day now”

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    1. Thank you Fraser – glad you said it about the speed. I’ve spent all morning thinking how to slow you down Tom, and I shall be bringing out some stabilisers . That’ll stop you ….
      Mum

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  2. Great work Thomas, well done. Next time you are having a bad day, console yourself that at least the locals are not throwing bags of wee in your face and hurling insults as you pass. If, however, you feel that your exploits are at least as incredible as Chris Froome’s and that you wish to be accorded the Champion’s greeting, your father’s godson Arthur has enthusiastically offered to fill the bag and will generously donate the abuse for free. He thinks it is a great idea.

    Have a great day today. Will.

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  3. Almost there! We’ll be in Boston today and tomorrow if you need anything – I know you’ll be with friends. We leave for London Sunday night. Xx

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