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  1. #1
    Out of breath again. suntreader's Avatar
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    Getting ready for my first race

    I'm getting ready for my first race... actually a charity ride... in February 2005 (see link in my signature).

    I have to choose between 30 miles... which I can do right now... or a metric century which I am not presently prepared for.

    Although there will be no awards or anything like that, I still don't want to be last person to finish. (Hopefully, there will be a really pathetic rider that I can stay ahead of... or somebody who'd be willing to accept a bribe to stay behind me.)

    Anyway, can anyone suggest a regimen or timetable that I can use to get ready for the event?

  2. #2
    Banned. DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by suntreader
    I'm getting ready for my first race... actually a charity ride... in February 2005 (see link in my signature).

    I have to choose between 30 miles... which I can do right now... or a metric century which I am not presently prepared for.

    Although there will be no awards or anything like that, I still don't want to be last person to finish. (Hopefully, there will be a really pathetic rider that I can stay ahead of... or somebody who'd be willing to accept a bribe to stay behind me.)

    Anyway, can anyone suggest a regimen or timetable that I can use to get ready for the event?
    First off, it is a RIDE, not a RACE, and that is one big difference, as it sets an entirely different tone for your activity.

    A ride is to ENJOY, and you should have no problem getting prepared for a metric century by February, living in SC.

    There are a lot of "preparation for centuries" web pages, just do a Google and they pop up. Bicycling mag has pne on their web site, as I remember.

    I would just keep riding, setting myself a schedule where I had at least one long ride each week - increasing that ride by about 5 miles per week, some short rides, and some rest days. What is the terrain like, and will you be able to practice on the same terrain? That is a big factor.

    If you can do 50 miles or more in one ride before the RIDE, you should be fine for 62 miles. Be sure to allow several days of very easy rides just prior to the RIDE, and get yourself used to your nutritional and hydration needs BEFORE the ride.

    On the day of the ride SET YOUR OWN PACE, starting easily and relaxed - don't push it or you will ruin the rest of the ride for yourself. If you have energy left at the end, that is when you might want to push. And don't worry if youare last - the goal is to finish, and that is it.

    Just keep peddling and you will make it just fine. And HAVE FUN!

  3. #3
    Out of breath again. suntreader's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DnvrFox
    What is the terrain like, and will you be able to practice on the same terrain? That is a big factor.
    Our terrain is absolutely flat... as far as the eye can see. There is some undulation, but no more than 30 feet above sea level along the entire century route. The only "climbs" will be the bridges over the Intracoastal Waterway.

    I won't be able to practice on the actual route because it is composed of major highways that will be too busy. (Lanes will be blocked-off on race... er ride... day.) It would be crazy to get out there in 60-70 mph tourist traffic. However, I have a safer 14 mile circuit with essentially the same terrain that I can just keep lapping.

    Thanks for the good ideas.

  4. #4
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    I would not worry about being last if you attempt the century. This sort of ride of ride is not filled with ultrafit 25 year old on the latest on the latest lightweight race machinery. Even if it is, they can't all keep up the pace to finish at the front of the ride.
    If you can do a 30 miler at present, then with just a little bit of sense, then you should be able to do 50, and there is not much more to a 65miler. Advice to you is to take it just a bit steady until you feel comfortable, probably about 5 miles or so, and then go at your normal pace. I would also take head on Resting and feeding before the ride, and for the wek before, start "carbo loading". That means plenty of Pasta, Rice, Potatoes, etc. I know with me, I do a hard ride each year that is around 12 hours long, this is the one chance I have to eat all the sticky buns and pies that I want and really enjoy this part of the training. On the day have a good breakfast a couple of hours before the ride, and on the ride supplement with cereal bars, sandwiches, or anything else you may fancy, but more importantly--- Keep up the water intake. If you can drink a litre of water an hour, even if it is cold and wet and miserable, then you will benefit. Even a little dehydration will affect your riding capabilities.
    As I have said do not worry about being last. You currently do 30 miles at a time. There will be plenty on the ride that are not fit, overweight, on heavy bikes that are not suitable, and have never done more that 20 miles at a time.

  5. #5
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    Good luck on your ride. Odds are you will find it surprisingly easy. Well-planned group rides like this generally bring out the best in us. Enjoy.

  6. #6
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    I think the people here gave you some great advice and tips. Have fun with the ride!! Also, don't forget that the riding with a group will be easier than solo riding due to drafting factor. Your heart rate will more likely be lower with drafting others in the group and will let you go longer. Just remeber if you do to take your turn in front once in a while. Again, have fun!
    Segovia the Maestro!

  7. #7
    Recovering Retro-grouch CRUM's Avatar
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    Back in the 80's I differentiated between "rides" and "races". I trained for races by going on rides. I was intense and focused. After 3 seasons, I realized the competitive aspect of races was not enough to feed my fun. So I just ride now. I still race occaisionally, but they are just rides I tend to push harder on. The fun is back.

    My advice - Go for the metric Century. Pushing yourself to new heights is half the battle. But most of all, don't make it work, a chore, something you have to do. Whatever it takes, keep the fun factor in.
    Keep it 'tween the ditches

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