This century is organized very well and has great "food zones" every 12-15 miles. The course is beautiful and winds through scenic country roads. There are a few hills along the course but overall it is a flat and easy ride. The weather on Saturday was a little bit warm for May. Temperatures were in the upper 80's and we were riding into a headwind the last 45 miles or so but I really had so much fun riding with my hubby.We finally had a chance to catch up and chat with each other about all of the things we haven't had time to discuss recently. I absolutely love being married to a man who pursues athletic activities with me. It is such a bonding experience to help each other during the tough sections of the ride and to be able to sit back and admire the energy and effort that is being put into a long ride like this. I am a very lucky woman!
On the ride today, I was able to try out two new products that I recently received. The great people over at Salt Stick sent me a brand new Salt Stick of my very own to try out on the ride.
According to the website, Salt Stick is "a water-resistant holder-dispenser for capsules designed to fit INSIDE mountain bike or triathlon handlebars, or mounted on running belts, bicycle frames and so much more."
I attached the Salt Stick to the stem of my bike and loaded it up with some E-caps that I had laying around the house. I was able to fit six of my E-caps into the dispenser and secured the Salt Stick right next to my Bento Box. I wanted to try the Salt Stick out before I committed to securing it inside of my aero bars and I decided that the frame was my best bet. Well, I have to say, after trying the Salt Stick out I am planning on installing it permanently in my aero bars because I was very impressed with it! It was extremely easy to access my E-caps while I was riding along and it was nice to know that they were safe inside of the tube. I have had so many electrolyte capsules ruined from sweat or rain or from just being crushed in my jersey. I really love this new accessory and I am looking forward to using it both in training and on race day. You should definitely check out the website (http://www.saltstick.com/) for more information because these Salt Stick people are pretty clever. Plus, there is a great Salt Stick installation video featuring Chis McCormack that is fun to watch as well...if Macca likes it then it must be cool, right?!?!
The other new product that I was able to test out today was Ultima which is an electrolyte replacement drink. The Ultima website describes it like this, " Ultima Replenisher is a natural sports drink with zero sugar. It contains a full complement of electrolytes, not just a ton of sodium. Ultima also contains complex carbs for energy, water-soluble vitamins and vitamin enhancers for day-to-day health maintenance, and antioxidants to protect body systems from free radicals (toxins). Ultima uses no artificial colors, flavors or sweeteners." When I found out that I was going to be able to sample Ultima I was VERY excited because I am super picky about sports drinks and I am always on the lookout for a good one. I have been making my own homemade sports drink for a couple of years now simply because I cannot find one that I really like. Well, after my ride on Saturday I am definitely going to be replacing some of my homemade sports drink with Ultima because I really enjoyed the taste and the benefits of this drink. I was able to stay well hydrated throughout my ride in very warm conditions and the packets were portable and easy to use. I was sent three different flavors of Ultima, (lemonade, wild raspberry and orange) and I was able to test them all throughout the day. The Wild Raspberry was definitely my favorite because it had such a refreshing and not too sweet taste. I shared a few of my Ultima packets with some friends and my hubby and they were all impressed as well. There is only one issue that I had with the Ultima Replinisher and that is the low amount of calories. Now, honestly, most people would be happy to have a low calorie electrolyte replacer but I have a hard time keeping solid food down during a race and I depend on my sports drink to provide a good portion of my calories. I am thinking about combining the Ultima mix with some fruit juice and seeing how that works. I am definitely a fan of Ultima though and I am wearing my very cool t-shirt with pride. Go check it out for yourself at http://www.ultimareplenisher.com/