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Old 05-27-10, 12:31 AM   #1
Wildwood
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Doubling weekly mileage??

I just finished reading the responses to BengeBoy's thread on endurance riding nutritional products. And it got me thinking about my own summer goal and potential problems.

I'm currently riding about 150 - 200 mi per week (mostly solo rides, no pacelines), consisting of three 30 - 40 mile rides and one ride of 50 - 60 miles. Plus 1 or 2 easy rides of 15ish miles. My longest ride this year is 80 miles. I finish all of these rides without problems - meaning no persistent muscle soreness or cramping and no hand, foot, knee, butt, back, neck issues. Avg speed while riding is 15 - 16 mph. Tempo riding on flat ground at about 17-18 mph. I'll be 59 in July.

I'm considering a solo two week bike trip in early Sept of about 800 miles, credit card style - not loaded touring. So my question is simple.
What are the chances I can double my mileage for two weeks without major issues?
I'm not sure I can squeeze in many more hours of riding. But in the few weeks prior to departing I plan to: 1. push a higher average speed and 2. attempt back to back centuries to stress the contact points.

I'll reduce the distance of the trip rather than undertake a rigorous training program if that's necessary. I really enjoy my current riding schedule. Sacrifice for goal attainment is not my thing.
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Old 05-27-10, 12:46 AM   #2
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Wildwood, it has been some years since I was touring, but for a credit card tour I suspect you are already fine.

One of the things that I found when on a tour is that you can cover a lot more miles than you think. You really have nothing else to do all day -- especially if you are credit card touring. You get up in the morning, ride, eat, ride, eat, ride, eat. The important things are to get an early start, and get 65 to 70% of your mileage done by noon. Take a long break, ride a couple of more hours, and call it quits for the day early. Take a walk after dinner so you don't get stiff lying around the motel or wherever you're staying. Plan a rest day after 4 days or so, or make sure you have a couple of *very* light days thrown in the mix.

I am not a training expert but instead of adding miles you might add some intensity -- pick some routes that are hillier than your normal routes.

Since you're in Seattle, you might trying hooking up with this club -- nice group of people; they schedule lots of training rides in the hilliest parts of King County they can find, and then do weekend rides in various hilly parts of the state -- Mt. Baker, Sunrise, Hurricane Ridge, North Cascades Highway, etc.

http://www.ride4areason.org/cycling/...ar/index.shtml

Even if you don't ride with them, you can check out the routes on their rides -- their "torture century south" and "torture century north" are pretty interesting..
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Old 05-27-10, 12:52 AM   #3
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I've done something a bit more extreme in the past, training at 300 miles per week and then doing a 5 day, 600 mile event. I did it OK, but wasn't much use for anything for a while afterwards. I'd say that attempting the back to back centuries is a good idea. If you can do that, then 400 miles per week is going to be no problem. One thing to bear in mind, though, is the recovery. Going at touring speed, 60 miles per day doesn't sound like much of a challenge; but it feels tougher after 10 consecutive days in the saddle. So I'd be inclined to plan a route that might involve a slightly higher daily mileage but allows you a couple of rest days.
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Old 05-27-10, 12:57 AM   #4
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Even if you don't ride with them, you can check out the routes on their rides -- their "torture century south" and "torture century north" are pretty interesting..
Thanks for the reply.
"Torture century" sounds like something I'll pass on.
The current thinking is to have my 20 yo son meet me at a couple of spots for break days of camping. He may ride a day or two with me.
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Old 05-27-10, 06:47 AM   #5
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I have not done a two week tour, but I do about 400 miles in seven days every year on Bicycle Ride Across Georgia. My normal weekly riding before that is 100-150 miles per week. I won't say it is completely painless, but it has never been a problem doing the extra miles. The hard part is going back to work the next week and being idle during the best riding hours.
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Old 05-27-10, 07:40 AM   #6
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"Torture century" sounds like something I'll pass on.
they're *only* metric centuries
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