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  1. #1
    Legs; OK! Lungs; not! bobthib's Avatar
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    Horrible Hundred practice run - FAIL! 8^(

    14 members of our bike club drive 3 hrs to the center of the state to ride a practice run of the upcoming "Horrible Hundred." The weather was fabulous, clear, not much wind, low humidity, mid 80's. Our host took us on an condensed tour of the best (or worst?) climbs of the upcoming "Horrible Hundred."

    The weather was great, mid 80's low humidity, mild breeze, and clear and sunny. I hung with the big dogs for as long as I could but after tortuous climb up the 8% grade of "Sugarloaf Mountain," it was only a matter of time before I got "dropped," cycling parlance for getting left in the dust. Also, I must confess, I chose to walk up the last 2/3rd of Sugarloaf. It was just a little too much for this old man. FAIL!
    I need to give a big shout out to Jerry for organizing this event and for driving up and back 8^0 and to Felix for hanging with me when I got dropped. Also, Kudos to Kroupa for allowing us to use his place to shower up before lunch and the 3 hr trek home.

    It was a great ride and a great experience. It give me food for thought for the upcoming "Horrible Hundred." On thing I know I need to do is put on the 12-27 cassette for this ride!

    http://ridewithgps.com/trips/114988
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Allegheny Jet's Avatar
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    Just shake it off. You were on a hilly practice ride and you usually ride on flatlands. Now you know what to expect for the next time. A 200' climb over a half mile is significant and maybe you took it too hard at the bottom then panicked when you started to really burn. A 27 in the back should help on the really hard parts. If you have time before your event you can do some low cadence intervals to get used to putting power into the whole pedal stroke. Put the bike in the biggest gear and just chug along at the 55-65 rpm for 8-10 minutes for 2 or 3 reps.
    oldschool areodynamic brick

  3. #3
    Elite Rider Hermes's Avatar
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    I agree with A'jet and while you are shaking it off, shake off some of the aerobelly.

    IMO, you need a lot more threshold work of 10 minutes or longer as well as z3 work of 20 minutes and longer. My wife and I were in southern California last week and did a really flat coastal ride along the ocean. When my wife was in the lead at 20 mph, I was drafting at 150 watts which is barely z2 for me. I have to be at 22+ mph to begin to get a solid z3 workout and 24 mph + for minimum z4.

    So even if you are on very flat terrain, just go out solo and crank it up to 22 mph or higher for 10 minutes plus and you will get some solid z3 /z4 efforts. Then as A'jet suggested add in some slower cadence bigger gear work but keep the speed above 22 mph.
    "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." Einstein

  4. #4
    Senior Member MinnMan's Avatar
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    Hermes, those speeds have to scale with fitness- most of us aren't close to your level. Though I don't usually try, I'd guess that I could maintain 22 MPH for some time (though maybe not 10 minutes) without drafting on a flat course, but there's no way I'd be in Z3 doing it.

  5. #5
    Senior Member skilsaw's Avatar
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    I cycle for pleasure.... Vary rarely do I pass another cyclist.
    Bobthib, you and Felix can cycle with me anytime.
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  6. #6
    Legs; OK! Lungs; not! bobthib's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allegheny Jet
    Just shake it off. You were on a hilly practice ride and you usually ride on flatlands. Now you know what to expect for the next time. A 200' climb over a half mile is significant and maybe you took it too hard at the bottom then panicked when you started to really burn. A 27 in the back should help on the really hard parts. If you have time before your event you can do some low cadence intervals to get used to putting power into the whole pedal stroke. Put the bike in the biggest gear and just chug along at the 55-65 rpm for 8-10 minutes for 2 or 3 reps.
    Quote Originally Posted by Hermes View Post
    I agree with A'jet and while you are shaking it off, shake off some of the aerobelly.

    IMO, you need a lot more threshold work of 10 minutes or longer as well as z3 work of 20 minutes and longer. My wife and I were in southern California last week and did a really flat coastal ride along the ocean. When my wife was in the lead at 20 mph, I was drafting at 150 watts which is barely z2 for me. I have to be at 22+ mph to begin to get a solid z3 workout and 24 mph + for minimum z4.

    So even if you are on very flat terrain, just go out solo and crank it up to 22 mph or higher for 10 minutes plus and you will get some solid z3 /z4 efforts. Then as A'jet suggested add in some slower cadence bigger gear work but keep the speed above 22 mph.
    This is why I frequent BF for the wisdom of the experts.

    When I started biking last year, I was always in the big ring, chugging along at 60-65 rpm. I think that is typical for a noob, but I wanted to get up closer to 85 - 90. So for the last year I've been trying to stay in the little ring and keep my cadence up, and to work on spinning, not mashing. It's pretty easy to do here in the flatlands.

