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Cycling Challenges!!

Old 01-25-04, 10:05 PM
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Cycling Challenges!!

Since it doesn't look likely for me to be able to do a century-a-month this year because of the thick, slippery layer of ice all over the streets here, I've been exploring the idea of a couple other challenges.

1. A 1000 mile week - this would be any consecutive 7-day period of time, your choice. You divide the mileage evenly over the 7 days (143 miles a day) or you could do more on any of the days and less on some others. You could chose a vacation week, or a regular work-week.
My longest week so far is 860 miles . . . so hopefully 1000 miles won't be too much of a stretch.

2. A 3000 mile month - this would be any month of the year, your choice. You could divide the mileage evenly over the 29-31 days of the month you choose, or you could have a heavy week, and lighter weeks. I'm thinking of May, July, August, or October simply because they have 31 days, and are in the nicest times of the year.
My longest month so far is about 1500 miles so 3000 would be double that.

3. 24 centuries for 2004 - it wouldn't matter what months you do these in. You could do 24 centuries all in one month if you liked, or you could spread them out evenly over all 12 months of the year. When I say "century" I mean 100 miles, and I mean 100 miles "all at once", done within a 24 hour period of time, preferably with only short breaks, if any at all. These would also be centuries done outside - NOT on a trainer or in a velodrome.
I did 29 centuries (or longer rides) last year, so I'll definitely be aiming for this goal this year.

What do you think? Anyone up for any of these challenges?
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Old 01-25-04, 11:21 PM
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Put me down for #3. If our weather actually cools down a little at any stage this year -- I might have a crack at 1 & 2 as well.
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Old 01-28-04, 08:31 AM
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I don't always go for these challenges, they start seeming like work. I don't like work, biking is suppose to be fun and my outlet for a hard day at work. Maybe it is the chest cold bubbling away in my chest that has me scrunching up my nose at this challenge. But looking at my numbers from last year, they are doable. I just don't want to put myself down for it yet. I am not going to get a century in this month either, so that's out.
Now, if you could challenge me to strange noises made with your lungs, I might have something to say.
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Old 01-28-04, 10:33 AM
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Wow. The cycling challenges this year have REALLY ramped up. I really enjoyed the three challenges I did last year. But so far, all the challenges I've seen here are really beyond me, my endurance, and my available time, not to mention the weather issues.

Maybe someone could come up with a challenge for us non-Randonneuring types that typically only do between 1000 and 6000 miles per year total. I really enjoyed the so-many-miles in so-and-so-days type challenge, or the Ride form Perth-to-Melbourne challenge, and especially the TdF Challenge.
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Old 01-28-04, 06:21 PM
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Machka, you must pee blood!



Put me down for #3. I don't know if I'll be able to do it, but I think I can. I'll beg my 'nether regions for forgiveness come Dec. 2004.

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Old 01-28-04, 09:26 PM
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Originally Posted by P. B. Walker
Maybe someone could come up with a challenge for us non-Randonneuring types that typically only do between 1000 and 6000 miles per year total. I really enjoyed the so-many-miles in so-and-so-days type challenge, or the Ride form Perth-to-Melbourne challenge, and especially the TdF Challenge.
PB, those will start again in a couple of months - when those in regions with conditions that prevent them from riding can do so again. If I posted one of those now, I suspect the general response would be similar to the century-a-month challenge (i.e. can't do it, covered in snow etc etc).

I hope you don't mind if the first is a little self-indulgent?
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Old 01-29-04, 02:20 AM
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First of all I will be getting a new bike within a few weeks (crosses fingers) and will be getting used to that before piling on some k's.

Ok challenge 1: Personally I do not have the time. Also..what is the point? I am still new to the racing side of things, and I could risk blowing myself out before the season even gets going.
1600km or 230km/day is just too much for me.
I will be looking at some long weeks in the region of perhaps 700km.

2: once again what is the point? it is more than a challenge to many. It is brutal. I am looking at perhaps an 870Mi month, thats 350km/week, give or take. I put in a fair amount of speed work, so this lowers my possible total mileage.

24 centuries: Once i am used to my new bike after I get it, I am hoping to do 40 metrics and 12 imperials in the next 52 weeks(or year, however you look at it), so basically an imperial each month and all the other weekends are metrics. This could be mucked up with racing programmes and such though, and school work.

