Long Distance Competition/Ultracycling, Randonneuring and Endurance Cycling Do you enjoy centuries, double centuries, brevets, randonnees, and 24-hour time trials? Share ride reports, and exchange training, equipment, and nutrition information specific to long distance cycling. This isn't for tours, this is for endurance events cycling

Double Century Advice wanted

Old 05-25-18, 04:05 PM
  #1  
billyymc
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 1,148
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 165 Post(s)
Liked 7 Times in 6 Posts
Double Century Advice wanted

So I did the 170 mile Cross Florida ride in early April, and I wish we'd ridden another 30 nice flat Florida miles because then I wouldn't be obsessing on riding a double century.

But I am, and I'm in upstate NY (Binghamton area), where it' isn't as flat as Florida.

So I want to attempt a double, and I other than trying to find as flat a route as possible I could use any advice you all can offer. My first attempt will probably be a solo, although I have one or two riders who have tentatively said they will attempt one in mid- August. I'd like to make an attempt earlier than that - say end of June. I'm in pretty good riding condition for me. I'll try to get a couple centuries in prior to the double attempt.

Again, I appreciate any advice on how to prep between now and end of June, as well as maybe things I might not expect for a solo ride of that length.

BTW, sorry if this is TMI, but after the Cross Florida I did experience a numb penis for perhaps 12 hours. I'm going to make adjustments to my saddle tilt to try and deal with that.
billyymc is offline  
Old 05-25-18, 08:09 PM
  #2  
ThermionicScott 
hungry
 
ThermionicScott's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: CID
Posts: 18,493

Bikes: 1991 Bianchi Eros, 1964 Armstrong, 1988 Diamondback Ascent, 1988 Bianchi Premio, 1987 Bianchi Sport SX, 1980s Raleigh mixte (hers)

Mentioned: 68 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2022 Post(s)
Liked 90 Times in 75 Posts
You could always sign up for a 400k (~248 mile) brevet, too. Then you'll have plenty of margin for that goal.

Re: the last point. Be sure to get out of the saddle every few miles, whether it's to climb a hill or just target different muscles. Numb things often result when you're just comfortable enough that it doesn't occur to you right away.
__________________
Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
Originally Posted by noglider
People in this forum are not typical.
RUSA #7498
ThermionicScott is online now  
Old 05-26-18, 10:34 AM
  #3  
kingston 
Jedi Master
 
kingston's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Lake Forest, IL
Posts: 2,637

Bikes: http://stinkston.blogspot.com/p/my-bikes.html

Mentioned: 28 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1078 Post(s)
Liked 18 Times in 15 Posts
I guess nobody has any advice since riding 200 miles will be pretty much like riding 170 miles. Seems like you've already got it covered.
kingston is offline  
Old 05-26-18, 11:45 AM
  #4  
Carbonfiberboy 
just another gosling
 
Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Everett, WA
Posts: 14,952

Bikes: CoMo Speedster 2003, Trek 5200, CAAD 9, Fred 2004

Mentioned: 86 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1781 Post(s)
Liked 33 Times in 27 Posts
Except this one will be hillier. Yeah, advice. Never bang your legs. Normally one might come up and power over little bumps. Don't do that. Gear down and spin everything, no matter how minor. Come out of the saddle on a schedule. I like every 10 minutes and set my Garmin alarm for that. Can't forget that way. You'll burn more calories in hills. Be ready for that, foodwise. If you use an HRM, set a HR limit and don't go over. Same if you use power. Same advice for anything hilly over 200k. The greater the distance, the lower the limits. Plan your stops in advance and keep them short. Try not to have to ride in the dark. If it's going to be hot, consider a Camelbak which will give you more range between stops and hopefully make hydration a non-issue.
__________________
Results matter
Carbonfiberboy is offline  
Old 05-26-18, 12:00 PM
  #5  
unterhausen
Randomhead
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Happy Valley, Pennsylvania
Posts: 18,238
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Liked 31 Times in 29 Posts
Heh, I wanted to ride 12 extra miles the first time I rode a 300km brevet to get over 200 miles. When I finished, there was no way I was going out to ride 12 miles.