    Now I must move on. It's funny how life seems to go (pedal?) in circles. I'll be taking the sage advice of AJ and Hermes and stay in the big ring longer, but now concentrating on pedaling in circles. That will start tomorrow morning with the crack o'dawn ride. If I do a recover ride today, I'll be spinning.

    Regarding the Aerobelly, that's easier said than done. None the less, my body mass ratio (weight/height) is 30 and it should be 27. I also have this issue of sudden onset essential hypertension, discussed in earlier posts. I'm on a low sodium diet, and limiting myself to one 12 oz cup of coffee a day. I've fortified my supplement regiment with a high potency garlic tab and some CoQ10 and I'll be adding Quercetin as well. I've also eliminated Splenda from my diet. I want to try controlling this naturally. I'm not a big fan of pharma if natrural methods will work.

    Well, its off for the recover ride. Thanks one and all.
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  7. #7
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobthib View Post
    It was a great ride and a great experience. It give me food for thought for the upcoming "Horrible Hundred." On thing I know I need to do is put on the 12-27 cassette for this ride!
    That does not sound like a fail to me. More like a good recon trip. Lower gearing and some hill work seems to be the prescription. Good luck finding a hill.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  8. #8
    Pat
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    Sounds like you had a good time. Also, you have time to get stronger. Another thing is on the day of your attempt, don't try to force a pace.

    Also Sugarloaf can be a bit tricky to climb. It has a short steep section right off of about 14%. The trick is to get up that without redlining it too much so you have enough left to make it up the long section of 7%. Having a lower gear like you are getting can't hurt.

  9. #9
    Legs; OK! Lungs; not! bobthib's Avatar
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    Thanks for the feedback and encouragement, one and all. As it is I may not be doing the "loaf" during the actual event. I'm considering being a group leader for our B group, doing the 70 mi route, and "the loaf" is not on that route. None the less, some grinding is in order as per AJ's post.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member jr59's Avatar
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    After growing up in Fl, I can tell you for sure, that ride has SHOCKED many flatlander.

    Just keep trying it if you can. The more you ride hills the easier they become.

    Some will say you can use a trainer, maybe you can, it's never worked for me.
    Just ride as big of hills as you can find.

    Also it's easy to burn out spinning up a "large" hill. Unlike going over a overpass or bridge.

    Trust me when I tell you that many have failed on that ride.

  11. #11
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Have to agree with jr59 on a lot but I do not know the ride or the hill. Hills never get easier- they just take less time to climb. That is once you have learnt not to rush them and pace yourself to the top. As you get fitter and more used to them- As I say- They don't get easier- they just take less time.

    But if finding hills are your problem to train on- Go out into a strong headwind- Has almost the same effect but when you have have enough you can turn round and get an easy ride home. But nothing beats hill training than riding hills.


    And No failure- Just a training ride for next time.
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  12. #12
    Legs; OK! Lungs; not! bobthib's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jr59 View Post
    After growing up in Fl, I can tell you for sure, that ride has SHOCKED many flatlander.

    Just keep trying it if you can. The more you ride hills the easier they become.

    Some will say you can use a trainer, maybe you can, it's never worked for me.
    Just ride as big of hills as you can find.

    Also it's easy to burn out spinning up a "large" hill. Unlike going over a overpass or bridge.

    Trust me when I tell you that many have failed on that ride.
    I'm sure there is truth to that, but it's tough to find any hills round these parts. 17th st causeway in Ft. Lauderdale is about the biggest that I know of, and I regularly sprint it.

    http://ridewithgps.com/trips/97710

    That little pimple at mile 13 is the causeway bridge. It's about a 60' climb over 1/2 mile, just over 2% grade. Not much, but the best e got within a few hundred miles. We're going to organize a ride some weekend morning and just go back and forth as many times as we can.
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  13. #13
    Senior Member jr59's Avatar
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    Sorry; I NEVER meant to say hills get easy. They don't!

    The more you ride them, the less they seem, and you get up them easier as well as quicker.

    Maybe it just seems to be easier. After a while the big hills don't seem so big, untill you find a bigger one.
    If you can find a hill that you have trouble getting up, go make it part of every ride you do. In 6 months or so,
    you will say that is not a hill. Is that easier? maybe not. I would guess it depends on how you look at it.

    STRONG headwinds work, not as good as the hills, but better than no hill.

  14. #14
    Legs; OK! Lungs; not! bobthib's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stapfam View Post
    Have to agree with jr59 on a lot but I do not know the ride or the hill. Hills never get easier- they just take less time to climb. That is once you have learnt not to rush them and pace yourself to the top. As you get fitter and more used to them- As I say- They don't get easier- they just take less time.

    But if finding hills are your problem to train on- Go out into a strong headwind- Has almost the same effect but when you have have enough you can turn round and get an easy ride home. But nothing beats hill training than riding hills.


    And No failure- Just a training ride for next time.
    While we are getting into the windy season, it is not something I can control (of course.) I'll just have to do the best I can in the interim.

