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Thinking about a century

Old 09-20-21, 11:48 AM
  #76  
REV160
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Depends on your pain tolerance. I did not do my first century until I had a base of 150 miles per week for at least five weeks and at least two 75 mile training rides. But that's just me. Some say "no pain = no gain"; I say "no pain = no pain." Then again, there's always Rule #5.
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Old 09-20-21, 12:11 PM
  #77  
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Taking 2-3 hour rides on varying terrain a couple times a week is a good way to get your body (butt, legs, shoulders, back) in shape. The more hills the better as they make it easier to do intervals where you stress the muscles and then let them recover.

On the day of the ride drinking water and eating high energy snacks like raisins will keep your blood flowing and your muscles fueled. There is also the concept of carbo loading by eating something like pasta the night before.

If it was a very windy day I would be inclined to pass on the event and wait for the next one. Going up a steep grade one gets to then go downhill and recover. With wind there is no recovery unless the loop route allows for a tailwind at the latter stages of the race. There is a reason why riders ride in tight groups and change the leader. If I am tailing a rider I can be in one gear higher and maintain my speed with lower RPM's.

If there is pain then you are doing something wrong and need to pause and think about what you need to change.
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Old 09-20-21, 01:09 PM
  #78  
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Originally Posted by ChamoisDavisJr View Post
Centuries are overrated. Unless you’re trying to impress non-cycling people by telling them you did a “Century”?

Nobody actually cares at all. I mean people at my work are impressed by an 18 mile commute. They’re dumbfounded if I take the long way to work at 32 miles.

Ride what you’re comfortable riding. If it’s a personal goal then sure, have at it.

With your riding experience you can do one no problem.

But really, why would you.
I actually agree with this although doing it a handful of times is something that was a personal accomplishment for me. A few thoughts I have:
- Although eating and drinking the right things has been mentioned, you don’t have enough time to experiment so that could be an issue
- I think 80 miles is the max I would go without it being a century and probably 75 miles for me. Something about going that high and not going to 100 miles messes with my head
- 1600’ for 100 miles isn’t that bad. I would imagine there is plenty of time to sit comfortably at 14 mph and just ride.

Go for it
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Old 09-20-21, 02:12 PM
  #79  
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Originally Posted by rsbob View Post

So it all depends on the audience and your peers.
This hits the nail right on the head for me. Unless you are winning Grand Tours, there is always someone faster and stronger*. But all that matters with your own achievements is your own peer group and personal goals - whatever those may be. Aged 53, I still ride with the same group of friends I rode with at school and we set our own goals for each year. We're not pros being paid to ride. It's just about fun, fitness, a healthy lifestyle and a bit of friendly competition and banter. I used to play 5-a-side football (soccer) and again it was fun and competitive within that peer group, while being a million miles away from the Premier League.

* https://www.cyclingweekly.com/news/l...smashed-232604
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Old 09-20-21, 02:15 PM
  #80  
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Good luck!
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Old 09-20-21, 04:03 PM
  #81  
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Even tho your surgery was last year sometime, I suggest you ask your for his/her’s thoughts or a Physical Therapist - would be even better if they were SportsMed people…

I’s suggest you train up to a century, especially since you said that at mile ~40, you got tired. I’d advise forgetting distance & speed, concentrate on time out and back at a constant cadence (say 90)…
30 years ago, riding a standard bicycle, I rode my 100mike course in ~4 1/2 hrs…I hoped to get that time to 4 hrs ( mostly flatland w/gentle hills). I remember the groin pain/numbness, back aches, neck pain & arms going numb at around mile 45-55…there is a good reason why there are massage therapists at the finish line (or should be)…Then got into a MVA that put me in hospital for 5 months & PT/OT therapies for over a decade. My ride switched to a Ryan Vanguard long wheelbased recumbent w/under-seat steering….I maintain the cadence of 90 but 4 1/2 hrs is about 35-50 miles depending on terrain…however - no back or neck pain, no numbness anywhere.
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Old 09-20-21, 06:56 PM
  #82  
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I had a very similar experience a couple of days ago with a 120km sportive event. Two big climbs, of which I had previously only ridden one of them over a 100km ride.