Be careful drinking too much water without electrolytes, I recently figured out this was causing me a lot of problems at longer distances. I can basically fake it up to 400k with this problem, but I was DNF'ing 600km rides, and the 400km rides were not pretty. Imagine riding 250 miles while only eating enough to get you through 150 miles and you'll get the picture. There are a lot of riders that I suspect have the same problem, 400km seems to be the distance where it causes a lot of distress. I work on training myself to ride without eating enough, but it isn't fast.

One thing that will improve your time on a hilly course is to make sure you continue to push over the top of the climb until you are descending at a good rate. It's really easy to go slowly over the top of a climb when it gets easier. Especially if you are by yourself. Once I get tired, I really have to remind myself to keep the effort up a little.

Last edited by unterhausen; 05-26-18 at 02:33 PM.
unterhausen is offline  
Old 05-26-18, 07:37 PM
  #6  
billyymc
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 1,148
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 165 Post(s)
Liked 7 Times in 6 Posts
THanks guys - this is good, especially the reminder to get out of the saddle. I almost never do that, so I"m going to start working that into my shorter rides until it becomes a habit.

THe 170 mile Cross Florida ride was almost silly easy for a few reasons. First - flat. Florida is flat. The part people said would be hilly had maybe two short hills, and they were a relief after all the flat. Second the roads are SO smooth an well maintained. Very little to slow you down in terms of rolling resistance. Third, we rode almost the first half in a decent size pack - probably 50 or so riders. The strong guys at the front never cycled back to the back so never had to pull the entire first half.

My first attempt will be solo too, which for me will just be a lot harder mentally than riding with other people. Excited about it, but nervous, as my route takes me pretty far from any easy bailout options. So far I've been able to map out a route on ridewithgps with about 6k of climbing...that's the flattest I've been able to find. Not too bad really, and most of it comes in a couple big chunks where I'll have to drop down into a valley and then climb back out.
billyymc is offline  
Old 05-26-18, 07:40 PM
  #7  
billyymc
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 1,148
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 165 Post(s)
Liked 7 Times in 6 Posts
Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
If it's going to be hot, consider a Camelbak which will give you more range between stops and hopefully make hydration a non-issue.
I'll pass three of the Finger Lakes...plenty of water
billyymc is offline  
Old 05-26-18, 08:29 PM
  #8  
Spoonrobot 
Senior Member
 
Spoonrobot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 3,176
Mentioned: 55 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 984 Post(s)
Liked 25 Times in 21 Posts
Only thing I have to add is to ride like you normally ride.<br /><br />One of my first 200ks showed a route profile that included a lot more climbing that I had done before so I decided to put a larger cog on the rear and spin every climb to "save my legs." This turned into a disaster 90 miles into the ride as I started experiencing extreme cramping in my legs. I never cramp, as in I've never had a cramp while cycling, ever. I came extremely close to a DNF and ended losing significant time stopping to rest.<br /><br />I thought it might have been the weather but stopped riding like that anyway as it wasn't very fun. I'm a standing/sitting heavy muscle use climber and that works for me.<br /><br />What really convinced me that spinning is not a good thing if you don't do it a lot was talking to a racer after a gravel race with a lot of elevation. This was similar to the situation above, second time I ever had cramps since I spent a huge portion of the time sitting and spinning cause the gravel was so loose. Severe cramps and lots of lost time. I was talking with another racer afterwards and we got to thinking about how if your body is used to x amount of muscle contractions to ride up a hill if all the sudden you just randomly start doing x+100 contractions, even if they're less intense, it's going to have an effect. Especially when you do this dozens/hundreds of times over 10+ hours.<br /><br />So I would suggest to spin everything only if you're not already doing it or practice it on a regular basis.<br /><br />But now that I've typed all that I can see it's really just a specification of "don't try anything new on a long ride"

Last edited by Spoonrobot; 05-27-18 at 02:06 AM.
Spoonrobot is offline  
Old 05-26-18, 10:22 PM
  #9  
Happy Feet
Senior Member
 
Happy Feet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 3,219
Mentioned: 19 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1209 Post(s)
Liked 102 Times in 62 Posts
I agree you need to work up to spinning.

