go longer or go more often?

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by bulaboy, May 18, 2010.

  1. bulaboy

    bulaboy New Member

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    I'll be doing my first century in just over 2 weeks time. I feel like I will be ready. I've been averaging 165 miles/week for the past 10 weeks, closer to 190 the last month. I usually ride 4 or 5 days per week. I've done a couple rides of 80 miles, half a dozen or so of around 60 miles and lots of 40 milers. In mid July though I'm doing a 200K brevet in Wisconsin that will be much tougher - longer (obviously) and hillier. So here's my question: In order to prepare for the brevet would it be better to ride more often say 5 days a week or ride 4 days a week and include more long rides? Say I had a week where I did 3 rides of 30 miles and 2 rides of 60 miles vs. a week where I only rode 4 times but did 2 rides of 25 miles and 2 rides of 80 miles? Either way it would be 210 miles. Which is better preparation?

    Thanks
     
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  2. mymilkexpired

    mymilkexpired New Member

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    For the 100 miler you will be fine. The 200KM ride is not much more than your century ride. If you can do 90-100 miles, the 200KM shouldn't be an issue. You'll probably be fine, get a couple of higher mileage rides in beforehand and eat right.

    I would continue your 5 day week ride, get 2 or 3 long rides in and use the other days for shorter 'pace' rides for an active recovery. You may also want to spend a portion of your longer ride time in a higher gear to give you some simulated load like climbing if you don't normally have these challenges in your daily riding.
     
  3. jhuskey

    jhuskey Moderator

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    Sounds like you will be fine. If you can ride 80% of the distance training at 80% of what this ride will require and do ok you will be fine especially if you are now riding solo since you can conserve a lot of power and energy in a group.
     
  4. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    If you're comfortable with 80 miles then either training schedule would work but I'd edge more towards 4 days and doing those days harder rather than longer. Most of the guys that do the RAAM rarely train over 5 hours.

    The brevet in July is a bit longer and hillier which shouldn't be a problem. Just adjust your pace accordingly and just go slightly easier. The hillier part is the key here - and if you have a powermeter this part is easy - keep your effort the same going uphills as you do on the flat and just as importantly keep your effort the same of the downhills too. Gear down for the climbs and you'll be fine. Keeping the effort up on the downhills keeps the pace nice and high and will stop your legs feeling 'dead' towards the end of the ride.

    If you're honking of using the drinks/food provided by the ride organizers it would be worthwhile to have a long ride in training eating those same foods. Normally this info will be on the website - if not drop them a quick email. I discovered, 7500ft up a mountain that me and cytomax weren't good riding buddies in hot weather... 30 minutes spraying the walls in a very hot porta potty ensued. You get the idea ;)
     
  5. bulaboy

    bulaboy New Member

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    I appreciate your feedback.

    I signed up for these rides to motivate myself, and it's helped keep me focused and also got me doing longer rides instead of the usual short (40 - 50 mile) and fast groupies my club does, but now I'm worried about being prepared for these longer events. There is no support on the brevet so I'll feel a whole lot better if I can be overprepared. Pacing will be key as you guys have said. I usually ride with a group that goes a bit faster than I do and so I tend to push too hard on longer solo rides. Then there is the trade off between intensity and distance. As I keep increasing my milage I have to control the intensity. Are high intensity middle distance rides just as good as longer rides done more slowly? It helps to talk about it. Maybe I just worry too much.

    Thanks for your responses.
     
  6. tspek

    tspek New Member

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    Ride longer. Give your body time to recover.

    Read more:
    Joe Friel's Blog: Easy Means Easy
     
  7. bulaboy

    bulaboy New Member

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    The ride is 2 weeks away and I'm ready. Did another 80 mile ride Saturday and followed up with a 63 mile ride yesterday. I think the heavy lifting is over. The best way for me to screw this up now is to do too much. I want to go into the ride fresh. I'll do a few 40 - 60 mile rides but because my overall milage will be dropping I can push the pace more. I'm feeling confident. Thank you all for your input.
     
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