Weekend Ride Round Up – Hotter n' Hell Edition – 8/22 – 8/24

You have been waiting for this weekend all year, training hard and sweating your butt off! It’s finally here. It’s Hotter N’ Hell week!



All Weekend:

Hotter’N Hell Hundred 2014 - Wichita Falls

August 23rd:

Team Faith Spokesmen – Sweat to end homelessness

August 20, 2014 Posted Under: News and Events   Read More

Repost => How to Hydrate Properly During the Hotter 'n Hell Texas Bicycle Ride

If you missed it last time around, check out this hydration article for Hotter N’ Hell!!

Here is a recap from a previous post for some tips on staying hydrated this weekend…

This is one of the hottest summers on record in ‘recent’ Texas history and you need to prepare well for Saturday’s Hotter ‘n Hell bicycle ride. Last year Brad our team Doctor (Okay, so he is a Doctor that happens to be a Wheelbrother) wrote a great guide on how to properly hydrate for the race. I’m republishing it this week since nothing essentially changed – well, except it being HOTTER this year and the start of this years race being at 6am vs. 7:05a.

HydrationBrad please educate us on how to properly hydrate:

There are a lot of prevailing theories on how best to hydrate for an event such as the HH100 so let’s break it down into its simplest terms:

1. It’s all about the day before:  hydrate your brains out 24 hours before the ride.  Use water or electrolyte solution.  If you are not drinking, then your not allowing the individual cells to retain the fluids that it will desperately need.

2. Avoid all caffeine for 24-48 hours prior to the ride.  Remember that caffeine is a mild diuretic (makes you urinate more) and obviously this is the opposite of what we need to be doing.

3. Take a multivitamin the day before and the day of the race.  If you cramp often, consider adding an OTC potassium tablet (8-10 meq should do) the day before and the day of your race.

4. Complex carbs the day before the ride to eat (pasta, rice, pizza).

5. Hydrate during the race.  I have observed that most riders under hydrate.  I plan on stopping at mile 25-30, 50, 70, and 90 miles.  Bring 3 bottles with you and make sure they are gone before you get to the rest stop.  The desire to drinkdecreases as your cardiac output increases so you have to remember to drink.  What’s the best solution?  There is great debate on this one but water vs electrolytes is probably a wash.  During extreme conditions (of which this will be) electrolytes show a 3-4% improvement in performance in elite athletes only (and we ain’t that except for Ron — Cat Racer extraordinaire).  I start out with 2 waters and one Gatorade and after the first stop I switch to 1 water and 2 gatorades.  Why?  Electrolyte solution doesn’t quench your thirst like water does and therefore your more likely to drink.  Also,  you’ll need the calories during a long event like this.

6. Are you urinating?  If the answer is no, then significantly increase the volume.  I want everyone screaming they have to pee at that first rest stop.

7. Pickle juice?  A trendy pick and has some merit but I wouldn’t try it for the first time on ride day.  It may upset your stomach and that is NOT where you want to be.  Also, it tends to turn off the desire to drink more.

8. Kick some ass…


Thank you Brad for clearing this up!

Tomorrow, we’ll publish a little guide with tips and tricks that work for some of the Wheelbrothers but which are NOT scientifically proven and should never be interpreted as sound medical advice.

Be also aware to not OVER-hydrate… try to find BALANCE in your approach (more to come on that topic)


In the meantime a quick video by Chris Carmichael – Lance Armstrong’s trainer on hydration for cyclists under ‘regular’ conditions:

August 20, 2014 Posted Under: Guides, Helpful Hints   Read More

Featured Cyclist – Ashley Knox

Every once in awhile, we hear a story that inspires us. A story that represents exactly what it means to be a true Wheel Brother, and an amazing cyclist. We heard Ashely’s story a few weeks ago, and were moved by her passion.  After signing up for the Cactus & Crude MS150 and training for only 2 days, she went out and dominated the race using a rental bike and running shoes! With such passion and determination, we just had to get to know this awesome athlete!

Featured Cyclist

1. How long have you been a cyclist (or other kind of athlete)?

I don’t know that I would call myself a cyclist, Tuesday before the MS150, Velocity Bike Shop in Lubbock was kind enough to loan me a fantastic bike for the ride, fit it properly and show me how to use the gears & brakes, etc. I have a very kind friend that loaned me everything else, aside from my own brooks running shoes. I did two training rides of less than 20 miles that week, and Saturday morning we drove to Midland for the Cactus & Crude with the Carney Men Team!