I spent last winter on a gym bike working on my cadence so that I could get used to spinning more for this season. Also did a lot of targeted resistance training to overcome a weak VMO that was causing knee pain from incorrect tracking. My previous cadence was something like 75-80, quite relaxed, and now I can do about 85-90ish and feel like I'm working but relaxed.

Just got back from a 3day, 14hour ride that covered 780km's (210, 275, 150, 145). Other than a bad case of saddle sores and some heat exhaustion from 95F temps I felt pretty good. Drank water regularly and milk and added one Gatorade type drink a day for electrolytes and forced myself to eat at regular intervals which I think was very beneficial. However, I have now eaten enough crappy gas station food to last me a good while.

I made it a point to gear down going up hills and not grind though I would stand and crank once in a while on flat sections to get circulation going in my butt yet still got some numbness in the groin area when down in the areo bar position for a long period. I attribute that to saddle position with a Brooks C17. It's either set optimal for the hoods but tilted a little high for the drops/aeros or optimal for the drops but a little down sloping for the hoods. I just choose which one I spend more time in and set for that.
Happy Feet is offline  
Old 06-02-18, 05:09 PM
  #10  
bikenh
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 1,195
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 107 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 2 Posts
For the penis issue, like others have said get out the saddle regularly...now no one else mentioned the easy way of doing this...climb more hills in a bigger gear. Force yourself to get out of the saddle by riding a bigger gear, even while climbing.

April 10, 2015 was my last 100 mile day until July 19, 2017. In between I had like six or seven times I rode 70-75 miles in a day only two in 2017. I went out on July 19th and rode 200 miles with around 9000 feet of climbing here in NH. Each of the next 4 Wednesday I rode another 200 miler. And finished off the weekly stretch on Friday the sixth week(no thanks to hitting a big pot hole at 30+mph which I somehow missed each of the previous 5 weeks on Wednesday, week 6, and instead rode the 200 miler on Friday after straighten up the wheel, still has flat spot on it). Other than a 'nutrition' issue on the second half of each of the 6 200 milers I had no trouble. The first 2 200 milers were ridden fixed gear 50x17...the first two 200 milers I had ridden.

One thing you will learn...once you know how to do it...you know how to do it, even if you take a long break from doing long rides you can go out and do them anytime you want, just ride how you know to ride and go with it.
bikenh is offline  
Old 06-02-18, 05:20 PM
  #11  
bluestacks867
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 28
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by billyymc View Post
Again, I appreciate any advice on how to prep between now and end of June, as well as maybe things I might not expect for a solo ride of that length.
You will probably find my similar post very helpful. Also my lessons learned and recap on page two.

One piece of advice that is not in that post:

My first 100 miles were rolling in Pennsylvania hills and my last 100 was pancake flat in Maryland / Delaware. I made the mistake of thinking flat is easier in a long distance event. Sure you do not want to be climbing mountains, but I actually prefer the rolling hills. After 10 hours in the saddle and finding yourself on pancake flat roads, there are not many opportunities to stand up and get your butt off the seat for a rest. When I ride in Pennsylvania I coast on all downhills in the aero position with my butt off the seat giving my butt and legs a short rest.

I realize you have limitations on picking your course and hills or flats, but just something to keep in mind.

Good luck, let us know how it goes.
bluestacks867 is offline  
Old 06-03-18, 09:30 AM
  #12  
Happy Feet
Senior Member
 
Happy Feet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 3,219
Mentioned: 19 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1209 Post(s)
Liked 102 Times in 62 Posts
When I am doing long distances I also stand or unweight the saddle on the downhills whenever I can. I shift up and stand and crank a bit if I'm on flat ground for a long time.

It's pretty easy to skip making changes in posture until discomfort begins because the body tends to just lock and settle but then I find I get quite numbed out and have to work extra hard to get rid of it. By creating a routine of changing position on a regular basis you can avoid most of that and only have to resolve minor issues. Same for rolling the shoulders once in while, stretching the neck and pulling up on the pedals (if you are clipless) to unweight the foot and wiggle the toes occasionally.
Happy Feet is offline  
Old 06-03-18, 01:11 PM
  #13  
83cannondale
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Milwaukee
Posts: 147

Bikes: 83 Cannondale, 70s Raleigh INternational, 70s Bob Jackson, 70s, Gitane tandem

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 65 Post(s)
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
For hills - Last year, on the first 600km I didn't dnf, toward the end I found walking the shorter, steeper hills gave a welcome change of muscle groups. My low gearing is 30-32 so I have the gearing to ride the hills, but doing a mental cost benefit calculation I decided to try walking a few. Felt pretty good and didn't lose too much time. In Wisconsin our hills probably aren't more than 1/4-1/2 mile long. Some grades 8% to 11%.