Brendon
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Old 01-29-04, 09:28 AM
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I would enjoy joining a challenge, but the miles that you roadies are putting in do not go along with my personal goals. About 40-50% of my miles are on singletrack and depending on the trail a mile off road equals the effort of 2-3 miles on the road. I might post something like this in the mountain bike section, or see if a more moderate road bike challenge pops up.
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Old 01-29-04, 10:20 AM
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wait a minute..

why does riding on a velodrome not count?
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Old 01-29-04, 12:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Chris L
PB, those will start again in a couple of months - when those in regions with conditions that prevent them from riding can do so again. If I posted one of those now, I suspect the general response would be similar to the century-a-month challenge (i.e. can't do it, covered in snow etc etc).

I hope you don't mind if the first is a little self-indulgent?

Sounds good to me. We just got socked with some snow and ice earlier this week, so I've been jogging instead. Hopefully, I'll be able to ride tomorrow since the temps are up into the 30's now and maybe some of this snow and ice will clear off.

We're just getting into the worst part of our winter here. So waiting until March to put up some uhmm... "less killer" type challenges works well for me.
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Old 01-29-04, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by fore
wait a minute..

why does riding on a velodrome not count?
'Cause half the fun is experiencing the weather challenges!
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Old 01-29-04, 12:55 PM
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my local velodrome is an outdoor 'drome.
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Old 01-29-04, 01:23 PM
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1000 mile weeks, 3000 mile months, or 24 centuries a year? Geez, how do people do that?

I've been riding for almost two years (I'm 54) and have done a total of two centuries and had to force myself to finish those! I can't imagine going out the next day and doing it all again.

Heck, I have enough trouble just putting up with the feel of the bike shorts on a normal 26 mile day!

Bob
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Old 01-29-04, 02:52 PM
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Originally Posted by TheRCF
1000 mile weeks, 3000 mile months, or 24 centuries a year? Geez, how do people do that?

I've been riding for almost two years (I'm 54) and have done a total of two centuries and had to force myself to finish those! I can't imagine going out the next day and doing it all again.

Heck, I have enough trouble just putting up with the feel of the bike shorts on a normal 26 mile day!

Bob
You're still just getting into it. The more distance you do, the easier it feels. After I completed my first century in 1994 I vowed I would never do another one. I've gone on to do more than 50 of them.

I did 29 of those 50+ centuries (or longer rides like 200 kms, and double centuries) last year, so I'm definitely going for 24 centuries, this year. In fact, I'd like to aim for 36, but I'll leave the goal at 24 for now.

A friend of mine who has done at least a couple 1000+ mile weeks suggested the 1000 mile week challenge to me, and as I said, I've done a 860 mile one already. If I do the 1000 mile challenge (and I'd like to), I'll probably combine it with my 1000 km and/or 1200 km brevet.

The 3000 mile month might be a bit of a reach for me, but if I combine it with that 1000 mile week, then I've only got 2000 miles to distribute over 3 weeks.

I'm not a racer. I'm not fast. I'm also not a mtn biker. But I am a long distance road rider (and a Randonneur) who loves being on her bicycle for long, long, long distances. So, as a long distance road rider, these types of challenges really appeal to me ... probably in a similar way as winning races appeals to racers. It's just a different aspect of the sport of cycling!
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Old 01-29-04, 03:32 PM
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True, I'm new to it (I've been told it takes 10 years to really get strong), but I've been in a rut for a long time now - last record speed for my normal ride to Waikiki (13 miles one-way) is 18.05 mph and that was set LAST MARCH! I haven't gotten closer than 17.75 since and that was only once.

I can't complain, I guess, since I originally thought an average of 15 mph was probably beyond my best effort, but now I really would like to hit 19 because if I could do that, my more normal efforts would probably improve too.

Bob
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Old 01-29-04, 04:34 PM
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Originally Posted by TheRCF
True, I'm new to it (I've been told it takes 10 years to really get strong), but I've been in a rut for a long time now - last record speed for my normal ride to Waikiki (13 miles one-way) is 18.05 mph and that was set LAST MARCH! I haven't gotten closer than 17.75 since and that was only once.

I can't complain, I guess, since I originally thought an average of 15 mph was probably beyond my best effort, but now I really would like to hit 19 because if I could do that, my more normal efforts would probably improve too.

