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The Long Route and (Finally!) a Day Off

Thursday; The Medium/Long Route Day

Thursday. Three of us set off at around 8am to cycle over campolongo to Arabba. I think I was a bit quicker than yesterday and this is only relevant in terms of trying to work out whether I should wave goodbye to the prospect of cycling the long route. To do the long route, cyclists must reach the cut off at Cernadoi by 11.45 when the road closes and you are directed on to the medium route. We had works out that we had around 1 hour possibly 1 hour 10 minutes to reach the cut off from our apartment. I timed 1hour 2 minutes. Close.  

After the cut off junction we went on along the long route having met two others at the cut off. They had driven there. 
The hardest climb, the Giau comes next. Tough. Very tough. I found it hard but kept going. I didn't stop. I was grinding my way to the top. It is a 9.9km climb and averages 9.3% gradient. I needed more gears really or longer legs. Or both. A few cyclists came past me. I couldn't speak to them. I grunted. I was pouring with sweat. It wasn't a hot day. Rain and storms were forecast again. We regrouped at the top and went into the cafe. Lovely place. Coffee and cake. And an unexpectedly long stop whilst a storm passed through. As we were getting ready to leave the wind was freezing cold. I was in shorts. There isn't much to me in terms of weight and I suffer from the cold. My body is inefficient at retaining heat. I was ready to ask for a lift home. I decided I needed to get on with it. 
A very wet and freezing cold descent. My teeth were chattering. My hands and fingers were stiffening up. I turned my legs to get some blood in my feet. 
From the bottom we were on to the Falzarego climb when it rained again, and then the sun came out and it was blistering hot. My cold vulnerability past.
Then on to the Valparola climb before a long descent to La Villa. The Falzarego and the Valparola combine to 11.5km and an average 5.8km. This is where the event starts but it finishes in Corvara where we are staying. So we then had 5km back. With the option of the steepest of the climbs the Mur dl Giat at 19%. We didn't take the option. We stopped for photos and rolled home. A good day's work. And a day off tomorrow. 
Our last two in the group arrived today. We are complete at 9. 
With a pizza in the evening and an early night. 

Friday; A Well Earned Day Off

I called home. And had a good catch up.

We then walked to la Villa along a gorgeous path by the river. This was TeamGlow on a day off picnic. We had a coffee and caught the free shuttle bus to the Maratona village. There were plenty of exhibitors and then suddenly the heavens opened. Wet. Wet. Wet. We looked round the stalls and the Maratona shop and then caught the bus back.  

I ate. And ate. And hydrated. And then went to bed. 

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