2012 BP MS 150 Houston > Austin: Journey Complete!

After months of anticipation, fundraising, and (sometimes) training, my 166-mile bike ride is in the books!

The BP MS 150 was a truly incredible experience. Personally, it was one of the toughest physical challenges I have ever faced. The most I’d ridden in one shot before Saturday was 50 miles. (And for some reason I thought going from 50 to 100 wouldn’t be a big jump… Oops. It was.)

ms1502 e1335218717356 2012 BP MS 150 Houston > Austin: Journey Complete!

Day 1 (Houston to La Grange)

Saturday was brutal. The sun was shining, the adrenaline was flowing, no rain in sight — but the wind was a monster. Sustained headwinds at 10-12mph with gusts to 20mph made every mile a struggle. I talked to a few of my Michelob Ultra teammates at the end of the day and we determined that if we had to PEDAL on a downhill to maintain speed, the wind was officially making it hard.

ms150 withsarah 2012 BP MS 150 Houston > Austin: Journey Complete!

(Me and my riding partner Sarah)

After camping in La Grange we set off for Day 2, destination: Austin. It would be an easier day with barely any wind, brilliant sunshine, and the finish within reach. There were a lot of tough hills, but the ride was much more fun — and shorter, only 66 miles. (Yes, now I can say “only” 66 miles, like I’m some kinda cycling pro.)

ms150 finish83miles 2012 BP MS 150 Houston > Austin: Journey Complete!

(A sign of hope at the last breakpoint before Austin!)

Once we got to downtown Austin, the street opened up and people were lining the curb cheering us to the finish. My riding partner Sarah and I raised a few cold beers to toast our achievement (surviving) at a pub around the corner from the finish line and Ivan generously loaded up the bikes and drove us (half-awake) back to Houston.

ms1501 2012 BP MS 150 Houston > Austin: Journey Complete!

(The victory shot!)

Will I give it another shot next year? I think so. And what will I do differently? More sunscreen, first of all. And after 2 flats and a tire blowout on Saturday, I’ll also tune up my bike the week before and bring supplies. (Instead of depending on one very generous ride marshal who gave me a new tire mid-ride!)

Hats off to Jeff and all the other ride marshals, everyone who rode and to the folks who put it together. A great weekend, and for a very important cause!

I still have some time to reach my goal — only $200 short as I post this — so if you want to help fight MS and support families struggling with this unpredictable disease, go to my fundraising page! THANK YOU!

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