Lake Taho Race - Newbie Question


New Member
Apr 23, 2003
I will be participating in a race around Lake Tahoe (72 miles RT) in early June. The elevation is 6000+ feet, I am at 250 feet. From what I recall there are many rolling hills and some very steep hills with very few flat areas. Since I can't duplicate the elevation in Tahoe, what's the best way to train for this event? BTW this is my first race. ;) Thanks.



New Member
Mar 26, 2003

You are breaking off a pretty big chunk for your first race. I've been to Tahoe many times. The area reminds you of a Tour mountain stage. Snow capped peaks in summer with a huge lake in the center.

With the High altitude, the climbs, and because it's your first race, don't be surprised if you get dropped rather quickly. You would be much better off doing some crits or shorter road races at sea level to accustom yourself to the demands of racing.

All racers have been dropped before. Think of how it will feel to be dropped after 10 miles and riding the remaining 62 miles by yourself. I'm not trying to scare you or sound negative, but as far as road racing goes, a high altitude road race with steep climbs is about the most difficult racing situation possible.

If this is your first race, you will be shocked at how hard it is. It will be the hardest thing you have probably ever done in your life.

If you are bound and determined to do it, do lots of climbing. Do hill sprints of 10-20 seconds up shorter steep climbs also. You should also be doing 100+ miles once a week on any terrain for 72 miles of hilly racing. Your body may not be able to handle this kind of workload if you are new to racing.

You won't feel as bad with the altitude problem if you can take some time off and spend a week or two in Tahoe before the race. With family, work, school, and other responsibilities, most people can't do this. It takes a few weeks to fully acclimate the body to altitude.

Is this a USCF race??? If this is your first race ever, you will be a category 5 road racer. 72 miles is long for a cat 4/5 road race, especially in that terrain.

Good Luck!!!