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  1. #1
    Senior Member axelfox's Avatar
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    Local Tips on Training for First Century?

    Alright, my friend is going to have me to do my first century with him. I did my the Cool Breeze Metric, and to be honest, I got kind of bored after a while. Don't get me wrong, great logistical ride and great organizers. I thought 60m would be just fine for me, but I don't want to wait around for him, so I'll do a century so I can say I did it and get it out of the way of my cycling goals.

    He wants to do the Borrego Springs Century, and since it's less than three months away, I figure I'll need to get training soon.

    My weekly ride is only the SART, a RT of only about 15 miles for me. I'm looking for training regimes and local routes.

    My initial thought is to do a "triangle": work my way up to 100 miles and then back down near the ride day. How many rides should I do of the 100 miles?

    As far as routes, I've only been biking for a couple of months, so my route knowledge is only limited to SART . To increase my mileage, I thought I would do SART--->PCH--->Back Bay-->Irvine bike trail until the end, and then go back.

    Thoughts, comments appreciated.

  2. #2
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    double what you are doing now as a base then add 10% per week leading up to the event tou shouls have a few 70+ miles under your belt.

    Explore OFF the bike trails to change it up. Do some hills too. Most long rides have climbing in them.

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    Senior Member thomson's Avatar
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    I will add that a lot depends on whether you just wish to finish the century or you wish to achieve a particular performance objective.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by axelfox View Post
    Alright, my friend is going to have me to do my first century with him. I did my the Cool Breeze Metric, and to be honest, I got kind of bored after a while. Don't get me wrong, great logistical ride and great organizers. I thought 60m would be just fine for me, but I don't want to wait around for him, so I'll do a century so I can say I did it and get it out of the way of my cycling goals.
    I'm confused about a few things. Is it his first century too, or does he do them already and he is trying to get you to do one? You imply you have to wait around for him, is he much slower that you? You were bored on the metric, was it because it was too easy or the route was uninteresting? Or were you waiting around for your friend? How did you do on the metric? How is your riding now compared to leading up to the metric?

  5. #5
    Senior Member Garfield Cat's Avatar
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    The SART is a good stretch of road, from PCH in Huntington Beach to the county line touching Riverside County at Green River. So a great deal of your training for the Century can be done on the SART. For the hilly portion of a Century, try Newport Coast. Or go south on PCH to Dana Point and back.

    An organized (not race) Century is a long ride with rest stops in between. I like the rest stops: good energy type food and drinks.

    I don't think you need to do several 100 mile training rides. Work your way up to 70 miles with several rest stops. But don't linger on these stops. Rest enough for nutrition and some hydration and pit stop. During a 70 mile ride at quick stops I rest 5 minutes and at the half way, I rest 10-15 minutes. Then I get antsy and want to ride again.

    If you're not specifically training for a time, then bring along a backpack and cut up some fruit in a plastic bag. Bring some Fig Newtons, bananas, and you're set. This should help you with nutrition and simulate the Century experience. The hydration stops at SART are at Katella where all the homeless hang out. Then at Featherly Park and at Green River there's some fast food places.
    Last edited by Garfield Cat; 11-13-07 at 09:19 AM.

  6. #6
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    Eventhough most desert rides are labeled as flat rides, do some hill rides in preparation. Maybe something like Santiago Cyn. Not sure how the BS century course travels but on one of the rides it heads out to Salton Sea. Rolling hills, not tough but for a flat short distance rider, they can take their toll on you. Heading back to BS the ride rolled around the north(?) side of the airport. This section was very windy and a gentle ascent made it tough for most of the riders on that day.

    On another course, the ride headed out towards the 76,78???? This course took you down a large dip. There is a sign on the road labeling it as a 10% grade. Only about 1/8 of a mile but many riders suffer on it!

    Beautiful area though! When I did the rides out there, there were only about 200 riders. I like it that way compared to rides like Palmsprings (what is it, 10,000 now?).

    Of of the SART you can take Lincoln heading east. I believe it turns into Knoll Ranch (hope I'm right!). You ought to get of the path and try riding up that hill to see how faryou can make it up. So what if you don't make it all the way up, it's training. Try that a few times just to get in some kind of climbing efforts.

    Or you can use Imperial on the South side of the 91, it's got a good climb in there. But I believe the road changes names somewhere along the line.