Suffered everything that downtube42 mentioned above - started too fast trying to stay with lead groups, got dehydrated, ran out of fuel (didn't eat enough). The 40km section between the two climbs were wildly undulating with long 10% ascents and descents. A tough course. On the final climb I hit the wall and had to stop for 20 minutes halfway up to regain composure, fuel and hydration. I badly miscalculated and paid the price. I did however end up completing the course and the 2,300m of climbing. I was happy to get through the mental aspect and the voices in my head to abandon - so I conquered that barrier.

My advice - be prepared, and try to train in similar conditions/distance to the actual sportive course - ramping things up too quickly could end in tears.
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Old 09-20-21, 07:07 PM
  #83  
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I trained for a fully-supported Century this year, the event was cancelled, so I did a solo ride of 130 miles the weekend that my event was supposed to be held. My longest ride of the season prior to this was 76 miles, but I had done several rides of 60+ miles. 130 miles was definitely a stretch distance.

I have ridden Centuries in prior years, however. So I knew what to expect, to some degree. But you can do this! Just keep pedaling!
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Old 09-23-21, 07:09 PM
  #84  
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Originally Posted by TSawyerLV View Post
I actually agree with this...

I think 80 miles is the max I would go without it being a century and probably 75 miles for me. Something about going that high and not going to 100 miles messes with my head
My longest ride this year was 94 miles, my friends in my bike club said "you should have rode around the block to get to 100!" lol...absolutely not. I remember being toast by the time I got home. There's a little hill to my house and I barely made it up that thing.

I sometimes ramble about to hit some of my favortite short climbs near my house but think my sweet spot for a "long" ride is about 60-75 or so.
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Old 09-25-21, 02:14 AM
  #85  
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Originally Posted by TSawyerLV View Post
I actually agree with this although doing it a handful of times is something that was a personal accomplishment for me. A few thoughts I have:
- Although eating and drinking the right things has been mentioned, you don’t have enough time to experiment so that could be an issue
- I think 80 miles is the max I would go without it being a century and probably 75 miles for me. Something about going that high and not going to 100 miles messes with my head
- 1600’ for 100 miles isn’t that bad. I would imagine there is plenty of time to sit comfortably at 14 mph and just ride.

Go for it
An 80 mile ride would be fine for me, not "rounding it up" from 90 would bug me. It's a weird psychological tic, but I've got it.
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Old 09-25-21, 04:06 PM
  #86  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
not "rounding it up"….It's a weird psychological tic, but I've got it.
I’ve got some club mates like that…circling around the neighborhood to get the right number!

Not me, when I’m done. That’s it.


Last edited by ChamoisDavisJr; 09-25-21 at 08:04 PM.
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Old 09-26-21, 05:32 AM
  #87  
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Originally Posted by ChamoisDavisJr View Post
I’ve got some club mates like that…circling around the neighborhood to get the right number!

Not me, when I’m done. That’s it.


I just did a silly 2 mile loop yesterday to round up from 98!
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Old 09-26-21, 03:00 PM
  #88  
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Some people analyze and overthink things too much...All you really need to do is to get on your bike and ride those 100 miles, yes you may feel a little uncomfortable at times, yes you may feel tired at times but that's just part of the game. Just do it.
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Old 09-28-21, 09:37 PM
  #89  
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Thank you all for the advice and encouragement.
I think I'm ready. However new concern now is the weather. Forecast is rain most of the day, temp 60-75. I know it's 5 days away and the forecast can change, but doing 100 will be hard enough without having to deal with rain.
I normally don't ride in the rain and don't have gear. I ordered a cheap packable rain jacket and helmet cover. Not sure what to do about hands and feet. And wet liner/chamois?
A little rain would be fine. Raining all/most of the day doesn't sound like fun.

