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a few "century" questions

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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

a few "century" questions

Old 01-05-06, 08:08 PM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by YATES
probably going to do the natchez trace, i won't be doin it for a while though.. prob in march or april.. too cold now.
What part of the Trace? There is another guy on here who I'm supposed to meet up with sometime this spring and do a Trace ride. Maybe we could get a small group and all do it together? What part of MS are you in? I think he is in Madison and I am here in Columbus...
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Old 01-05-06, 08:16 PM
  #27  
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what everyone else said....

research your route, and as much as possible stick to good, not-so-busy roads with generous shoulders....

make sure you are appropriately dressed and geared up - when you get past mile 70, just about any small issue will seem major....

in addition to the clif bars, power bars, powerade, etc., i go through about 4 gu gels - they give you a nice kick...

on my first solo century, i had an mp3 player that really helped morale toward the end (with the right music...)
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Old 01-05-06, 08:16 PM
  #28  
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I think the best way to do it is a well supported charity ride. See if there are any in your area in the next month. They have rest stops set up with food and beverage, at reasonable intervals. Additionally, just having alot of other people around, gives you more strength. You don't need to ride in a pack. If you just do a comfortable pace, there will be people around that are going the same speed.
Planning a 100 mile route can be difficult. Also there is the advantage of the SAG wagon if you have a problem.
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Old 01-05-06, 09:05 PM
  #29  
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If you've trained properly your biggest challenges are going to be mental - staying alert and keeping up a reasonable pace. Watch your cadence carefully and make sure you are pushing an appropriate gear for the situation. When fatigue sets in this is usually the first thing to go. Change hand positions frequently. Look around. Don't focus on the road too much or develop a death grip on the bars.

If you have a computer, consult it frequently to make sure you are sticking to your goal pace but don't beat yourself up too much if you slip a little. Riding 100 miles is an accomplishment in itself. Not many people at your job are going to ask how long it took you . Setting pace goals is just a way to keep yourself honest about your body's abilities. Going out too fast and finishing slow can be tough mentally. Set a goal pace, and stick to it as long as possible. If you're feeling good, go ahead a push it a little. If you have to slow down it's not the end of the world.

If you are doing this ride with friends you have trained with, keep your group together as much as possible. Along the ride, practice all the normal protocols of group riding. Call out when passing, don't draft people or join pacelines without asking.

I recommend being extra-conservative on descents. Hold your line, corner smoothly and predictably, and leave plenty of room between yourself and other riders. Descending is an art, and most people (myself included) are not that good at it. Factor in rural roads where the local drivers may not be on their best behavior around bicyclists and... Ok. Just be careful. That's all I'm saying

Make sure your bike is in top shape and that you're very familiar with the bike you plan to ride - how it shifts, how it handles, etc... Know how to fix a flat and do basic bike tweaking, and have the tools to do it.

Eat before you're hungry, drink before you're thirsty, and have fun!

Everyone's immune system is different, but unfortunately mine does not do well with alcohol after a hard effort. If you're going to celebrate after your big accomplishment, at least go easy - especially if you're going to do it before driving home!
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Old 01-05-06, 10:15 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by af2nr
What part of the Trace? There is another guy on here who I'm supposed to meet up with sometime this spring and do a Trace ride. Maybe we could get a small group and all do it together? What part of MS are you in? I think he is in Madison and I am here in Columbus...
I'm in Oxford. I found a group out of Tuscaloosa that is going to do the ride in March http://www.druidcity.org/rides.html
as you can see on that page, they are also doing a ride for Habitat for Humanity on April 9 i believe, and i might be more interested in doing that one, if not both. I e-mailed the guy and haven't gotten a response yet, but i'll let ya know how it goes.
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Old 01-06-06, 12:10 AM
  #31  
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If your previous long ride was 52 miles and that was painful you are really gonna hurt if you don't do more mileage. I do pretty well upping my longest ride 20 miles per week. If you get to 80 miles the week before the century you will find it much more enjoyable. Your rear end, back, neck, arms, legs all need time in the saddle to adjust and build up. I was amazed when 90 miles became comfortable.
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Old 01-06-06, 08:34 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by Hipcycler
By myself.
The thing about trying it with others is that I'd be worried that I might crap out on them and let them down. I'm really not sure I can do this, but I will be training toward making an attempt at it some time this summer.
Hip, this is where organized rides are fantastic. They aren't races and you can usually hook up with others throughout the ride as you either catch them, they catch you, or you meet up with them at rest stops along the way. I did my first 100 miler last September and showed up by myself. I never felt alone, though, as there were a ton of people riding. The miles flow by quickly when you are enjoying the people and scenery and not battling your cyclometer by staring at it on a solo ride.

The other thing on organized rides is that if you feel that you truly can't go the 100 miles, there are probably shorter routes (50, 62, 75, etc) that are part of the ride. The century is usually an additional loop off of the shorter routes, so you have time to decide on the ride, if needed.

I rode 30 miles with you earlier this year. You could easily handle 100 miles, especially with the regular stops along the way (usually 3 or 4 in a typical ride).

