Let me preface this by saying I have never ridden over 35 miles before. My rides are usually 20-25 mile loops through hilly terrain—my aim is usually to keep my average speed and cadence up.
I have wanted to ride a century for a while, so, I decided to give a metric a try. I picked out a nearly-flat route around Princeton NJ. My legs gave out after 20 miles . I pushed through and finished, though.
The final numbers were: 74.43 miles, average speed 13.3 mph. I was shooting for over 15mph, but, the route I had planned was supposed to top out at 61. Oops.
I learned a bit about nutrition, too. Completely hit the wall. Unfortunately, I was riding through cornfield after cornfield. I didn't see so much a store or downtown area from mile 13-30. Finally I chanced upon a CVS (I have never been so glad to see a CVS in my life!) picked up a gatorade, a bottle of water, some trail mix and a Snickers. That gave me enough to push though, but, I'll definitely pack some energy bars/gels next time. The ol' tank was empty for sure.
I ran into a bit of joint pain about 50 miles in. Interior knee pain on both (though, predominantly on my left knee) and some minor elbow pain. I plan on dropping by my LBS and seeing if there are any fit problems. That said, I've yet to run into any problems before this. Any ideas? My knee is still a bit sore but my legs feel completely fine! Go figure.
1985 Cannondale SR300, 1985 Cannondale ST400, Gary Littlejohn Cruiser, BMX
Congrats. My average was around 13 also when I began I have it up to around 14-15 now. The first time I rode 50 miles after 20 years I had outer knee problems from overuse (took a while for that to go away). I do about 50-60 miles during the week and 60 to 80 on Saturday. When you get over 60 miles different problems appear that might not on the shorter rides. for instance I am having problems now because my hands get so numb around mile 85. I am trying to figure that out. Just keep riding it gets easier..
Congratulations on finishing the ride! Nutrition is very important during long rides. I take along an extra energy bar whenever I ride long, even if I have planned food stops along the way. It has come in handy more than once.
Originally Posted by Xerum 525
Now get on your cheap bike and give me a double century. You walking can of Crisco!!