    The FAIL alludes to the fact that I had to walk up the "loaf." The ride was a lot of fun, and I would do it again. I just think I will probably skip the "loaf" in the upcoming event. I don't think I'll be able to get all the way up, and with some portion of the expected 3,000 rider trying to also get up, and the occasional car, well, I just don't need to be there.
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  15. #15
    Pedals, Paddles and Poles Daspydyr's Avatar
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    I did about the same as you did last Saturday. There is a Century next Saturday that I am signed up for. I decided to try the climb from Hoover Dam (AZ/NV border) to Boulder City, NV. Its a 1200 foot climb in 4 miles. I don't know what the translates to in percentages, but I know I walked a few stretches. That was as good a booty whipping as I've had in a while. 3800' feet of climbing in 55 miles, whew!
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  16. #16
    Senior Member tizeye's Avatar
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    Nice just to get out there and do it. Something different from normal flatland.


    Doesn't look like much from the start.


    Looking back from the top


    Nearby Buckhill Rd - the other challenge


    "Gentle" rollers - not exactly flat Florida

  17. #17
    Uber Goober StephenH's Avatar
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    My personal code of cycling ethics says men shouldn't walk up hills. But, it IS okay to ride up at 2 mph and stop 8 times to rest on the way.

    Anyway, part of the secret is in not killing yourself before you get to the hill. Part of the secret is having gears low enough that you can pedal at whatever speed you need to, to keep moving. Don't be afraid to go try it again. And like in flying planes, any landing you walk away from is a good one, so no failure there.
    "be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."

  18. #18
    Legs; OK! Lungs; not! bobthib's Avatar
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    tizeye, thanks for the great pix. That's it alright. Certainly not flat fla. But then again, it's not upstate NY where I did several nice rides this past summer with much longer climbs.


    Albany County Highlands

    Mid Hudson River Valley Tour

    To the Pinnacle

    Mid Hudson River Valley Tour

    On that mid Hudson river valley climb there was a horrible grade at one point. I had to stop mid climb.


    Daspydyr: Your climb was 1200' over 4 mi which is 1200/(4 x 5280) X100% = 5.7% grade. That's just a about 10% more that the Mt. Haleakela ride in Maui. It's also about 31 miles short too.
    Last edited by bobthib; 10-04-10 at 08:46 PM.
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  19. #19
    Senior Member BlazingPedals's Avatar
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    I've thunk about your quandary for a day or two, and now I see that a few others were thinking faster. I'll add my $0.02 anyway.

    Remember, it was a practice run. So coming up short wasn't a fail, it merely showed where you need to improve. Big surprise, on a hill! Armed with your new data, you have a better chance of being a success next time. You were apparently doing OK until you tried to hang with the group going up the Big One. That should tell you DON'T DO THAT NEXT TIME!!!! Back off as early as you need to make sure you have your legs under you at the start of the hill, then take it at a comfortable pace. You may lose the group, but by not blowing up there, you'll have the strength to finish the ride. Oh, and don't forget, eat before you're hungry, drink before you're thirsty, blah blah blah.

  20. #20
    Legs; OK! Lungs; not! bobthib's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobthib View Post
    tizeye, thanks for the great pix. That's it alright. Certainly not flat fla. But then again, it's not upstate NY where I did several nice rides this past summer with much longer climbs.
    My summer rides with some climbs:

    Albany County Highlands

    Mid Hudson River Valley Tour

    To the Pinnacle

    Mid Hudson River Valley Tour

    On that mid Hudson river valley climb there was a horrible grade (14%) at one point 2/3 of the way in a 1/2 mi climb. I had to stop mid climb.


    Daspydyr: Your climb was 1200' over 4 mi which is 1200/(4 x 5280) X100% = 5.7% grade. That's just a about 10% more that the Mt. Haleakela ride in Maui. It's also about 31 miles short too.
    Last edited by bobthib; 10-05-10 at 10:56 AM.
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  21. #21
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    This is not a fail. Not going back later and climbing that hill would be a fail.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  22. #22
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    Wow-I had no idea there were hills like that in Florida. Now, just make it 2-5 miles long at that gradeand you'll have yourself a climb!
    Ride your Ride!!

  23. #23
    Legs; OK! Lungs; not! bobthib's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jppe View Post
    Wow-I had no idea there were hills like that in Florida. Now, just make it 2-5 miles long at that gradeand you'll have yourself a climb!
    Check out my summer rides above. It's not the Alps or the Rockies, but then it's not FLA.
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  24. #24
    Senior Member Kurt Erlenbach's Avatar
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    504 miles in September, with 2271 feet of climbing. That about 4.5 feet per mile. That's the real Florida. As I calculate it, that an average climb of 0.001%. People mock us Floridians when we call Sugarloaf a "mountain," but to me it looks like the Alps.

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