I was an athlete in high school, but that was years ago. In March of this year I decided to take charge of myself and change my lifestyle by beginning at boot camp in Lubbock with a great gym, Training Ground. I have made significant changes in the last 5 months; I know without doubt that the cross training I am doing and the consistency of my running is the only way I was able to participate, let alone finish the MS 150.

2. What made you sign up for the Cactus & Crude MS150?

My friend Terri was asked by the Carney Men to join the team through an interview promoting the ride and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. As friends do when they agree to ride 150 miles (craziness) with less than a week’s notice, she called me that night, before I knew it we were both researching cycling, trying to determine how to make it through this ride. Between the two of us we had no equipment and honestly no experience riding, but we were both so excited for the event and the challenge of riding that far, once we committed there was no stopping us.  We are both active in the nonprofit community in West Texas and knew no matter how the ride turned out we could raise awareness and funds for the families living with MS on the South Plains.

I began this ride for Terri and everyone with MS, but every sweaty slow pedal on Sunday I knew my new buddy Darin had my back and I was determined to make it worth his time & effort.
For Pam & John my riding buddies that got me through the HOT Saturday, for Mel who came back and rode the last 10+ miles with me on Saturday , for the Ironman rider Chris that hung with me Sunday morning, the Cactus Man that rode with me two legs Sunday afternoon, and the Carney Chicks that cheered every step of the way and all volunteers with water…. Pickle juice…. Other unmentionables …. But throughout it all I knew Darin was back there and would have a killer smile for me and a word or two of encouragement ….

3. How did you feel at the starting line? Were you confident in your abilities to complete the race?

The night before the ride I did get very nervous. It finally settled in that we were going to Midland to ride 150 miles with no training; luckily I have a great husband who knew just what to say: go out there and do your best and have FUN. The starting line held countless emotions, the excitement was palpable from our team, I had just met 60+ Carney Men & Chicks. Before I knew it the starting gun boomed and everyone was off. I ended up being separated from my friend, so I did the first 12 miles of the ride solo, but it gave me the opportunity to meet other riders. The riding community is one of the most outgoing and welcoming group of athletes I have ever encountered! I made new friends, learned that my bike was a pretty “sweet” ride according to a few of the other riders, and I enjoyed the morning which was relatively cool for July! Honestly, I tried not to set any expectations for the ride, I wanted to see how far I could make it, but did not want to injure myself. Now, I am not all level headed I did sign up for a 2-day 150 mile bike ride when I don’t own a bicycle and I tend to be somewhat competitive …. But I had a plan: ride, reevaluate at each rest stop to see how I was feeling, take it one rest stop to the next. When I finished the first day I was FLOORED and exhausted and sore, I had just completed 75 miles!

4. Did you struggle at all with yourself or with the course during this ride?

Yes, to both. My friend fractured her wrist about 30 miles into day 1, which was terrible– obviously and kind of scary for this newbie. Also, selfishly I no longer had a riding buddy. Luckily the Carney Men & Women are awesome and welcoming and I had two new riding buddies for most of the remainder of day 1.   The last few legs of the ride day 1, I’d guess 50+ miles in (my phone died, so I had no idea how far I had ridden) and I was riding alone – literally no one around, the temperature had soared, and I had all this time to think about what I was doing and how I was feeling. Bad News for the Mental Battle. I had decided that at the next rest stop I was done; truly did not believe I had any more pedaling in me. I hurt ALL OVER and let’s be honest the padded shorts after so many miles do not feel padded in the slightest, I was beat down and ready to be off the bike.

Low and behold one of the Carney Men, Mel – the man that started this insanity of Terri and I joining the team, drives by with his family shouting and cheering and when I get to the next rest stop – the FINAL rest stop of day 1- Mel is there on his bike telling me to get water and we are riding in. I was shocked, then petrified (he is FAST) and truly complimented that he believed in me finishing. So, off we went and I am so grateful that he came back and was willing to re-ride the last 12 miles and finish the day!