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    Senior Member axelfox's Avatar
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    Thanks for all of the tips.

    I'm not going for a specific time, just want to finish. My friend was invited by another friend, and I would say I'm the weakest rider of them all; however, I don't mind if I fall back. This is my first metric, and his first one too (but he's a much stronger rider than me). I would say I am only slightly a better ride since the metric.

    When I said I got bored, it's just my personality type. It wasn't that it was too easy, it's just the part on sitting on the bike for such a long time. I think I did the metric in 4-5 hours, but I can't remember for sure. Before that, I just did 15mi RT rides on the SART and then one 40 to Seal Beach to make sure we could do the Metric.

  8. #8
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    One thing that is very different beetween a metric and a century is at about mile 65, I MUST eat something solid. 50-60 miles I am fine with a powerbar.

    On a century, I find that eating something at mile 65 is a tremendous help. On the Bear, they serve turkey sandwiches at about mile 60. Some of the best sandwiches I've ever had!

    On Breathless Agony, I wasn't feeling very well till I stuffed a couple of P&J sandwiches in my pie hole at aboutmile 65!

    Did a century in Ventura with a friend. Nothing else around but a MickyD's. I ate a couple of Quarter Pounders with cheese at about mile 65. Man did I feel great after that!

    Eating something at mile 65'ish means the difference in dragging into the finish and sprinting at mile 95! YRMV!

  9. #9
    Dances with Cars ladyicon's Avatar
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    I have ridden the Borrego spring century before, and if I can di it,anyone can . If it is a very windy day then it can be very hard going into the wind

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    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ladyicon View Post
    I have ridden the Borrego spring century before, and if I can di it,anyone can . If it is a very windy day then it can be very hard going into the wind
    I think the Borrego rides are so cool, as long as it aint wet. A few years back, I signed up Gina to do the ride. She did the ride and I followed in the truck as a suppot vehicle. She did very well that day, I had fun!

  11. #11
    Senior Member axelfox's Avatar
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    well, if I start in the first week of Dec. I'll have about 8 weeks to train. Hopefully I can get in at least two rides a week.

  12. #12
    ThreadKiller Evoracer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by axelfox View Post
    well, if I start in the first week of Dec. I'll have about 8 weeks to train. Hopefully I can get in at least two rides a week.
    I'm always crossing the SART on my way to some of the climbs in the Orange hills if you need some easier climbing routes to start with. May also be heading out towards Lake Elsinore this Sunday if you need a slow long ride.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Sci-Fi's Avatar
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    A lot of people I know that like to ride centuries follow a runner's marathon training schedule to prevent any injuries and build up relative strength and stamina for the event. Proper diet or changing eating habits can help, but most aren't that serious or are unwilling to give up their favorite foods. Can do a search and follow one of the many marathon training recommendations out there and adjust the training mileage and terrain to fit your century event. Can even pre-ride/scout various sections of the route (if the event is nearby) to see where you hit the wall or need to change gearing or the cassette for the best compromise.

    Know a few that like to fill and freeze one or more of their bottles with water or a sports drink so they have something cool/cold later in the race if the support stations run out of/don't carry cold drinks. The body will absorb cold drinks faster and it tastes better cold anyways...lol. You might be surprised how long the ice lasts before melting completely, but it depends on the ambient temp that day.

  14. #14
    Sprint the hills! djgonzo007's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsigone View Post
    double what you are doing now as a base then add 10% per week leading up to the event tou shouls have a few 70+ miles under your belt. Do some hills too. Most long rides have climbing in them.
    ^ This is good advice. The key is saddle time. Set a goal for the amount of time (hours) you want to spend in the saddle each week. This is more important than miles as your sit bones will wear out long before your legs will.
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  15. #15
    Scum, Freezebag! Mo'Phat's Avatar
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    While training for my first century, I did two to three rides during the weekdays of 15 to 25 miles. About an hour to an hour and a half. On Sunday, I'd go for 40 miles the first week, 50 the next, and so on until two weeks prior to the century I did an unsupported 85 miler. For the next two weeks, I did 15-30 miles 3x per week to stay loose.

    You need to have some time and distance in your butt, legs, back, neck, arms...and digestive system. Also, at mile 55, DO NOT have apple pie ala mode with hot chocolate. Trust me on this.

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