Thoughts on surviving a century in the rain?
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Old 09-29-21, 05:12 AM
  #90  
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Do you already have fenders on your bike?
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Old 09-29-21, 05:18 AM
  #91  
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I'd probably skip it if rain is forecast all day, especially if a large crowd is expected. I started one in a drizzle and it got worse as the day went on. Descending a wet hairpin with cold hands among many riders of unknown abilities isn't fun. Folks falling in front of you while crossing railroad tracks isn't fun. I also drowned and ruined a freehub though I didn't find out until weeks later when it gave up mid ride. If you feel compelled to do the ride, dump a water bottle on the drivetrain when it gets gritty, carry a little chainlube. You'll get wet no matter what you wear.
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Old 09-29-21, 05:38 AM
  #92  
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Originally Posted by donm1967 View Post
Thank you all for the advice and encouragement.
I think I'm ready. However new concern now is the weather. Forecast is rain most of the day, temp 60-75. I know it's 5 days away and the forecast can change, but doing 100 will be hard enough without having to deal with rain.
I normally don't ride in the rain and don't have gear. I ordered a cheap packable rain jacket and helmet cover. Not sure what to do about hands and feet. And wet liner/chamois?
A little rain would be fine. Raining all/most of the day doesn't sound like fun.

Thoughts on surviving a century in the rain?
Full fenders, for sure. These help with keeping spray off of you. I have them on my commuter and my tourer. PG
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Old 09-29-21, 11:47 AM
  #93  
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Originally Posted by donm1967 View Post
Thank you all for the advice and encouragement.
I think I'm ready. However new concern now is the weather. Forecast is rain most of the day, temp 60-75. I know it's 5 days away and the forecast can change, but doing 100 will be hard enough without having to deal with rain.
I normally don't ride in the rain and don't have gear. I ordered a cheap packable rain jacket and helmet cover. Not sure what to do about hands and feet. And wet liner/chamois?
A little rain would be fine. Raining all/most of the day doesn't sound like fun.

Thoughts on surviving a century in the rain?

I wouldn't do it. A few little showers on the way, no big deal, but rain most of the day is going to make this a really unpleasant slog. And I'm with shelbyfv in my concern that you're really putting your safety at the mercy of other riders' skill at handling on wet roads. Given your history, an injury from a crash is probably the last thing you want from this experience.

I generally try to avoid things that will turn a long ride into an unpleasant ordeal.
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Old 10-01-21, 05:07 AM
  #94  
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Originally Posted by donm1967 View Post
Thank you all for the advice and encouragement.
I think I'm ready. However new concern now is the weather. Forecast is rain most of the day, temp 60-75. I know it's 5 days away and the forecast can change, but doing 100 will be hard enough without having to deal with rain.
I normally don't ride in the rain and don't have gear. I ordered a cheap packable rain jacket and helmet cover. Not sure what to do about hands and feet. And wet liner/chamois?
A little rain would be fine. Raining all/most of the day doesn't sound like fun.

Thoughts on surviving a century in the rain?
Well.

If it were a goal that I'd set and worked long and hard for, I'd still go. I'd be prepared to get wet. Although the forecast isn't cool/cold, getting wet can still make you cold so I'd make sure I had enough clothes to keep myself warm (pack a little extra in a trunk bag/handlebar bag/frame bag, if you have one)j, making sure that I had a wind barrier for my core, and concentrating on keeping head, hands and feet warm. Fenders (if possible) are a fantastic suggestion, probably the best wet weather gear available. I'd bring my best attitude. The mind is a wonderful thing, some people can turn the most miserable day into a fun adventure if they try hard enough. I'd make sure my bike was freshly lubed, and I'd give it some TLC afterwards: spray the road grit off with a hose; shake the excess water off (bounce a few times on the tires), take the tires and tubes off the rims, turn a fan on the bike. The next day, see if there's water in the frame by rotating it (end over end) and listen/feel for sloshing water. If there is, pull the seat tube and spill the water out. Maybe take the bike to the LBS and have them check headset/bottom bracket/wheel bearings for water and have them dry them out if needed.

It doesn't sound like, for you, this is a major long-term goal. If it was a ride I'd heard about recently and I thought "hey, that sounds like a cool thing to do", then, I personally wouldn't do it if there forecast was for a lot of rain, I'd do it another day, or do another ride another day. Like you said, occasional rain is no biggie, but a steady/heavy rain for much of the day would result in me not going.