Bob
You should give some distances a try then - work on increasing your comfortable distance over the next month or two, and then see how your speed is. Although I'm just not fast, my speed has increased since I started Randonneuring!
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Old 01-29-04, 05:55 PM
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Training

Originally Posted by Machka
You should give some distances a try then - work on increasing your comfortable distance over the next month or two, and then see how your speed is. Although I'm just not fast, my speed has increased since I started Randonneuring!
I've done some other distances, but I find it hard to ride just to ride. Going to Waikiki isn't a problem because I'm at least going down there to eat breakfast at a beachfront resturant (I ride real early) and often to spend time at the beach. Once I get past Waikiki, I'm no longer really going anyplace. THat just makes it hard for me to get myself to do it.

How fast do you average on a century? My first one was 11.9 mph (not counting lots of time resting or eating). The second one was slower, but that was because I did it by circling the island - that made the last 20 miles over some really tough hills.

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Old 01-30-04, 01:10 AM
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Originally Posted by TheRCF
I've done some other distances, but I find it hard to ride just to ride. Going to Waikiki isn't a problem because I'm at least going down there to eat breakfast at a beachfront resturant (I ride real early) and often to spend time at the beach. Once I get past Waikiki, I'm no longer really going anyplace. THat just makes it hard for me to get myself to do it.

How fast do you average on a century? My first one was 11.9 mph (not counting lots of time resting or eating). The second one was slower, but that was because I did it by circling the island - that made the last 20 miles over some really tough hills.

Bob
Have you checked out your local cycling organizations? Sometimes its easier to do distances if you're with other people.

http://www.hawaiicyclingclub.com

I believe you also mentioned that you weren't comfortable in your shorts for very long - I can stay in the same pair of shorts for a full 48 or more hours (on my longer Randonneuring brevets) and be comfortable. If you really are uncomfortable, you need to look for a better pair of shorts.

As for going places, here in Manitoba, there isn't much at all. But what I do is to pick a spot on the map, plan a route and cycle there. It's flat and boring, but I try to pick places, even just small dots of towns, where I haven't been before. I can say I've been in or through most of the small towns in southern Manitoba now! I treat it just as if I'm touring Europe and not just my own province. I chat with the locals, look at whatever they might have for tourist attractions, and so on.

My "usual" relaxed century takes me 8 hours (12.5 mph) including breaks. As I said, it's really flat here, but there's almost always a wind to contend with. My fastest century is 6 hours, and my longest was just over 15 hours, last February when the starting temperature was -32C/-25F and high for the day was -25C/-11F. That was a long, cold century!! So it varies a bit. But as I also said earlier, my speed has picked up with the longer distances I do. This year was my fastest year out there on all my brevets.
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Old 01-30-04, 01:35 AM
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OK.....put me down for #2 for the month of July. I'll just tag along the peloton of Tour de France.

George
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Old 01-30-04, 07:02 AM
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I have 3 different kinds of shorts - I can wear them for quite a while, but just not be comfortable with them.

> My "usual" relaxed century takes me 8 hours (12.5 mph) including breaks. <

I have hills - and wind. My last one took me 11.5 hours total. A bit over 9 hours I think of riding.

I find that no matter how I start out riding, even on my usual ride to Waikiki, I do lose energy fairly quickly. If I push really hard trying to get a run averaging over 17 mph, the last half of the trip is hard to stay above 15 mph. But what is weird to me is when I take it easy. Like yesterday I just took it easy. Got done the hill section at 13.2 mph which I was pleased with, yet over the last 6 miles, I still was slowing way down. Part was the wind, but I didn't seem to have the energy I would expect from taking it easy earlier. I would think riding casually like I was that I could maintain it much longer.

Bob
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Old 02-01-04, 10:32 AM
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biggest challenge for some... including me would to be just to get on the bike.
yes there are days like these

however.. riding on ice is not something i like doing, but have done it.. gingerly with a road bike... gleefully on my mtn bike.. 360s on a lake are something "everyone "has to try!

i have done a 1,000 mile week, put me out of commision for a while.. really the first time i did not even want to touch my bike. interesting week tho
wouldn't do it again unless it was a charity ride.


24 centuries in a year.. yeah i believe a lot of ppl can do that.. provided the weather or injuries can't stop them. i am working out with weights/ running and more cross training than actual riding these days to be ready for some AR challenges in the fall. done two centuries last month but i don't care if i don't do any more for a while.

challenge yourself everyweek to try something different while riding or cross training. to me that would keep the rides entertaining and you get a heck of a lot of workouts in
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Old 02-01-04, 09:14 PM
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Just got my second century in consecutive weeks (or consecutive months, depending on how you look at it), in probably the most oppressive conditions I'll ride in this year. Temperatures hitting 40 C at one point on the ride, still 37C on the coast. I was even glad when a truck driver tried (and failed) to squeeze me against a kerb -- I appreciated the shade!

