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  1. #1
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    Training for first road race- any advice?

    Hi everyone!
    I've recently decided to attempt my first road race in mid-August. It's a 30 mile race, with some good hills thrown in. I usually ride 20-25 miles, so the distance isn't a huge jump for me, but the hills are, as I usually ride mostly flat. I've already started getting off the flat canal trails I usually ride, but any advice on how to train for your first race? I obviously am not aiming to win the race, I just want to go against myself and finish! As far as how many days on/resting, etc. I also definitely need to improve on my climbing.
    I'd appreciate any advice!
    Last edited by theycallmemand; 07-03-14 at 04:35 PM.

  2. #2
    Travelling hopefully chasm54's Avatar
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    I suggest you look in the racers forum, and specifically at "the 33" - the road racing sub-forum. There's a sticky there entitled "New to racing? Here's a tip or two" as well as a host of threads on tactics, training, and so forth.

    30 miles seems short for a road race. Is it an official race under USA cycling rules? If so, and it's your first, presumably it's Cat 5?
    There have been many days when I haven't felt like riding, but there has never been a day when I was sorry I rode.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the tip! I will definitely check that out.

    As for your questions, I'm going to guess it is probably not an official race. Honestly, I have no idea; how do you know? I only know about the race because it's an annual race held in my hometown. It's a month and a half away and registration isn't even open yet. They have a 30 and a 50 mile race.

  4. #4
    Travelling hopefully chasm54's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by theycallmemand View Post
    Thanks for the tip! I will definitely check that out.

    As for your questions, I'm going to guess it is probably not an official race. Honestly, I have no idea; how do you know? I only know about the race because it's an annual race held in my hometown. It's a month and a half away and registration isn't even open yet. They have a 30 and a 50 mile race.
    Look it up on the USA Cycling website. If it's a sanctioned race, you'll need a day licence. The website also has a section giving information for thise who wish to start racing.

    Quite apart from the speed, the hills and the frequent changes of pace (in road racing it isn't the average speed that kills you, it's the repeated accelerations) you need to be able to ride safely in a bunch. Probably the most useful thing you can do at this late stage is find a local group and join their rides so you can get some practice in riding at close quarters.
    There have been many days when I haven't felt like riding, but there has never been a day when I was sorry I rode.

  5. #5
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    If you normally ride 25 flat miles, a USA Cycling-sanctioned 30-mile hilly road race is all too likely to rip you apart so fast your pack riding skills will be irrelevant as you'll be dropped in a few minutes.

    As others have already said, go over to the racing forum and read the sticky threads there.

  6. #6
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    Chasm, I looked it up on the website and it is in fact an official race, although it is listed as 'not yet permitted.' I will keep an eye on that, and when it opens I will buy a day permit. Thank you for alerting me to that.

    Achoo, I have been working on my climbing and hill riding in the last couple of weeks, so that hopefully the race doesn't rip me apart too fast. I knew it would be a big change, so I'm trying to adjust my body to that. I will definitely work on my pack riding skills, but am not thinking that I'm going to be way up in the main pack.

    Thank you both for the tip to look at the racing forum, I'm just getting the chance to go there and check it out right now.

  7. #7
    Senior Member robabeatle's Avatar
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    You have ridden in hammerfests, pacelines, etc.? If not, you are in for a rude awakening and possibly endangering others.

  8. #8
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    Can you ride the course prior to the race?
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

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