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  1. #1
    CRIKEY!!!!!!! Cyclaholic's Avatar
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    My first organised event - 131miles! HELP!!!

    OK, so in a moment of bravery after watching a mountain stage of the TDF I signed up for my first organised 'challenge' ride. 210km (131miles) aroun Port Phillip bay. Mostly flat but with some hills near the start.

    The event is 11 weeks away and I have absolutely no idea how to prepare for it. The longest I've ridden in the past is about 160km in one day but broken into 3 lots with long stops in between...... this ride has a 12 hour time limit.

    At the moment I'm commuting about 50km a day, 5 days a week. I eat quite healthy but at 227lb I suspect that I may be carrying a bit too much weight for my 5'11" height.

    How do I prepare for this event? I'm a little apprehensive now that the reality is setting in, and I'm motivated to train long and hard for the next 11 weeks, whatever it takes, I just need to know what that is.

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    Out of Commission OC Roadie's Avatar
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    Don't worry, you've got time and with the base you've mentioned, you can do this. In addition to your commuting, you should be doing one long ride on the weekend. Start with a distance that is long but "doable". I would suggest starting with 50 miles, unless that isn't far for you or seems like too much. keep adding 5-10 miles to your long ride each week until you're up to about 75% of your goal distance. Plan rest stops about every 20 miles, as you adjust to the distances try and go further between stops and keep thme short. Get a couple rides in at this distance before your event. Start cutting back the week before your event to rest up. I would also take advantage of your commuting days. I would use them to recover after your long day and push the tempo when you're feeling fresh. You may want to choose one day a week to take a long route on your commute. During this training time it's really important to train yourself to eat and drink enough on the bike. If you don't already have energy food and drink of choice, start experimenting now to see what works for you and let your body ajust. I wouldn't worry about the weight too much, you're not going to lose 20 lbs in the next 11 weeks, and I've seen plenty of 200-250lb guys on centuries and doubles.
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  3. #3
    Lets Ride Trekke's Avatar
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    I just finished a 160 miler in around 9 hrs. I do a couple to three big rides like this every year. My training consist of increased milage every week. Be sure to take a day off the bike and at least one day easy spinning each week. The weekend before the big ride I try to do a ride that is > 60% but < 75% of the big ride. For the rest of the week leading up to the big day I eat 20% more good carbs than normal, drink water all day long and increase my sodium intake. I ride only a few days the week before but very easy and lay off completely two days before the big event. When I don't ride I usually walk the neighborhood just to stay loose. (no need becoming a couch potatoe). Take your vitamins and get more sleep than usual. Night before eat a moderate meal with plenty of good carbs such as rice, oatmeal, potatoes, pasta topped off with some grilled chicken (no steak and fries) and fresh fruit. Just before bed eat some cottage cheese and fruit. I eat a bagel with peanut butter for breakfast and sometimes oatmeal and wheat toast about 2 hrs before the event. Pop a bananna or two before start and you arre set. If you have the base miles and eat right you will be fine.

    Base miles are real important as well as hydration, rest and nutrition.

    Things NOT to do.

    No diet pop, tea, or other diaretics a couple weeks out. Especially none the day off or before.

    No fast food or heavy meals with greasy stuff.

    you are thinking right when you think preperation. Those who don't suffer. I have done this for a while now and preperation pays big dividens.

    There is more - I am just tired of typing.

    Good Luck.
    Phil

  4. #4
    Dragons are so stupid. gnosbike's Avatar
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    Here's a site for nutrition.
    http://www.raceacrossamerica.org/Default.aspx?tabid=144

    and check out cptips
    http://www.cptips.com

    Finally if you have time read:
    Endurance Cycling by Dr. Edmund Burke.
    Cycle with alacrity.

  5. #5
    Out of Commission OC Roadie's Avatar
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    No diet pop, tea, or other diaretics a couple weeks out. Especially none the day off or before.
    I agree almost completely and think your advice is great, except for the above quote. Do you say this because you feel that diaretics will hinder your pre-ride hydration? I normally start to drink extra water to a few days before a big ride to ensure good hydration, but I also drink my coffee every morning and an occasional soda (not a huge soda drinker anyways), and I've never noticed dehydration problems as a result. The only reason I would stay away from diaretics before a ride is that they create too many bathroom stops (and that's only if I drink them immediately before). Anywys, just curios where that advice comes from.
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    Pat
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    Well, 131 miles is a distance.

