I want to try a Century.



MotownBikeBoy

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Nov 24, 2012
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I think I will try it on my birthday, in a couple of weeks, on a Sunday. I figure if I give myself a good 20 hours total including rests and lunch I should be good. Probably leave about 4 in the morning. I think I'll just do the local trails so I am not too far from home. Think I can do it?
 
Originally Posted by MotownBikeBoy .

...Think I can do it?
Having never met you and knowing nothing about your riding I'd still say yes you can likely do it and in a lot less than 20 hours.

Lot's of folks ride their first century every year and many first timers finish in half the time or less of what you've laid out. Really can you ride 10 mph and just keep doing it if you feed yourself and keep yourself reasonably hydrated? Boring perhaps, but not out of the question for most healthy adults that ride their bikes fairly often.

If you can hold say 15 mph for a single hour you can likely hold 12 or so for 8 hours of riding and then throw in another hour or two of assorted rest stops, bathroom breaks and some stops to eat and refill bottles for a ten hour day. Take it a bit slower and stop for some sit down meals and you'll still likely finish in 11 or 12 hours. FWIW, it's best not to make your stops too long as starting up again, especially late in the day, can be tough if you cool down too much. But still for a first century it's nice to have a decent lunch stop somewhere around mile 70 or 80 to get some real fuel on board after eating things like bananas and energy bars all day.

It's a good goal, pick a fun route that takes you somewhere interesting and you'll likely have a very good day.

Let us know how it goes,
-Dave
 
Meant to say 10 - 20 is a typo. I really think it would take about 8.5, but I would give myself a lot of breaks.
 
Originally Posted by MotownBikeBoy .

Meant to say 10 - 20 is a typo. I really think it would take about 8.5, but I would give myself a lot of breaks.
Ahhhh, that makes more sense.

FWIW, I'd suggest not looping trails close to home. Somewhere around hour six or seven that could get real old and make all too easy to just head home and call it a day. If you have reasonable confidence in your endurance and are self sufficient in terms of things like fixing flat tires out on the road I'd pick a destination that's at least 30 or 40 miles away with good roads that would be interesting to visit. Having a destination can make the day a lot more interesting and then you're almost halfway to your goal when you turn around and start heading home, perhaps on a bit longer route to finish out your solo century.

Perhaps the best bet is to lay out a 100 mile loop that has multiple destinations along the way where you can grab a bite to eat or a cold drink but laid out such that you can cut the loop short if you start to hit the wall later in the day. IOW, a big loop with shortcuts back through the middle to get home quicker if necessary. Mapmyride and Googlemaps can help plan such a route.

But sure, if you don't know how you'll do with 8+ hours in the saddle or don't feel confident fixing flats and doing basic on the road maintenance as necessary then staying close to home can work but it may take a lot more mental effort to stay on task later in the ride if you're not actually going anywhere.

-Dave
 
What is your longest ride? 40, 50, 60 miles? I just did a century at 5:38:29, but that was after doing 2 62 mile rides the prior 2 weeks. You should do a 60 mile first. It will tell you a lot about what you will experience on the 100. not to mention that you should go with someone on the 100. To do it alone is fine but not the best idea. Also you will need a tone of liquid. I went through 10 to 12 water bottles on mine, not to mention 3 bananas, 2 cookies, 1 energy bar, 5 Gatorade shot packs, and 3 PBj half's and I still finished the 100 weighing less than when I left.


Honestly do the 60s then go from there. don't forget to bring co2 and tubes and patches. But if I was you and you want to do the century I would just do 1 of your local bike events like tour de Cure or ride for *Insert hospital here*

Hook up with a local bike club, they are always doing rides.
 
daveryanwyoming said:
But sure, if you don't know how you'll do with 8+ hours in the saddle or don't feel confident fixing flats and doing basic on the road maintenance as necessary then staying close to home can work but it may take a lot more mental effort to stay on task later in the ride if you're not actually going anywhere. -Dave
Another benefit to doing one long ride instead of a bunch of loops is that you'll mentally committed to completing the ride. There won't be that temptation to just give up after a few laps. So long as you ride at a reasonable, sustainable pace, you shouldn't have any issues with completing the ride. Of course the benefit of doing an organized century is being able to chat with others while you're pedaling. Some folks might find that helpful to keep their mind of the distance remaining if that's an issue for them.
 
I did the 100 kilometer/62 mile TdC here three weeks ago, and found it a lot easier than I thought it would be. Which is why I think I could do 100 miles. If I stick relatively close to home here in the 'burbs, I have hundreds of miles of paved paths/trails, and convenient rest/refueling areas. If I can't do it and pack up and head home at mile X, no big deal, I can try again, and again, as many times as necessary. I'm not sure I like the concept of organized rides with a group or club - maybe because I got into this as therapy, mental and physical, and I view it as solitary time to work things out. Once in a while like TdC is ok, but on a regular basis, not so sure. My feelings may change on that one. I would enjoy the social aspect of a club/group, but I have too much on my plate right now, struggle to keep a full time job and deal with other things in my life. Eventually. I have faith that next year will be better than this one -2013 is certainly better than 2012 for me, cardiology not withstanding.
 
I did the 100 kilometer/62 mile TdC here three weeks ago, and found it a lot easier than I thought it would be. Which is why I think I could do 100 miles. If I stick relatively close to home here in the 'burbs, I have hundreds of miles of paved paths/trails, and convenient rest/refueling areas. If I can't do it and pack up and head home at mile X, no big deal, I can try again, and again, as many times as necessary. I'm not sure I like the concept of organized rides with a group or club - maybe because I got into this as therapy, mental and physical, and I view it as solitary time to work things out. Once in a while like TdC is ok, but on a regular basis, not so sure. My feelings may change on that one. I would enjoy the social aspect of a club/group, but I have too much on my plate right now, struggle to keep a full time job and deal with other things in my life. Eventually. I have faith that next year will be better than this one -2013 is certainly better than 2012 for me, cardiology not withstanding.
 

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