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  1. #1
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    How best to use the remaining days before PBP ?

    Is it best just to ride short and easy or is it a good idea to put in some longer rides or some intervals or..... any thoughts ?

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    Senior Member lonesomesteve's Avatar
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    I'm no training expert, but everything I've read suggests that now's the time for tapering. Decrease volume but maintain some intensity in your riding. So keep the rides relatively short but throw in some intervals and hill climbing.

    Instead of taking long rides, make sure you're mentally prepared, well rested, your bike is in tip-top shape, triple-check your packing list, etc.
    "You can buy status, but sucking is immutable. After a certain point, upgrading only makes you suck more ostentatiously."
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    Randomhead
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    I figure I did my last long pre-PBP ride yesterday. I might do a mountainous 60 miler next Saturday assuming that I will recover in time for the plane ride to France. In general though, there is not much you can do now other than riding enough to keep yourself sane.

  4. #4
    Senior Member The Octopus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lonesomesteve View Post
    Instead of taking long rides, make sure you're mentally prepared, well rested, your bike is in tip-top shape, triple-check your packing list, etc.
    Agree.

    Or... you could ride Ventoux by all four routes (the three paved ones plus the unpaved forestal road) on 18 August. On a fixed-gear bike. Will let y'all know how that turns out -- both the Ventoux deal and my PBP, also on a fixed-gear -- later this month.

    Seriously, though. Best thing to do is relax and recharge and make sure you're as healthy and well-rested as you can be when you get to the start line.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Homeyba's Avatar
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    Whatever you do, don't crash!!!! Back in 99 a friend of mine clipped the rear wheel of the bike in front of him on a training ride two days before his plane was supposed to leave. He broke his collar bone. He made the flight but not the ride. It was a pretty sad flight for him being on a plane with a bunch of other PBPer's knowing he couldn't ride.

    Hope you all have a safe a fun trip to France!!!!!!
    It doesn't get harder, you just go slower.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Octopus View Post
    Agree.

    Or... you could ride Ventoux by all four routes (the three paved ones plus the unpaved forestal road) on 18 August. On a fixed-gear bike. Will let y'all know how that turns out -- both the Ventoux deal and my PBP, also on a fixed-gear -- later this month.

    Seriously, though. Best thing to do is relax and recharge and make sure you're as healthy and well-rested as you can be when you get to the start line.
    Good luck on that fixie, Mr. Octopus!

  7. #7
    Senior Member downtube42's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Homeyba View Post
    Whatever you do, don't crash!!!! Back in 99 a friend of mine clipped the rear wheel of the bike in front of him on a training ride two days before his plane was supposed to leave. He broke his collar bone. He made the flight but not the ride. It was a pretty sad flight for him being on a plane with a bunch of other PBPer's knowing he couldn't ride.

    Hope you all have a safe a fun trip to France!!!!!!
    Amen to that. I took a ride on my unicycle last week, just for something a little different. I fell hard and could easily have broken a collar bone or wrist, but only suffered abrasions and a bruised elbow. The uni is put away, and I'm a little more careful on my commute.
    What is bicycle touring?
    "So I kept looking and eventually found that a spark plug had same threads. So I cycled next two days until I got to Jackson, MS with a spark plug instead of right pedal." - mev

  8. #8
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    So, how did everybody's plans work out?

  9. #9
    Randomhead
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    I finished. That was my plan. I felt pretty good most of the time. My only problems were eating enough and sleeping. I felt better on PBP than on any of the other long rides I've done this year, so I guess my training worked. I think my best riding was between Brest and Carhaix, I was passing everyone. I had to ride fast at the end to make the time cutoff since I stopped to sleep a couple of times. My lower back was a little sore from that, but it didn't slow me down much.

    I'm still very slow climbing anything steep, which did slow me down overall. Working on my weight so that's not as much of an issue. I'm getting better at managing my sinus problems without medication, that really had a bad effect on my early season training and weight.

    I think working on my speed in August was the right approach. I was a little worried about losing my base endurance, but that wasn't an issue. If I ate right, I could ride at speed.