    You will need to pay attention to avoid dehydration. You will need to take in a decent amount of food. You only need to average a tad over 10 mph, so you can take brief stops to your heart's content. However, in hot weather, on a long ride, it is easy to get electrolyte imbalance and hyponatriumia. You can replace the majority of your electrolytes with something like gatoraid. However, gatoraid is quite low on sodium so taking some table salt with you might be a good idea. A sign of the onset of hyponatriumia is a craving for salt.

    Something that almost certainly will happen is that you will deplete your glycogen reserves or BONK. When that happens, all you can do is cruise and you can not sprint at all. Towards the end of the ride, you will probably be forced to just go along at a medium cruise and no better. Plus by that time, various parts of your body will ache like your rear end, hands, neck, shoulders and so on. The last 20 miles will probably not be much fun. But isn't that the price one pays for being able to have the experience?

  7. #7
    Lets Ride Trekke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OC Roadie
    I agree almost completely and think your advice is great, except for the above quote. Do you say this because you feel that diaretics will hinder your pre-ride hydration? I normally start to drink extra water to a few days before a big ride to ensure good hydration, but I also drink my coffee every morning and an occasional soda (not a huge soda drinker anyways), and I've never noticed dehydration problems as a result. The only reason I would stay away from diaretics before a ride is that they create too many bathroom stops (and that's only if I drink them immediately before). Anywys, just curios where that advice comes from.
    Mostly hydration issues. Moderation I think is fine. As long as a person has a solid hydration plan through the ride any negatives can easily be overcome. Personally I stay away from diet pop anywhere close to a ride. I have a friend that will stop at the local McDonalds on almost every ride for a diet coke. He had big time cramping issues and finally stopped and the cramps went away. Just my personal observation.
    Phil

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    CRIKEY!!!!!!! Cyclaholic's Avatar
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    Thanks all for the feedback.

    OK, here's the plan, tell me what you think...

    My normal commute is 12 miles but I normaly do 20 miles on the way home. I cycle commute 5 days per week.

    All morning rides, and Monday, Wednesday, and Friday nights are at fat burning (low HR) range, may increase the distance to 30 miles in the evenings.

    Monday night commute is a 20 mile hammerfest, pushing the lactic threshold.

    I'll increase the distance on Tuesday & Thursday nights to 40 miles in the cardio range.

    Saturdays will be long training rides, starting at 60 miles, then adding 20 miles each week upto 140 miles i.e. 60 this week, 80 next week, 100 the week after, etc. which will leave me 4 or 5 Saturdays at 140 miles each, to get the times down.

    Sunday is rest day.

    Please critique this training plan, is it too ambitious?
    Last edited by Cyclaholic; 08-03-05 at 05:43 AM.

  9. #9
    Out of Commission OC Roadie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclaholic
    Thanks all for the feedback.

    OK, here's the plan, tell me what you think...

    My normal commute is 12 miles but I normaly do 20 miles on the way home. I cycle commute 5 days per week.

    All morning rides, and Monday, Wednesday, and Friday nights are at fat burning (low HR) range, may increase the distance to 30 miles in the evenings.

    Monday night commute is a 20 mile hammerfest, pushing the lactic threshold.

    I'll increase the distance on Tuesday & Thursday nights to 40 miles in the cardio range.

    Saturdays will be long training rides, starting at 60 miles, then adding 20 miles each week upto 140 miles i.e. 60 this week, 80 next week, 100 the week after, etc. which will leave me 4 or 5 Saturdays at 140 miles each, to get the times down.

    Sunday is rest day.

    Please critique this training plan, is it too ambitious?
    I think it may be a bit much, and I would probably burnout if I tried to stick with weeks like this. Remember that recovery days are just as important (if not more) than the tough ones. I would pick at least one day that your commute both ways is very easy (65% mhr or less) and keep the distances shorter on this day. I think on your long rides, you're adding mileage too quickly and I don't think you need to get up to 140 miles, unless you just enjoy long distance and you have the time. I think I would increase the mileage by more like 10 miles per week and get up to 100 miles. I would stick to around 100-110 miles for your long ride and just get strong at that distance. My double century training never goes above 120 miles and usually consists of a 90-105 mile ride every Sunday. I think with your daily commuting and willingness to put in the time and effort you will do great on your 130 mile ride, probably be easier than your anticipating.
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  10. #10
    Lets Ride Trekke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclaholic
    Thanks all for the feedback.

    OK, here's the plan, tell me what you think...

    My normal commute is 12 miles but I normaly do 20 miles on the way home. I cycle commute 5 days per week.

    All morning rides, and Monday, Wednesday, and Friday nights are at fat burning (low HR) range, may increase the distance to 30 miles in the evenings.