If the rain is heavy enough, the ride might even be canceled by the organizers. That happened to me once, I had planned to do the MS ride over the TZ bridge, I was all set with a "team" (riding for a specific person with matching jerseys - the "team" was a bunch of Moms/Dads/kids), I had my kids' bikes on the car, my wife and I were riding the tandem. The morning of it was raining and cool (50's), so I broke out the rain gear and extra warm clothes for everyone. We packed up the car and headed over the bridge to Tarrytown, only to find the ride canceled. The bridge was under construction (constantly, at that point in time), there were metal construction plates in the traffic lane blocked off for bikes, and the organizers made the (smart) decision not to send a bunch of tyro cyclists over the bridge, over wet and slippery construction plates, in the rain.

If you are really psyched for the ride, and you don't mind getting wet, it could still be a fun ride, you might even have more fun "conquering the elements" with "a few hardy souls". It really depends on your attitude.
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Old 10-01-21, 09:14 AM
  #95  
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I've got a great one coming up that I am kind of excited about. This guy I know owns a place in Pickstown, SD where he goes to fish. I will spend Friday night (10/22) there and then on Saturday he will drop me off in Burton, NE. I will ride from Burton (pop. 10) to Monowi (pop.1) and through Gross (pop.2) and back to Pickstown - 107 miles. By the 2010 census, the three smallest towns in Nebraska on the same day - I'm calling it The Little City Century. And, better yet, it will be mostly all along the Outlaw Trail Scenic Byway, late in the fall - how cool is that?
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Old 10-01-21, 09:57 AM
  #96  
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
If you can ride 50 or 60 in a day, you can ride 100.
I'd like to add "If you can ride 50 or 60 comfortably in a day and feel like you could've ridden more when the ride is over, you can ride 100." But if you ride 50 and feel bad for the last 10 miles (like the OP stated), then 100 probably isn't a good jump, unless you have someone ready to pick you and your bike up when your legs cramp up and spasm.
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Old 10-04-21, 07:20 AM
  #97  
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Ride done !
The weather forecast called for rain in the morning, thunderstorms in the afternoon. It was raining on the drive there, but the on ride we didn't get a single drop.
First 75 was good, last 25 was a little rough. A few 6-7 mile stretches of straight farm road against the wind.
Along the ride I was chased by farm dogs 3 times .
At mi 90 my feet felt pretty bad, but after 92 felt better. The last few miles the wind was behind us and cranked it in to the finish.

Thanks again for all of the replies.
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Old 10-04-21, 12:12 PM
  #98  
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Originally Posted by Trek1100FeltZ5 View Post
I've got a great one coming up that I am kind of excited about. This guy I know owns a place in Pickstown, SD where he goes to fish. I will spend Friday night (10/22) there and then on Saturday he will drop me off in Burton, NE. I will ride from Burton (pop. 10) to Monowi (pop.1) and through Gross (pop.2) and back to Pickstown - 107 miles. By the 2010 census, the three smallest towns in Nebraska on the same day - I'm calling it The Little City Century. And, better yet, it will be mostly all along the Outlaw Trail Scenic Byway, late in the fall - how cool is that?
That deserves a "Hee Haw Salute!" Good luck on your ride and hope you have good weather (and no actual outlaws).
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Old 10-04-21, 12:23 PM
  #99  
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Originally Posted by donm1967 View Post
Ride done !
The weather forecast called for rain in the morning, thunderstorms in the afternoon. It was raining on the drive there, but the on ride we didn't get a single drop.
First 75 was good, last 25 was a little rough. A few 6-7 mile stretches of straight farm road against the wind.
Along the ride I was chased by farm dogs 3 times .
At mi 90 my feet felt pretty bad, but after 92 felt better. The last few miles the wind was behind us and cranked it in to the finish.

Thanks again for all of the replies.
Big assist from the weather--it was meant to be!
Always great when a tailwind times like that.

Congratulations!

Think you'll do it again next year?
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Old 10-04-21, 12:32 PM
  #100  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Big assist from the weather--it was meant to be!
Always great when a tailwind times like that.

Congratulations!

Think you'll do it again next year?
Most likely this same time next year I'll have moved to San Diego, so if I do another one it will be out there.
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