You should note that my diploma from college states "BS Math and Computer Science" on it. I took coursework in abstract algebra, formal languages, linear algebra, numerical methods, differential equations, and other fairly unpleasant forms of math.
Now, I've been wanting to do these rides called randonees for a while now. The idea is that you follow a defined course through checkpoints and get a stamp on your card at each checkpoint. It's not a race but a test of endurance and self-sufficiency and so riders will ride it at a fast but comfortable pace.
For some reason, I had convinced myself that the shortest brevet distance, 200 km (124.2 mi) in 13.5 hours, meant that I would be obliged to bike at 12.5 mph. So I'd been bummed out because I was doing challenging rides over difficult terrain and was only reaching about 12.3 mph average pace. And this was a problem. Training? More riding? Faster hill climbs? Different tires or a higher pressure? Maybe it was time to get a new road bike or something, since I'm still riding on a mountain bike. Or maybe I could rely on drafting other riders or that there might be fewer stop signs.
I was riding to work and was thinking that I really need to check the math. As I thought about it, I realized that this 12.5 mph figure I was bandying around in my head wasn't at all correct. It's actually 9.2 mph average pace.
As soon as I realized that, I realized that I could totally do this. So I'm signed up for the Point Reyes brevet with the San Francisco Randonneurs next weekend.
My plan goes something like this: