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  1. #1
    Senior Member magohn's Avatar
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    A Hill too Far...Tips for a Clyde trying to gain endurance.

    Set off today with the intention of besting my furthest road ride of 61.5 miles. I woke nice and early and was on the road for 6:45AM armed with lots of water and Perpetuem.

    Well the first 35 miles were fine but I had decided the time was right to stop being afraid of major hills and added a a 7% - 2.5 mile climb to my route at mile 35. Well, thats where the fun started. First of all it was hot for me (approx 68 degrees), and I was wearing a cheap rain jacket as all of my previous rides I have gotten soaked through. The cheap jacket was not good in the hot weather, I was soaked with sweat within an hour. By the time I got to the hill I realized that my first water bottle was almost empty and my second full of warming Perpetuem. I decided to conserve what water I had left and attacked the hill. The hill proceeded to hand me my a$$ back on a silver plate - I had to stop twice and actually walked a few hundred feet. I did get to the top of the hill but now had dead legs - I rolled down the other side of the hill and felt very beaten. That was a very tough hill for me.

    All of a sudden an Oasis appeared at the base of the hill in the form of a factory outlet along with its very own "Fatburger" - I rolled into Fatburger, ordered a bacon and egg sandwich with a coke and called my SAG vehicle to come get me (my wife - shes a very patient lady). Of course, by the time my ride home appeared the two cups of Coke had worked into my system and I felt pretty good! Thank goodness I had $ to buy some fluids.

    I accepted the ride home and soaked in the bath for an hour. I rode 41 miles in 3.5 hours, including the nasty hill.

    Could anyone please advise me on how to get around the following for a Clyde on a long-distance ride such as this?

    1. Perpetuem - Im close to 300lbs and the recommended serving is 2.5 per hour. On a long ride (5+ hours), that close to 13 servings - how the heck do I get all that product onto those tiny bottles form Hammer? The only way I can think of is to use one of my water bottles and means less actual water for the ride. Not to mention it gets expensive at 13.5 servings per weekend.

    2. What are those water-bottle carriers called that attach to the seat? This would give me more options.

    3. Im a big guy, can anyone recommend a very light, roomy, thin, cheap rain jacket? In the PNW you never know when its gonna rain - never mind 5 hours from now.

    4. How can I attack these hills in a more logical manner? I did get up this hill but at a price.

    5. How do I spot dehydration early - other than being thirsty?

    6. Any other general comments welcome.

    Thanks guys, you keep me going!

  2. #2
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    Magohn - sounds to me like you did a great job working with what you had - which was not enough water. I highly recommend you get one of the bottle holders on the back of your seat to give you more water storage, but you can also keep your Perpetuem in the larger water bottle, plus some in the smaller bottle. Take breaks when you need to and cycle again. I think you are a great rider and I look forward to riding with you again.

    Positively,
    Magspaws!

  3. #3
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    1) Slam a gel every 45 minutes, Hammer Gel has the same stuff and calorie count as Perpeteum but in denser form.
    2) Seat Post Water Bottle Racks. http://www.amazon.com/Profile-Design.../dp/B000CF2B0U
    3) Col'dlizard
    4) Spin an easy gear, don't get in a hurry, and you'll be getting better with time.
    5) If you wait til you are thirsty, you're already behind the curve. Sip every few minutes, whether you think you need it or not, and drink more as the temp goes up.
    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


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  4. #4
    I am the Snail~! Peter_C's Avatar
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    I have no suggestions (you are ahead of me), but for the clothing, I am completely in love with http://www.aerotechdesigns.com/.

    Have bought 1 Jersey, 2 shorts. and 1 bib-shorts, and love them all !
    Peter_C
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    It sounds like you're doing great for a big guy, that's one hell of a climb for anyone.

    I might suggest carrying some real food rather than just the energy drink. Nuts, dried fruit or even a peanut butter sandwich. Your body can digest this stuff quicker than you'd think. If you're running out of water are there any stops you can plan to get more?

    And while I don't know your body type the obvious comment is that if you're out to improve endurance the easiest way is to drop weight.

  6. #6
    Senior Member magohn's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replies guys...

    Tom - I will give the gels a shot. I have tried the odd one but never used them solely for my rides. Also, I WAS in my easiest gear

    Peter - Funnily enough. I just discovered Aero clothing and ordered a 2XL shirt - However, when it arrived it is nowhere close to fitting me. I reached out to them to see if they will exchange for a 4XL. If all goes well, I will look to them for a possible jacket.

    Sakon - Thank for the kind words - as for dropping weigh, Im working on it. Since starting to ride in February, I have dropped from 315lbs to 293lbs

    Thanks all - appreciate it.

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    A lot of cycling clothing is sized for racing and as can be pretty wacky. I'm down to 220 or so from 260 and still take an XXXL in some stuff!

    Congrats on the weight loss and keep it up. You'll feel so much better on the bike for every pound you drop.

  8. #8
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagsPaws View Post
    I think you are a great rider and I look forward to riding with you again.
    I think he's great and I've never met him. Magohn, ya done good. But better would be to have more water.

    As for fuel, I agree with Mr. Beanz that a turkey sandwich does wonders mid-ride.

    For a jacket, check out:

    http://www.bicycleclothing.com/

  9. #9
    I am the Snail~! Peter_C's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by magohn View Post
    Thanks for the replies guys...

    Tom - I will give the gels a shot. I have tried the odd one but never used them solely for my rides. Also, I WAS in my easiest gear

    Peter - Funnily enough. I just discovered Aero clothing and ordered a 2XL shirt - However, when it arrived it is nowhere close to fitting me. I reached out to them to see if they will exchange for a 4XL. If all goes well, I will look to them for a possible jacket.

    Sakon - Thank for the kind words - as for dropping weigh, Im working on it. Since starting to ride in February, I have dropped from 315lbs to 293lbs

    Thanks all - appreciate it.
    As already stated, biking sizes are weird at times - and many jerseys are designed to be skin tight. I bought a 5XL - this ONE which fits me nice and loose - at my size am almost ready to go down to a 4XL
    Peter_C
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  10. #10
    your nightmare gal chipcom's Avatar
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    1. Perpetuem - Im close to 300lbs and the recommended serving is 2.5 per hour. On a long ride (5+ hours), that close to 13 servings - how the heck do I get all that product onto those tiny bottles form Hammer? The only way I can think of is to use one of my water bottles and means less actual water for the ride. Not to mention it gets expensive at 13.5 servings per weekend.

    Gels and power bars in your jersey pockets or bags.

    Personally I don't mess with any of that crap...one bottle of pink lemonade, one bottle of water and a rice krispies treat per 50-60 miles is fine for me, unless there is a lot of climbing or it's a hammerfest. But against conventional logic, I have always conditioned myself to do more with less. YMMV, you do what is best for you.

    Get off the danged coke...if you need a sugar fix, get it from sugar in things like iced tea, lemonade etc., not stuff with the HFC crap in it. (

    2. What are those water-bottle carriers called that attach to the seat? This would give me more options.


    Unless you are really out in the sticks, there should be plenty of places that you can stop for water, rather than trying to carry it all. Use the 24oz insulated bottles, stick a couple in your jersey pocket if you think 2 won't get you far enough for a refill. Them saddle mounted holders make you look like one of them tri-guys.

    3. Im a big guy, can anyone recommend a very light, roomy, thin, cheap rain jacket? In the PNW you never know when its gonna rain - never mind 5 hours from now.

    Try a rain cape - much better ventilation at the expense of more wind resistance. Otherwise, if you insist on a jacket, make sure it has plenty of ventilation options...front zip, pit zips, rear vent, adjustable cuffs, maybe even removable sleeves. Showers Pass or J&G stuff are always a good choice.

    Just cuz it might rain doesn't mean you need to wear the jacket all the time...stow the jacket in a jersey pocket, handlebar bag, rack trunk, or even just secured to your seat post or top tube. Hell, if you are working hard anyway, screw the jacket and enjoy the rain.

    4. How can I attack these hills in a more logical manner? I did get up this hill but at a price.

    spin easy with a lower gear, switch off between standing and sitting, concentrate on not letting your heart rate go into the red zone and climb, climb, climb.

    5. How do I spot dehydration early - other than being thirsty?

    if you spot hydration, it's already too late. drink early, drink often, eat early, eat often.
    You gotta be in tune with your own body, at what points I eat and drink are going to be different for you. Pay attention to your body, learn something from each ride.

    6. Any other general comments welcome.

    Spend more time having fun riding, less time worrying about stuff. If you bonk, you bonk, you get a ride home and learn from it, but for the most part don't try to do too much too fast. Expand on your bests in baby steps. Once you learn your limitations and what works for you, bonking will be a rare occurrence.
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  11. #11
    Real Human Being wild animals's Avatar
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    I have a Showers Pass Club jacket that is really nice. The newer model might be slightly different but I'm sure it's as good or better. It's on closeout now, I guess! $50. http://www.showerspass.com/catalog/c...ns-club-jacket They go up to XXL in men's, for men w/chests 50-53" around. The wrists are somewhat rigid across the top so they'll scoop up air if you leave them open. Unfortunately, I'm a girl in a men's jacket, so the arms on mine are too long and have almost killed me twice when they caught on my barcons.
    Go until you stop, then take a break.

  12. #12
    Real Human Being wild animals's Avatar
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    PS: I have a rack trunk, so I just toss anything extra into that when I need it. Like I could fit probably 4 water bottles in there, plus the two on my bike's frame. Plus granola bars! I'm sure it slows me down, but I bet I'd be way faster if I ever took it off. You could call it a training aid.
    Go until you stop, then take a break.

  13. #13
    Senior Member magohn's Avatar
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    Thanks again for all the suggestions

    Chipcom - Just a few side notes.

    "Get off the danged coke" - I haven't had a coke in months. I did today because I read a thread (cant remember where) where the poster downed a coke and the instant rush brought him back from a bonk - it actually worked for me too!

    As for having fun - I LOVE to ride my bike and I'm amazed when I get back from 50 miles at the distance Ive been and the cool countryside Ive witnessed. Today, was just a different ride for me (major hill) that if successful, opens up a whole other side of the county to explore on my trusty steed....

    Anyways, Im off to go check out some of those jackets - thanks!

  14. #14
    Clyde - Grinder Kamala's Avatar
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    Electrolytes FTW!!! Perpeteum and Hammer Gel are both low on the necessary electrolytes, especially if you're sweating yourself up. You need to supplement those with endurolytes or drink a weak HEED mix instead of water. My preference is for water plus perpeteum plus endurolytes. I also prefer Perpeteum to gel on longer rides (3 hours plus) because my body seems to respond better to being constantly fueled rather than getting a pile of calories in one shot. You'll need to figure out what works best for you.

    Carrying enough water can also mean planning your route to include gas stations and other places you can pick up more water. Frequently, I find they don't care if I wheeze the juice by grabbing water from the soda machines or a tap if I buy a snack. +1000 on Tom's point re dehydration. We're big boys and we need to keep the water coming, especially now that the warm weather sweat season is here.

    I had your exact heating problem on the Seven Hills metric last weekend. 13 miles in I'm sweating like I'm in a swedish sauna inside my rain jacket while it's raining out. My solution: I'd rather be soaked with rain than sweat. Starting at 60-70 degrees out, that seems to be a good enough solution.

    You're doing the right thing with big hills. Do the best you can and your body will keep adjusting. There's no secret to climbing, you just need to do it to get better at it. Learning to stand and climb will make a huge difference. I'm only now getting light enough to feel comfortable being off the seat and got a great tutorial in climbing last week. My biking Obi Wan tells me that once I really learn to climb standing, I'll be able to climb anything. You get to use a different muscle group while you're standing so it gives you a rest moving forward and you'll often feel like you have more power when you sit back down. When traffic and road circumstances allow, creating your own switchbacks by zig-zagging also helps a lot.

    Keep on rocking the rides!

  15. #15
    Senior Member mtalinm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sakonnetclip View Post

    And while I don't know your body type the obvious comment is that if you're out to improve endurance the easiest way is to drop weight.
    well duh, this is the CLYDE forum

    (sorry, I just get incensed at all my zero-body-fat, leg-shaving cyclist buddies who keep telling me 'well Matt if you want to scale those hills you should drop some pounds!" ... like it never occurred to me)
    Last edited by mtalinm; 06-05-10 at 07:44 PM.
    Trek Domane 4.5 (commute/distance), Specialized Roubaix (climber), Xootr Swift (winter/travel), Trek Soho (around town)

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    I find bananas to be really helpful on a ride. I just got home from a 70-mile ride during which I drank three bottles of water and ate two bananas. The day before yesterday I did 66 miles on three bottles of water, an oatmeal cookie, and a chocolate chip cookie. I think the bananas worked better.

  17. #17
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by magohn View Post
    Could anyone please advise me on how to get around the following for a Clyde on a long-distance ride such as this?
    Most of what I'm going to say is similar to Chip's advice.

    1. Perpetuem - Im close to 300lbs and the recommended serving is 2.5 per hour. On a long ride (5+ hours), that close to 13 servings - how the heck do I get all that product onto those tiny bottles form Hammer? The only way I can think of is to use one of my water bottles and means less actual water for the ride. Not to mention it gets expensive at 13.5 servings per weekend.
    Eat real food. When I started getting into long distance, I tried doing a double century on nothing but gels and Clif bars. Blargh! After 12 hours I would rather have eaten my own shoes. Now, I bring real food.
    The key is to get 250 - 300 calories in yourself per hour, in a form that you can stomach while you're riding. My personal favourite is a salami and cheese sandwich on whole wheat pita, cut into a few 2-bite portions I can grab from my handlebar bag on the fly. I try and build a sandwich where each portion is around 150 calories.
    The remainder I round out with a 50/50 mix of Accelerade and IsoPure Zero Carb. This gives me a kick-ass balance of carb/fat/protein/salt, and I never seem to get sick of them.

    2. What are those water-bottle carriers called that attach to the seat? This would give me more options.
    I wouldn't bother. Mix one bottle of whatever your favourite powder stuff is, and the other one of just plain water. Buy a couple bottles of water along the way when you're running low. Or you can fill up at a water fountain in a public park or (I've done this in a pinch) at a library. If you pull into a fire station driveway for a break, you'll usually get one or two guys coming out to ask if you're OK, and you can mooch a refill off 'em. (I've had to do this, too.)
    Save the space behind your seat for a seat wedge bag or a larger saddlebag you can carry stuff (like rain gear) in.

    3. Im a big guy, can anyone recommend a very light, roomy, thin, cheap rain jacket? In the PNW you never know when its gonna rain - never mind 5 hours from now.
    Get one of those cheap-o translucent rain jackets from Performance. I've seen a lot of people around here wearing them, and Performance sizing runs big enough for us big guys.

    4. How can I attack these hills in a more logical manner? I did get up this hill but at a price.
    Not saying this to be rude, just a reality check. 41 miles in 3.5 hours is less than a 12mph average. You're not attacking anything, and you shouldn't be trying to. Especially if you're looking to increase your endurance and up your distance, don't attack hills. Gear down and spin your way up them. Conserving your energy and learning to meter it out over the duration of a long course is one of the key elements of long distance riding. That was the first real hurdle I had to get over, too. It took me 3 attempts at 200k before I learned how to pace myself and not burn out between 100 - 110 miles. Slow and steady is the way to go.

    5. How do I spot dehydration early - other than being thirsty?
    A modification of the Merckx training motto: "Drink lots."
    If you get thirsty, it's too late. And if you're currently knocking back Perpetuem as your sole source of liquid, you're shortchanging yourself. One bottle of mixed stuff, and one bottle of water; alternate sips, and drink on a schedule. Every 5 minutes, every 2 miles, whatever works for you to remember to keep drinking. When it's really hot, I can go through a large water bottle every 45 minutes.
    If you're drinking a lot, remember to push some electrolytes on a regular basis. Endurolytes, NUUN, etc.

    Thanks guys, you keep me going!
    Keep on going, dude! Learn from the mistakes you make, and you'll start riding farther. With farther, the faster will happen all on its own.
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
    - Mandi M.

  18. #18
    I am the Snail~! Peter_C's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wild animals View Post
    Unfortunately, I'm a girl in a men's jacket, so the arms on mine are too long and have almost killed me twice when they caught on my barcons.
    Could we please have a photo the next time that happens?
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  19. #19
    I am the Snail~! Peter_C's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtalinm View Post
    well duh, this is the CLYDE forum

    (sorry, I just get incensed at all my zero-body-fat, leg-shaving cyclist buddies who keep telling me 'well Matt if you want to scale those hills you should drop some pounds!" ... like it never occurred to me)
    +12
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  20. #20
    I am the Snail~! Peter_C's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wild animals View Post
    PS: I have a rack trunk, so I just toss anything extra into that when I need it. Like I could fit probably 4 water bottles in there, plus the two on my bike's frame. Plus granola bars! I'm sure it slows me down, but I bet I'd be way faster if I ever took it off. You could call it a training aid.
    Personally, I'm a kitchen sink kinda guy! Can't go round the block without both my under-seat bag (flat fixing stuff), and my trunk bag! AND, don't forget the hidden $20 bill - just-in-case...
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  21. #21
    Clyde - Grinder Kamala's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter_C View Post
    Personally, I'm a kitchen sink kinda guy! Can't go round the block without both my under-seat bag (flat fixing stuff), and my trunk bag! AND, don't forget the hidden $20 bill - just-in-case...
    +1. Guilty as charged.

  22. #22
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtalinm View Post
    well duh, this is the CLYDE forum

    (sorry, I just get incensed at all my zero-body-fat, leg-shaving cyclist buddies who keep telling me 'well Matt if you want to scale those hills you should drop some pounds!" ... like it never occurred to me)
    Send your zero body fat buddies up to the PNW and I'll introduce them to the Clyde crew from the Seattle Randonneurs. Put 'em up against the club president who just did 2x 600k events in a week. One of them traverses 4 mountain passes.
    Then send 'em for a few rides with Mr. Beanz, and pass anyone left standing off to Homeyba.

    There's some of us big guys who can climb.

    The current RUSA yearly distance record holder is a Clyde, and he's trying to break his own record this year.
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
    - Mandi M.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Crazy88s's Avatar
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    Congrats on the ride! Not a lot of people can do that at all. In fact I'm leading a group of friends on a ride today and they are nervous over riding 3 miles. I might push them to 10.

    I too set out to do 61 miles on Saturday but my wife convinced me to do 40 instead as I haven't done a 40+ mile ride in a while. I'm glad I listened to her. My legs were tired from the beginning (ran 2 miles and did spin class on Friday). The route I took was very hilly (especially around the 30 to 40 mile mark). I brought two water bottles and that was it. I'll probably invest in the seat post bottles too. I didn't bring any food but I did have a foot long veggie sub from subway afterward.

    Here are the stats from the ride: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/35755894

  24. #24
    Senior Member magohn's Avatar
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    Again, thanks for all the info / reinforcement.

    Crazy 88's - Im currently using software on my phone to plot my route via GPS. However, its very unreliable. For example, it doesn't calc rests, kills the phone in 2 hours and also gives me downhill speeds of 2000mph+ !!!

    Are the garmins fairly reliable as far as data is concerned? Id probably need the 705 as after I got on the other side of the hill yesterday I realized I wasnt too sure how to get home...

  25. #25
    VoodooChile zoste's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by magohn View Post
    Again, thanks for all the info / reinforcement.

    Crazy 88's - Im currently using software on my phone to plot my route via GPS. However, its very unreliable. For example, it doesn't calc rests, kills the phone in 2 hours and also gives me downhill speeds of 2000mph+ !!!

    Are the garmins fairly reliable as far as data is concerned? Id probably need the 705 as after I got on the other side of the hill yesterday I realized I wasnt too sure how to get home...
    Yes...the operative words being "fairly reliable". I've never seen speed variations like you are talking about, but when the battery on the gsc-10 sensor starts to go the speed and distance do start to vary. The battery on my sensor lasts about a year. With a full charge the 705 will run for something like 12 -13 hours. I've ridden centuries and never ran the battery all the way down.
    Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand

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