  10. #10
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    I had a good and very interesting PBP. Started out pretty fast on sunday afternoon, did not drink enough and had really bad cramps all through the first night. Got a lot better on monday and got to Brest at half past eight. On the way home I tore off my rear derailleur leaving a hard to get out piece of it still in the frame. Luckily this was just half a mile from the secret control ! A lot of nice french people did their best to help me and after a couple of tries (and four hours) I could ride to Paris with almost all my gears working, and the same model Mavic RD Lemond won TDF with. Got in under 75 hours and learned a lot about myself and how amazingly helpful people can be !

  11. #11
    Senior Guest Andrey's Avatar
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    Everything worked perfect for me on PBP except a broken brake cable in the middle of the rainy night. I managed to sleep over 10 hours and stop almost at every cafe for a cup of "cafe" and a pastry and spend tons of time at every control people watching and taking pictures and still managed to finish the ride in 87 hours and 45 min.
    I did ride to Versailles from Paris a couple of times and I went Paris sightseeing on the bike before the event riding 60-80 km a day. It was a nice warm up before the ride.

    After the last control though I started having ankle pain and slowed down to a crawling 9 km/h.
    I tried to experience all those things you hear and see on PBP. I slept in the ditch for 1/2 hour , on the floor at the last control, although cots were available, I waited purposely in line once for food at one of the controls.
    After the ride instead of sleeping in the gym I even used my emergency bevy sack to crawl in and sleep for a few hours outside on the grass before riding back to the apartment in Paris.

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    Randomhead
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    I probably would have gone faster had I stopped at more cafes, particularly on the first full day. At the first stop I ate the soup and it didn't agree with me.

  13. #13
    Senior Guest Andrey's Avatar
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    My flight from Paris to JFK was cancelled because of the hurricane Irene and I had to fly to Montreal. To USA buses were canceled and trains were full, so my family drove to Montreal to pick me up. We spent the whole day in Montreal sightseeing and then drove home to Hudson Valley during the hurricane just to discover that the Thruway was closed below Albany and we had to use local roads. Most of them were closed because of the fallen trees and wires or were just flooded. It took me 12 hours to drive from Montreal to Kingston with lots of detours, instead of normal 5-6 hours.
    Hudson Valley was like a war zone after the Irene. That was an adventure all by itself. We were lucky only to have an inch of water in basement and no power for 4 days.

  14. #14
    Senior Member k7baixo's Avatar
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    Congratulations to all the participants - finishers and even those who fell short of their goal.
    Cheers, Gerry
    gerryelam.wordpress.com

  15. #15
    Senior Member The Octopus's Avatar
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    Had a great PBP, despite a solid drenching on Monday. 80:00 out of the 84-hour group. 10 hours' sleep. Not as much cafe time as I wanted. The controls really are time-sinks. Rode fixed, 48x18.

    Had a great ride up and down Mont Ventoux four times on the Thursday before. 187km. 19,000 feet of climbing. Nearly 18 hours' time. Rode fixed, 48x18, except for the unpaved forest road, which I climbed in 48x19 (and still went for a pretty long walk on part of it!). Epic day.

    Great ride the day after after PBP, too. From Versailles into Paris and then a day riding around the city, which is totally the way to see Paris -- by bike. Even took the obligatory lap around the Champs d'Elysses and the rotary around the Arc de Triumph. Took a lot of nerve, and more than a few prayers, to go play with Parisian rush-hour drivers in that roundabout. Toughest thing I did all week.

    Can't wait until 2015!

  16. #16
    Senior Member downtube42's Avatar
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    PBP was terrific for me. I lucked out with the weather, sleeping through the one storm that crossed my path. No mechanicals, no flats. 30k extra riding from a bad turn around 1:00 am Wednesday. My cyclocomputer went bezerk around the same time, causing me some confusion for a while. I finished about 9.5 hours ahead; In retrospect I should have slept at the last control and finished in the daylight.

    My bike didn't make it onto the plane in Paris, but was eventually delivered to my house 4 days later. Actually that was easier, as I didn't have to deal with a bike case in Chicago.

    Not sure about 2015. It was a grand but expensive adventure. Other, closer, 1200k rides beckon.
    What is bicycle touring?
    "So I kept looking and eventually found that a spark plug had same threads. So I cycled next two days until I got to Jackson, MS with a spark plug instead of right pedal." - mev

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    Randomhead
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    I also managed to sleep through the thunderstorm. Turns out starting Monday morning didn't work out like it did in 2007, seems like those riders got a lot more rain.

    If I go again, I will stay in a discount hotel, probably further from Saint-Quentin towards Paris.

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