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Training & Nutrition Learn how to develop a training schedule that's good for you. What should you eat and drink on your ride? Learn everything you need to know about training and nutrition here.

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Old 06-26-11, 02:42 PM   #1
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Need training advice - training for 150 mile ride

I am new in the world of long distance rides. I recently bought myself a road bike Dolce Specialized) and have just started riding. I am needing advice on how to appropriately train myself without hurting myself. How often should I ride and for how long? Should I focus on my speed right now or should I just focus on distance? Is there some literature out there or website that I can use as a guide?
I am planning on riding in the Bike Around the Bay in mid October. Is it possible to start now and be ready in time?
Please help!
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Old 06-26-11, 06:51 PM   #2
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This book is the best I have read for beginner to intermediate endurance cyclists:

How easily you can do the event depends on how fit you are now and how much you can train between now and the event.

I'd recommend doing shorter faster rides during the week and a long distance slower ride on the weekend. I'm not a big fan of intervals for non-racers but if you get motivated by and enjoy a more structured training there's nothing wrong with it. But if you don't have any base then pretty much any riding will result in an improvement.

No one can tell you how much you should be riding because we don't know how fit you are or how well you recover. No one but you knows that. The basic training principle is to cause stress then rest. You need both to improve. Many racers work on a weekly cycle and then a macro cycle of 2-5 weeks. Each week in the macro cycle builds up stress and then you take a "rest week" (which isn't an entire week with no riding) to recover. Then start the next cycle.

If you need a plan with numbers the Bicycling Magazine century training plan has worked for a lot of people.
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Old 06-26-11, 08:54 PM   #3
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Barring any medical problems it's probably possible. I went from obese in April of last year to a century ride in september ( as well as dieting and losing 40 pounds ). I rode nearly daily and put in over 2000 miles during 2010, so I'm not going to say my path was easy by any stretch.
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Old 06-26-11, 09:35 PM   #4
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Besides what the previous comments have said (all good) it's a matter of developing the mileage, to which Brontide alludes. In general, a rider can accomplish a single ride equal in length to their total weekly mileage for the previous few weeks, not counting the taper week before the big ride. So for a 150 mile ride, one would want to have done maybe three 150 mile weeks. That's just to finish, even though it might not be pretty. To have a strong ride, a little more mileage is necessary. Your first year, I wouldn't try to exceed 200 mile weeks. That's a lot of riding. It should be spread out like Eric says. Conventional wisdom says not to increase the length of your longest ride nor your total weekly mileage more than 10%. Since that's compound interest it adds up quite quickly.

After you google the Bicycling century training plan and google century training plan, you'll have a good idea what these things look like. Then devise your own plan around the days you can ride, using the training plans' ideas and possibly the mileage estimates I've made here. You should probably ride a century or two in training, just to get your nutrition and hydration figured out. Those two things are much the hardest. The strength and endurance aren't much of a problem, really. It's staying fed and hydrated that cause the biggest problems for most people.

Two equipment problems people have are not being able to do that much saddle time and bike fit. Riding sometimes fixes the saddle problem, but frequently it's necessary to find the magic saddle that fits your anatomy. The second equipment problem is getting the bicycle adjusted so that the rider is comfortable enough to stay on it the required length of time without developing some sort of repetitive stress injury (RSI). A bike shop and/or other experienced riders can help with both these things.
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