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Logging My First Ultracycling Race (and preparation), Bentang Jawa

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Logging My First Ultracycling Race (and preparation), Bentang Jawa

Old 07-07-24, 06:53 AM
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Logging My First Ultracycling Race (and preparation), Bentang Jawa

I would say I am not new to long distance cycling. My first one was back in 2022, cycling from Surabaya city to Jakarta which spans over 1000km with only 5000m elevation gain.
I spent 7 days on the road, because there was no cut off time for the ride. It was not a race.

Now, I have submitted myself to join : Bentang Jawa, my first ultracycling race. The race in the previous years spans over 1400km with 11.350m elevation gain and has a cut-off time of 7 days. So there is a pretty big difference from what I have done back in 2022. For reference: Bentang Jawa

In this thread, I would like to share my trainings, bike prep, and have feedback and maybe some tips on finishing this!
The Setup
Bike frame: Engine 11 Crit D Road
GS: Ultegra R8000
Gear Setup: (Crank) 50-34; (Cassette) 11-34
Wheelset: Enve SES 3.4 700c, Chrisking hubsets, Panaracer TLR 28c
Cockpit: Enve SES aerobars with clip on (now I know this is a wrong setup!)

The race will start in 11th of August '24 and I don't think I will buy a gravel frameset for this occasion. But, for the sake of comfortability, this aero clip-on bars sucks. Fool of me not looking reference before the purchase because it resulted in a too sporty position, and my back screams. Instead, I will change my aero handlebar with PRO LT gravel bar and borrow my friend's Profile Design clip on that has risers to make my ride comfortable.
As for the packs, I will use three bags: (1) Topeak saddle 9L; (2) frame bag; (3) top tube bag; and (4) a stem feed bottle bag.

I have been practicing for it since the announcement of list of participants came out in May. But it is quite hard to spare some time due to my work requires me to be present at the office from 8am-6pm. Not to mention commuting in Jakarta (Indonesia) is a time consuming routine. So for the trainings, I have been running at dawn and long ride will happen on Sundays.

Started from 6kms of running per day, 5 times a week. Now I have no issue running 15k, 4 times a week with no hydration nor supplements prior to the run. Last run was 27k (400m elev gain) and I have not feeling any overly exhaustion post running.

However, long rides were still quite a challenge for me. I feel harsh climbs is very hard to be ridden! My last two rides: 165km with 1780m elev gain and the week after was 137km with 1808m elev gain.

Other than more long rides, do you have any tips for workout that can increase my capability in nailing high climbs?

In this race, it requires participants to have 2 front lights and 2 backlights. Both when not used as spares. Does anyone have good testimonials with Cateye lamps for ultra-cycling? If yes, what type is recommended?

Thank you!
Later, I will provide better pictures of my setup
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Old 07-07-24, 11:54 AM
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Good luck, looks like quite a ride. Am I understanding correctly that there is a significant amount of gravel? I know a lot of randonneurs use cateye rear lights. I don't know about headlights.
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Old 07-13-24, 06:00 AM
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Hello. I just recently thought to read some of the posts on BikeForums and I came across your post to which I am replyiing.Seems like your ultra-distance cycling challenge will be here in about a month. Good luck!

I did not read your post in depth. But I think I got the main points. I was confused that your preparation involves regular runs instead of as many miles on the bike as you can do. I would cut out the runs and substitute them with indoor workouts on your bike using a "trainer device" that you can clip your road bike into. CLICK HERE to see an image of what I'm talking about. I have one made by CycleOps. You should be able to get sufficient riding time after work in your home on one of these during the week. And then on weekends go for a progressively longer ride. Normally with several months to work with you would do 4 or 5 weeks of a 100k ride each weekend. Then move to doing 2 or 3 200k rides on the next three weekends. Then move to doing two 400k rides oover the next two weekends. And finally do a 600k ride on a weekend making sure to take a 3 hour rest stop after completing 400k of that 600k ride.

The time limits for the rides are: 6.5 hours for the 100k rides. 13.5 hours for the 200k rides. 20 hours for the 300k rides. 27 hours for the 400k rides. And 40 hours for the 600k rides. If you cannot meet the time limits, then you need to stay at that distance where you failed until you do meet the time limit.. Then move on. You will probably want to ride on the indoor trainer 3 or 4 times a week for 1.5 to 2 hours each. One of the rides can be shorter than that, but with a higher intensity.

The big flag in your post that raised concern for me was when you said last year you did a 1000k ride in seven (7) days. Normally 1000k ride has a time limit of 75 hours. And usually a somewhat trained long distance bike rider can complete them in 63 to 67 hours. I have a feeling you are not going to do well in a month. But there is always next year.

I highly recommend you get a generator hub for your bike's front wheel. These are sometimes called dyno hubs. And get a headlight with max brightness that will work of the dyno hub. The tail light can work off batteries since they don't drain batteries fast. But the headlight must work off the dyno hub. I cannot say enough positive things about the Garmin eTrex when it comes to navigating your ride. It's a GPS device. You will attach it to your handlebars. Batteries for the eTrex and taillights should all be rechargeable. Bring spare batteries.

Ideally if you want to complete this ride coming up, then you should be able to ride a 200k in somewhere around 10 hours. A 300k somewhere between 14 and 15 hours. A 400k somewhere between 19 and 20 hours. And a 600k in less than 37 hours. These time limits are not etched in stone. But they definitely are a good guide.

CLICK HERE to see what a dyno hub looks like. You can get on for a little over $100 that Shimano makes. But these can get quite expensive. They are worth their weight in gold for a long bike ride.

CLICK HERE to see what a Garmin eTrex looks like. The significance of the eTrex is the batteries can be switched out as they go dead. This device is designed for hiking. But it works well for long distance bike rides. They can be pricey. But they are well worth it. Just follow the breadcrumb trail.
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Old 07-14-24, 06:49 AM
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THREAD STARTER said: I would say I am not new to long distance cycling. My first one was back in 2022, cycling from Surabaya city to Jakarta which spans over 1000km with only 5000m elevation gain.

Is this the route at RWGPS? See Bentang Jawa.

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