Day 2 was all about the hills, that is all the veteran riders were talking about Saturday night (when honestly I wasn’t even sure I was going to be capable of riding Sunday) but once again cyclists proved they are the most welcoming and outgoing group of athletes. I started day 2 with three Ironman riders, I met a staple of the Cactus & Crude- Cactus Man who rode two legs with me and kept me going as we hit the hills and then finished the ride with my SAG team, Darin.

10555235_10102476958078118_1294679053_n5. What was your biggest challenge to overcome for this race?

My biggest challenge was not getting caught up in the entirety of the ride, I just pedaled one rest stop to the next, tried not to focus on how many miles to go.

6. Finally, tell us about the moment when you crossed the finish line!

The moment I crossed the finish line is wrapped up in the last 9.5 miles of the ride, there is a hill which is referred to by everyone as Devil’s Hill,  you are coming up the final rise onto the caprock and it truly feels like you are riding straight up.  It is a BEAST of a hill.

Before THE HILL… 60+ miles into day 2 … Final Rest Stop … one of the volunteers was discussing conquering this obstacle with me and she said: you will do this. and when you think you can’t finish pedaling, you remember you are going up that hill for everyone with MS and you WILL get up that hill.

Darin cranked up the music and WE got up that HILL ! Mel told me Saturday that walking my bike was not an option, just keep pedaling. Granny pedaling the entire way…. when I came over the top of the hill and saw the ‘devil’ and the Carney Chicks it took all I had not to burst into tears! But I had to keep going…. So VERY close to the finish. If I could have taken a picture of the 70M painted on the road- BEST FEELING – the 5 miles into Post were truly some of the most exciting because I was finally acknowledging that I was going to complete this ride! I was wrong about the best feeling ever, because I didn’t know what riding into Post held…

The State Guard saw me coming and said “You’re a Carney” (heck, yes I am!!!) go straight-no turn (The Carney Men do not cross the finish line until every member of the team is together, so they wait, some of them hours, a ½ mile from the finish)  - Darin was ahead in the street holding out Carney Juice J - and at the school 60+ of my new friends in orange flooded into the street cheering me in …. and my friend Terri leading the pack – that feeling is indescribable. I was overwhelmed and am still overwhelmed at everything that moment & weekend held!
The Carney Men, Women & Chicks have changed my life forever and I couldn’t be more proud to support and be welcomed into their team, which is a family!!
I never imagined I would complete 75 miles of this ride let alone 150 miles …… But Honestly that’s not the important part, being part of this community and this fight to erase MS from our vocabulary …. this is the true win! It is all thanks to these men & women that fight this fight every year – every day – with every pedal.

7. Would you change anything about the ride?

There are lots of things I SHOULD change about my ride technically, I rode in Brooks running shoes! I hear cycling shoes make a HUGE difference, next time I’ll try that. But, I think for my first ride I learned A LOT about cycling, following everyone’s advice, and most of all myself – believe in yourself and you can accomplish the unimaginable.

8. So, what’s next for you?

I am running in my first half marathon in the next month and on the hunt for a bike! Mine was a loaner so I am on the hunt for MY bicycle, looking forward to continuing this journey and eventually completing a century ride.

9. Any advice for other cyclists?

You never know what the future holds, but by saying “Yes”, you can change your entire world. Don’t hold yourself back with the mental games, you are stronger than you think, I am SURE of it! And use butt butter….


If YOU know someone who deserves a feature on our website, send us some photos and contact info, and why you think they should be one of our featured cyclists! You never know who might nominate you! Keep being awesome out there, and cycle on!

August 14, 2014 Posted Under: News and Events   Read More

Weekend Ride Round Up – 8/15 – 8/17

Look out! We have a GREAT weekend for rides headed our way! Check out all these awesome rides to chose from this weekend! Wow!

weekwnd ride 8-15 8-17

Friday, August 15th:

Miles 4 Marce  – College Station, TX

Saturday, August 16th:

Midnight Massacre - Sanger, TX

Cove House Classic Bike Tour 2014 - Copperas Cove, TX

Sunday, August 17th:

Take on the Heat Triathlon - The Colony

Vernon Burnin’ Bike Ride - Vernon

Wow! A ride every day of the weekend! We have not had that in awhile! Pick a race, complete it, and send us your experience on the ride!

August 13, 2014 Posted Under: News and Events   Read More

Affiliate Disclosure | Calendar of Events | List of Texas Bicycle Rides | Contact Us