    Monday night commute is a 20 mile hammerfest, pushing the lactic threshold.

    I'll increase the distance on Tuesday & Thursday nights to 40 miles in the cardio range.

    Saturdays will be long training rides, starting at 60 miles, then adding 20 miles each week upto 140 miles i.e. 60 this week, 80 next week, 100 the week after, etc. which will leave me 4 or 5 Saturdays at 140 miles each, to get the times down.

    Sunday is rest day.

    Please critique this training plan, is it too ambitious?
    Need more rest if you are going to ramp up this much. Also preperation is not just base miles. If you do not have a very solid nutrition plan to support this training you will not be able to complete the training but will fail in your overall goal. I cannot stress the importance of nutrition plans and the willingness to stick to it with deviations being none or very small. When you ride 50 miles that does one thing to your body. !00 miles your body really takes on a different character. You will need to practice and work on a solid "on bike" plan also. Everyone is different and no one can tell you for sure - you have to figure some of this out on your own. So your plan needs work.
    Phil

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclaholic
    OK, so in a moment of bravery after watching a mountain stage of the TDF I signed up for my first organised 'challenge' ride. 210km (131miles) aroun Port Phillip bay. Mostly flat but with some hills near the start.
    Hi Cyclaholic. I'm thinking of doing the around the bay classic as well. Just trying to figure out where the hills are? I've been to Melbourne and can't remember ever seeing anything that comes close to resembling a hill. Are you talking about going over the westgate?

    Cheers,
    Dave
    Last edited by HobartDave; 08-03-05 at 09:48 PM.

  12. #12
    CRIKEY!!!!!!! Cyclaholic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HobartDave
    Hi Cyclaholic. I'm thinking of doing the around the bay classic as well. Just trying to figure out where the hills are? I've been to Melbourne and can't remember ever seeing anything that comes close to resembling a hill. Are you talking about going over the westgate?

    Cheers,
    Dave
    Hi Dave,

    Re. the hills, I'm only going by what I've been told and by what's on the event's website...

    http://www.bv.com.au/inform.php?a=5&b=139&c=1452

    I have no idea what the place looks like as I've never been there but I'll be buying a few toppo maps tomorrow to check it out.

    I hope you decide to enter, it's in benefit of a worthy charity.

  13. #13
    CRIKEY!!!!!!! Cyclaholic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trekke
    Need more rest if you are going to ramp up this much. Also preperation is not just base miles. If you do not have a very solid nutrition plan to support this training you will not be able to complete the training but will fail in your overall goal. I cannot stress the importance of nutrition plans and the willingness to stick to it with deviations being none or very small. When you ride 50 miles that does one thing to your body. !00 miles your body really takes on a different character. You will need to practice and work on a solid "on bike" plan also. Everyone is different and no one can tell you for sure - you have to figure some of this out on your own. So your plan needs work.
    Totally agree with you, fortunately I have very good eating habits as it is. I can't stand junk like coke or mcdonalds. I only ever drink water, milk, or freshly squeezed OJ. The bulk of my calories comes from complex carbs like muesly, oats, rice, pasta, etc. Lots of steamed veggies with every meal. I snack on fresh fruit during the day, and I only eat meat occasionally, usually chicken. I think I may need to up the protein, probably with a whey protein shake in the evening.

    The bit I have to work out is eating on the bike - something I've never done. What should I be trying out? gels? power/clif bars? I want to experiment with different options and see how my energy levels go. I'm doing lots of research at the moment.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclaholic
    Hi Dave,

    Re. the hills, I'm only going by what I've been told and by what's on the event's website...

    http://www.bv.com.au/inform.php?a=5&b=139&c=1452

    I have no idea what the place looks like as I've never been there but I'll be buying a few toppo maps tomorrow to check it out.

    I hope you decide to enter, it's in benefit of a worthy charity.
    Well, they say there are hills to climb, but in Melbourne, i doubt they'll be very big. Not after coming from Hobart. Hopefully I'll get there. Getting me and my bike over there, and sorting out accommadation near the start/finish will be the bigest hurdles.