A few other quirks out there, too. I saw a possum at one point, big surprise as they only come out at night normally. I even resisted the temptation to run over it in a revenge gesture!
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Old 02-04-04, 07:04 AM
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well, as Mike OK has said, on the mountain bike it is not MILES that count... a somewhat useful statistic and what i use to guage the amount of riding i do is VERTICAL climbed; 100 flat miles is easier and can be done more quickly than 40 miles with 2000 meters vertical (6,600 ft) ---- although even vertical does not tell the whole story as climbing and descending a fireroad you can accumulate miles and vertical more than twice as easily as on a technical singletrail (my favorite kind of riding!)

in 2002 i logged 65,000 meters vertical (215,000ft) over about 10,000km (6200 miles) -- about half road/commuting, the rest mountain biking of which about half was technical singletrail

in 2003 i logged 80,000 meters vertical (264,000ft) over about 9,000km (5600 miles) -about 1/3 road/commuting

for 2004 i think i will easily beat the 80,000: just from my 5 big planned events (2 8-day Transalps and 3 single-day races) i will have 45,000 meters, plus all my training to be fit enough to do these... i think 2004 i will ride between 85,000 and 100,000 meters vertical!

but yeah, even in my BIG races that take 5-7 hours I have never logged over 120km (75 miles) and rarely over 110km (69 miles) - although races like the Lake Garda Extreme Marathon MTB race have 3600m (11,500 ft) over 105km (65 miles) --- the top pro finished last year in 4:45, with a broken pedal i finshed in 7:10 and would have finished under 6:45 without the mechanical...

anyway, so centuries will not be in my "Challenges" for the year, although i like the "feel" of the thread.

my big challenge for 2004: the TransAlp Challenge July 17-24 which is an 8-day 2-person-team MTB stage race from Germany to Italy with a total of 22,000 meters vertical (73,000 ft in 8 days!!!) -- i am riding with me girlfriend in the Mixed category and we officially started our training this week! my girlfriend is also incredibly fit and motivated although i plan on using a bungy cord to pull her so we can go as fast as possible.

but i think the TransAlp Challenge is comparable to any of the goals here: 8 days in a row of 5-9 hours on the bike with the "easy" days having *only* 2500 meters of climbing (8250ft)
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Old 02-05-04, 09:25 AM
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Originally Posted by nathank
for 2004 i think i will easily beat the 80,000: just from my 5 big planned events (2 8-day Transalps and 3 single-day races) i will have 45,000 meters, plus all my training to be fit enough to do these... i think 2004 i will ride between 85,000 and 100,000 meters vertical!
Man that's a lot of climbing! You might have an idea there though, a off road challenge with either vertical or maybe even hours as the goal. I have one ride that I do about once a month that is about 22 miles and 6000' total climbing, that one's a killer!

It might be hard to do a total climbing thing as a challenge though, since if you're like me you have lots of places you ride and it would be hard to be accurate, some of mine I would just have to estimate unless you have another idea? A total time would be easy and a fairly accurate way to judge effort. Maybe we could get Clint to figure out a way for us to enter our mtn bike miles (or hours, or feet climbed)seperately under our user names for this challenge?

I do like the feet climbed idea though since that's my weak point and my HR days are the ones I'm most likely to change at the last minute...
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Old 02-05-04, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by MikeOK
It might be hard to do a total climbing thing as a challenge though, since if you're like me you have lots of places you ride and it would be hard to be accurate, some of mine I would just have to estimate unless you have another idea?
i currently have a CicloSport CM414 which VERY accurately tracks vertical climbed. it also has a computer download which is cool.

last year someone gave me an old Ciclo Hac4 which is even better with integrated HR monitor, but it's kind of broken now... i was contemplating trying to get it fixed, but i also don't have the computer connection, so i think i will just buy a new one --- or i might get the Polar S710i which also has about the same functionality. in the past i also had a Specialized Pro that also tracked vertical well (lost it on a downhill) --- i also have a Cateye with altimeter, but the accumulated vertical is very error heavy...

but yeah, vertical climbed per my cycle computers is my biggest stat -- unfortunately my 3 computer on various bikes were all not working at some point end of 2003 and i don't have a new one/holder for my new Rocky Mountain Slayer (my Freeride bike)
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