There are tons of organized rides throughout the summer. There are tons in Northeastern Illinois (ie, not far from you) that are relatively flat. I'll get a list of them for you. I did the www.applecidercentury.com in SW Michigan/NE Indiana last year. TONS of people out for that one and very well organized. I'm signed up again this year. It's October 1st this year.
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Old 01-06-06, 10:27 AM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by CardiacKid
I think the best way to do it is a well supported charity ride. See if there are any in your area in the next month. They have rest stops set up with food and beverage, at reasonable intervals. Additionally, just having alot of other people around, gives you more strength. You don't need to ride in a pack. If you just do a comfortable pace, there will be people around that are going the same speed.
Planning a 100 mile route can be difficult. Also there is the advantage of the SAG wagon if you have a problem.

i have to agree with this! go "organized" for your first! once you've done it... then do a solo (or small group) one that is planned!
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Old 01-06-06, 01:12 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by caligurl
i have to agree with this! go "organized" for your first! once you've done it... then do a solo (or small group) one that is planned!
yeah i had originally planned to do it solo with my girlfriend, but i think an organized event with official food stations and stuff would suit me much better
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Old 01-06-06, 02:48 PM
  #35  
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Thanks 97....
We'll see how the training for distance goes spring and into early summer. Maybe I'll be ready to try it in August....love that heat.
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Old 01-06-06, 04:59 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by YATES
I'm in Oxford. I found a group out of Tuscaloosa that is going to do the ride in March http://www.druidcity.org/rides.html
as you can see on that page, they are also doing a ride for Habitat for Humanity on April 9 i believe, and i might be more interested in doing that one, if not both. I e-mailed the guy and haven't gotten a response yet, but i'll let ya know how it goes.
Yeah I know that group and saw the Trace ride they have set up, it isn't going to be supported though. Of course there should be enough people and there are stops along the trace that it shouldn't be a problem. I plan on doing as many of the centuries they have as possible. They should email you back pretty soon, from my experience. Also if you and your girlfriend want to meet up on the Trace sometime and ride my wife and I would be up for that, her longest ride to date is 43 miles on a hybrid but she got a roadie for Xmas. PM me sometime and we can ride.
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Old 01-06-06, 05:15 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by af2nr
Yeah I know that group and saw the Trace ride they have set up, it isn't going to be supported though. Of course there should be enough people and there are stops along the trace that it shouldn't be a problem. I plan on doing as many of the centuries they have as possible. They should email you back pretty soon, from my experience. Also if you and your girlfriend want to meet up on the Trace sometime and ride my wife and I would be up for that, her longest ride to date is 43 miles on a hybrid but she got a roadie for Xmas. PM me sometime and we can ride.
alright sounds good
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Old 01-06-06, 05:50 PM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by caligurl
i'm normally a calorie counter.. the best advice given to me before i did my first century: don't worry about calories.... EAT! well.. i did! at each rest stop (it was an organized century) and i brought along the trail mix to eat on the bike if i wanted it! when i finished that century... i coulda gone longer.... further! i attribute it to eating (well... and having ridden before the ride.. but you know what i mean!)

i also use the rest stops as mini goals... ok... x amount of miles til the next food stop!
girls need to eat more now adays, they all look anorexic(sp)

Girls should excercise instead of watching what they eat
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Old 01-06-06, 07:06 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by af2nr
What part of the Trace? There is another guy on here who I'm supposed to meet up with sometime this spring and do a Trace ride. Maybe we could get a small group and all do it together? What part of MS are you in? I think he is in Madison and I am here in Columbus...
Count me in. I am only a couple of hours from much of the Trace in Tennessee.
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Old 01-07-06, 01:14 AM
  #40  
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You should consider the "Ride the Trace Century" that starts at Ridgeland north of Jackson and goes north to near Kosciusko and back. I believe it takes place in April. It's gently rolling, well staffed and very scenic. I did it a few years ago and it was my 1st century to average over 20 mph for 100 miles. The roadway is a little narrow when a big RV goes past but overall traffic is pretty light. All but about 20 miles had smooth pavement. They have a neat reception the night before at Indian Bikes and an awesome meal at the end looking out over Ross Barnett Reservoir. I'll probably do it again this year, Hope to see you there.--Rob--
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Old 01-07-06, 09:33 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by robhunterx
You should consider the "Ride the Trace Century" that starts at Ridgeland north of Jackson and goes north to near Kosciusko and back. I believe it takes place in April. It's gently rolling, well staffed and very scenic. I did it a few years ago and it was my 1st century to average over 20 mph for 100 miles. The roadway is a little narrow when a big RV goes past but overall traffic is pretty light. All but about 20 miles had smooth pavement. They have a neat reception the night before at Indian Bikes and an awesome meal at the end looking out over Ross Barnett Reservoir. I'll probably do it again this year, Hope to see you there.--Rob--

thanks for the info rob, i was actually looking into doin this one.. when you did it last year, approximately how many participants were in it and what was the entry fee?
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Old 01-07-06, 04:04 PM
  #42  
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I thought about this for a while, then just did it. Basically bring whatever you normally bring (tire change, water bottles), plus food (peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for me), money, a cell phone just in case, and a map so you don't get lost (you will anyway). It is just a long bike ride, and you don't need to be terribly scientific. You'll get tired and make some mistakes... so take what you learned and do it again the next week.
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