  15. #15
    CRIKEY!!!!!!! Cyclaholic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OC Roadie
    I think it may be a bit much, and I would probably burnout if I tried to stick with weeks like this. Remember that recovery days are just as important (if not more) than the tough ones. I would pick at least one day that your commute both ways is very easy (65% mhr or less) and keep the distances shorter on this day. I think on your long rides, you're adding mileage too quickly and I don't think you need to get up to 140 miles, unless you just enjoy long distance and you have the time. I think I would increase the mileage by more like 10 miles per week and get up to 100 miles. I would stick to around 100-110 miles for your long ride and just get strong at that distance. My double century training never goes above 120 miles and usually consists of a 90-105 mile ride every Sunday. I think with your daily commuting and willingness to put in the time and effort you will do great on your 130 mile ride, probably be easier than your anticipating.
    I'll take that onboard and not be too rigid with the plan. If I feel like I need to cut back I will as I definately don't want to burn out or stop enjoying it. Although I'd like to do the full 131 miles at least once during my preparation, just to reassure myself that I can, and to see how it feels.

  16. #16
    Out of Commission OC Roadie's Avatar
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    The bit I have to work out is eating on the bike - something I've never done. What should I be trying out? gels? power/clif bars? I want to experiment with different options and see how my energy levels go. I'm doing lots of research at the moment.
    Just start trying out different food and see what works. Your food should be tolerable, easy to eat on the bike, have the proper nutrional values (a good ratio of complex and simple carbs along with sodium and potassium) and be easy to carry in a jersey pocket. On a 100 mile ride I bring one gel flask, a baggie with about 6 Fig Newtons and some dried fruit, a banana and 1 or 2 Cliff Bars. Some other good choices are: pretzels (lots of carbs, no sugar and plenty of sodium), your own trail mix of granola, dried fruit and nuts, PB&J sandwich, just about any fruit. As far as gels and bars go, they're are a lot to choose from, some are terrible and some are pretty tolerable. I would go a get a few different brands and try them out. I like the Carb Boom brand of gels and Cliff Bars. Once you find one you like, stick to it and start using them regularly on your long rides. At first eating on the bike may upset your digestive system, keep at it and your body will adjust.
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  17. #17
    CRIKEY!!!!!!! Cyclaholic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OC Roadie
    Just start trying out different food and see what works. Your food should be tolerable, easy to eat on the bike, have the proper nutrional values (a good ratio of complex and simple carbs along with sodium and potassium) and be easy to carry in a jersey pocket. On a 100 mile ride I bring one gel flask, a baggie with about 6 Fig Newtons and some dried fruit, a banana and 1 or 2 Cliff Bars. Some other good choices are: pretzels (lots of carbs, no sugar and plenty of sodium), your own trail mix of granola, dried fruit and nuts, PB&J sandwich, just about any fruit. As far as gels and bars go, they're are a lot to choose from, some are terrible and some are pretty tolerable. I would go a get a few different brands and try them out. I like the Carb Boom brand of gels and Cliff Bars. Once you find one you like, stick to it and start using them regularly on your long rides. At first eating on the bike may upset your digestive system, keep at it and your body will adjust.
    Thanks OC, I'm going to start experimenting this weekend. A couple of question for you, does it matter if you wash down the bars/food with water or is it better to eat them 'dry'? I'm asking from a potential upset tummy point of view. Also, how do you time your eating?..... phew, there's so much strategy to being a 'roadie', my mtb friends think that road riding is only about pedalling for a long time then doing a short sprint at the end, how wrong are they!

  18. #18
    Out of Commission OC Roadie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclaholic
    Thanks OC, I'm going to start experimenting this weekend. A couple of question for you, does it matter if you wash down the bars/food with water or is it better to eat them 'dry'? I'm asking from a potential upset tummy point of view. Also, how do you time your eating?..... phew, there's so much strategy to being a 'roadie', my mtb friends think that road riding is only about pedalling for a long time then doing a short sprint at the end, how wrong are they!
    It's important to drink water along the gels and bars, it will help absorb them into your system, and some products act like a sponge and will dry up your system. Timing? On long rides, I try to consume at least 300 calories an hour between my drink mix, gels and food. This usually means every hour drinking about 1 bottle of drink mix, one squirt of gel from the flask and a little bit of dried fruit for a couple of Fig Newtons. I go for the bars when it I think it's a good time to. I'll also stop at a convienence store once or twice and grab a banana and sometimes Pop Tarts. If I remember right, your body can only digest ~300 calories per hour (of course everyone is different), there's not much point in taking in a lot more than you can digest. More often than not, I see people suffering from under eating and hydrating rather than over doing it though. A couple of quick other things I thought of. Use chamois buttr and bring some extra to apply around the halfway point, you'll thank yourself for it. I bring my drugstore baggie with me, it has Advil, Tums, and E-Caps (electrolyte tablets that just contain sodium and potassium). On long rides 100-200 miles I take an Advil and E-Cap at each rest stop, sometimes more if I'm sore or have been sweating a lot. All of those items will help with cramping issues.
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