Otherwise, I take hills pretty slowly. Shift to a larger gear, up out of the seat, riding the drops, speed over the ground 6-10mph. Usinging "inchworm" technique where I can use well timed body weight shift and arm strength. The main focus being "save the legs". Very slow but I stay on the bike and minimize wear and tear on the guns.

Other wise, someone once said ride at the pace you expect to finish. Also being scientific about your eating and drinking. Shooting for 250-300 calories per hour, I've tried eating every 15 minutes. That works but may be excessive. Every half hour is probably fine. I go with real food for the most part.

Good luck - IMO, the hardest part is the mental bit.
83cannondale is offline  
Old 06-03-18, 01:54 PM
  #14  
CliffordK
Senior Member
 
CliffordK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Eugene, Oregon, USA
Posts: 22,463
Mentioned: 166 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8500 Post(s)
Liked 65 Times in 58 Posts
What about one of the canal trails?

You'll get a little extra rolling resistance if it is gravel, but perhaps not too bad. And, it should be pretty flat.

Make sure you can steer straight, and not into the canal after 200 miles.

But, otherwise, it should be a fun ride.
CliffordK is offline  
Old 06-03-18, 06:10 PM
  #15  
kingston 
Jedi Master
 
kingston's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Lake Forest, IL
Posts: 2,637

Bikes: http://stinkston.blogspot.com/p/my-bikes.html

Mentioned: 28 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1078 Post(s)
Liked 18 Times in 15 Posts
Originally Posted by 83cannondale View Post
...In Wisconsin our hills probably aren't more than 1/4-1/2 mile long. Some grades 8% to 11%...
While most of the hills are short like you say, we have Denzer Rd. on the 400k this Saturday. 2.8 miles with an average grade of 4.5% and a max of 8.9%. That's about as bad as it gets.
kingston is offline  
Old 06-04-18, 04:04 AM
  #16  
billyymc
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 1,148
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 165 Post(s)
Liked 7 Times in 6 Posts
Appreciate all the advice. I've been trying to force myself to get out of the saddle once in a while on my shorter rides. It's difficult for me simply because it's not my normal riding style. I spin up hills, even when they get steeper, and standing to push a higher gear on a hill still feel counter productive to me!

Was planning on a century yesterday but the weather shut me down. My planned route would have had me riding the entire second half directly into 12-16 mph wind, with intermittent rain. So I went mountain biking instead...not windy deep in the woods.

Getting ready for the 170 mile ride I did in April I primarily was riding the trainer from late Nov last year up through the beginning of March this year. I think I had just under 500 miles outside before I did that ride, with my longest ride being a blustery and relatively hilly 75 miler. I'd very much like to get one century in prior to attempting the double, but not sure that will happen given a busy schedule this month and my desire to try the ride on June 29.

I won't have much of a bailout option for my planned 200m route btw. The loop I have planned will have me as far away as 90-95 miles from home at the farthest point. If I fail I'll have to make the call of shame for a pickup by my daughter...ha.
billyymc is offline  
Old 06-04-18, 05:45 AM
  #17  
kingston 
Jedi Master
 
kingston's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Lake Forest, IL
Posts: 2,637

Bikes: http://stinkston.blogspot.com/p/my-bikes.html

Mentioned: 28 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1078 Post(s)
Liked 18 Times in 15 Posts
Originally Posted by billyymc View Post
...I'd very much like to get one century in prior to attempting the double, but not sure that will happen given a busy schedule this month and my desire to try the ride on June 29...
Riding long distances is a lot easier if you work your way up to it. I would definitely suggest getting in a 200k or at least 100 miles this weekend. Going from 75 to 200 miles is a big jump. I sometimes get up really early on Saturday, like 3 or 4, so I can get 100 miles in and still spend the afternoon with the family.
kingston is offline  
Old 06-04-18, 06:08 AM
  #18  
CliffordK
Senior Member
 
CliffordK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Eugene, Oregon, USA
Posts: 22,463
Mentioned: 166 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8500 Post(s)
Liked 65 Times in 58 Posts
Originally Posted by billyymc View Post
I won't have much of a bailout option for my planned 200m route btw. The loop I have planned will have me as far away as 90-95 miles from home at the farthest point. If I fail I'll have to make the call of shame for a pickup by my daughter...ha.
For my longer rides, I find it easiest to have a destination goal. I've tried to stop by home, rest for 15 minutes, then head back out again, I just can't do it.

Bring good lights, and enough clothing to keep you warm, dry, and safe, and just push through.
CliffordK is offline  
Old 06-04-18, 10:51 AM
  #19  
unterhausen
Randomhead
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Happy Valley, Pennsylvania
Posts: 18,238
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Liked 31 Times in 29 Posts
I have once again proven that anyone can ride 400km, I did it last thursday with a hurting knee. That is, if you don't care if it takes you 24 hours.
unterhausen is offline  
Old 08-25-18, 06:34 AM
  #20  
billyymc
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 1,148
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 165 Post(s)
Liked 7 Times in 6 Posts
Follow up on this.

I did my double yesterday, solo except for 15 miles where a friend met and pulled me.

203.4 miles, a little over 6k feet climbing, 11:50 moving time for about 17.2 mph average, total time with breaks of 13:12.

Had 20 miles directly into 15 mph winds which sucked and made me want to quit halfway through, then another 30-50 miles of windy but not as bad.

More than once in the last 30 miles I seriously wondered if I could rest my head on the aerobars and close my eyes for a few minutes.

Would not do it solo again, but would ride that distance with a few others to share the work.
billyymc is offline  
Old 08-25-18, 07:33 AM
  #21  
kingston 
Jedi Master
 
kingston's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Lake Forest, IL
Posts: 2,637

Bikes: http://stinkston.blogspot.com/p/my-bikes.html

Mentioned: 28 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1078 Post(s)
Liked 18 Times in 15 Posts
12 hours is a pretty respectable time for a solo double. You could slow down just a bit, and it would be a lot more comfortable.
kingston is offline  
Old 08-28-18, 10:13 AM
  #22  
OldTryGuy
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: SW Fl.
Posts: 4,384

Bikes: 1981 Custom Touring Paramount, 1983 Road Paramount, 2013 Giant Propel Advanced SL3, 2018 Specialized Red Roubaix Expert mech., 2002 Magna 7sp hybrid, 1976 Bassett Racing 45sp Cruiser

Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 649 Post(s)
Liked 32 Times in 25 Posts
Originally Posted by billyymc View Post
Follow up on this.

I did my double yesterday, solo except for 15 miles where a friend met and pulled me.

203.4 miles, a little over 6k feet climbing, 11:50 moving time for about 17.2 mph average, total time with breaks of 13:12.

Had 20 miles directly into 15 mph winds which sucked and made me want to quit halfway through, then another 30-50 miles of windy but not as bad.

More than once in the last 30 miles I seriously wondered if I could rest my head on the aerobars and close my eyes for a few minutes.

Would not do it solo again, but would ride that distance with a few others to share the work.
CONGRATULATIONS!!!! August 9th I did a solo 201 miles and definitely not going to be my last. Thinking about another Cross Florida next year and also Bike Sebring 12/24 Hour RAAM Qualifier. Will hold off on registration for Sebring until day before to see how I'm feeling. This year things were looking good for 350 miles BUT night before my right knee buckled so I had pain for all of my solo 266 miles. Very disappointed since I had to take extended breaks and wound up only riding about 20 hours of the 24.
OldTryGuy is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
danaconstance
Classic & Vintage
35
05-13-17 09:57 AM
dmanthree
Bicycle Mechanics
27
10-13-15 12:40 PM
brianinc-ville
Classic & Vintage
5
06-23-12 08:27 AM
JMT114
Road Cycling
12
11-01-07 10:52 AM
calben99
Classic & Vintage
14
09-08-06 04:59 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.