Training for a Metric Century in 2 months?

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by Manweiser, Mar 4, 2011.

  1. Manweiser

    Manweiser New Member

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    A LBS recently advertised a MayDay 100K ride for May 1st. The ride includes about 2300-2400 of climbing. I figure I have a month on the trainer before a month on the road before the ride. Last year, my longest distance was 32 miles, and this winter I've kept workouts under 60-70 minutes.

    My main question is if its possible to complete this ride without killing myself on it. And for my remaining month on the trainer, should I be focusing on longer sustained efforts rather than short intervals?
     
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  2. jpr95

    jpr95 Active Member

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    62 miles really isn't that far. If you know that there's a bunch of climbing, I'd work on training for that. If it's a bunch of short, but somewhat steep hills, then train intervals--you'll want to get your lungs working. If it's long climbs, then you'll want to train by doing longer, sustained efforts.

    However you train, though, the key is going to be to NOT push yourself during the ride as hard as you trained. That will help keep you from bonking. I went on a 7-day, 360-mile ride last year after about 3 months of training (and in the worst shape of my life). At the start of the first day, my longest ride ever had been 25 miles. Day 1 was 55 miles, day 2 was 72 miles, both mostly into the wind. I was hurting pretty good after the first day, but by go-time on day 3, I was starting to settle in.

    The bottom line is that there's no replacement for time in the saddle, though. Myself, I prefer to do it out on the road, but weather is still pretty cool and wet here right now.

    Above all, have fun!

    Jason
     
  3. jhuskey

    jhuskey Moderator

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    Road time would be helpful but as stated it's not that far and moderate climbing. Also consider you can wheel suck and save a bunch of energy. 62 mile will feel like 32 if you share the pulling.
     
  4. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    Yes, focus on more sustained efforts as in at least 15 to 30 minutes of solid effort rather than short 30 second or two minute style intervals. The key for the kind of ride you describe is sustainable power, not anaerobic short bursts so train the systems you're going to rely on during your ride.

    Search these boards or the web for info on SST (Sweet Spot Training) and try things like pairs of 20 minute intervals that get you breathing deeply and steadily and require focus to finish (but don't have to be maximal for the duration or absolutely brutal, just good solid work). Or try some longer say up to 90 minute sessions where you ride solid Tempo which should get you to noticeable deep and steady breathing but be very sustainable and backed off a bit relative to your 20 minute efforts.

    Good luck,
    -Dave
     
  5. Manweiser

    Manweiser New Member

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    Thanks for the advice! Until I am on the roads, I'm going to focus on 2x20s and 1X60s on the trainer. Tonight I pushed out a solid 60 minutes at 200-210 watts, which is much better than anything I did last month. Warm weather can't come soon enough!
     
  6. An old Guy

    An old Guy Member

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    200w for an hour on a trainer is certainly enough to get you up 2400' of climbing. Just make sure that you have gearing that provides a reasonable cadence on the climbs at 200w.
     
  7. Motobecane

    Motobecane New Member

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    Under armour is your friend, your in CT, I'm in NYC, weather still iffy but you should easily be able to start getting outside for some rides, especially with daylight savings giving us an extra hour of sunlight if evening riding is your friend. Get the proper cold weather gear and get out and ride! In my opinion, you won't need any specific training to get this done, after all it's not a race right? its just a long bike ride. you need to get more mileage under your belt. I'm a 240 lbs clyde and I semi trained for a century last year but I really just made it a point to get in 1 or 2 rides each week of 3 hours in addition to my other shorter hour long rides. I did an 80 mile ride 13 days before the century and that was my longest ride ever and I admit, I was a bit worried that it may have taken too much out of me to do 100 2 weeks later but I was actually completely fine. I think it definately helped. I did an easy recovery rides the week following the 80 miler then did one harder effort ride the week leading up to the century and I breezed through it but I will say if you've never spent 3 or 4 hours on a bike, it can be challenging on the body. My neck and shoulders fatigued because of the aggressive setup of my "race bike"
     
  8. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    You don't have to keep the sessions on the trainer to those given. Mix it up if needs be. 2x30 at a bit less that the 2x20 but a tad more than the 1x60 - it'll give you some time to stand on the pedals and your nether regions will vote for that... Heck - 3x30. A big fan is a must. I like 3x25 for the long indoor sessions, with 5 minutes rest between - it makes for convenient timing.

    One thing to look at when you do get out and start riding for more than 2 hours is feeding. Look at getting around 200 to 250Kcal per hour from drinks and food. Don't go crazy and try and stuff down more than that - you'll get gut ache, gas and probably much more... Try this out in training first. If you have no preference to what you like right now, see what the event organizers are going to be supplying and see if you like that.

    You don't have to train 62 miles to ride 62 miles in an event. If you can manage 2/3 of that then come the big day you should be fine. Just remember that your goal is to finish the event, so smile when everyone goes ape sh*t on the hills and watch them ride off and hope they wait for you at the top. If they don't, ride and chat with someone else.
     
  9. Manweiser

    Manweiser New Member

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    Moto - I hear you about the Under Armour, and I hope to get out there as soon as possible. They use so much sand/salt on the roads that I fear taking turns at speed. I'm sure the fear will subside in due time, but I'd hate to start a season with road rash. Usually the road are cleaned at the end of March. Considering the rain we've been having, the roads might be clean enough for some rides...

    Swampy - great suggestions for longer intervals. For the 2x20s, do you typically rest to recovery between? Or just 5 to 10 minutes?

    Two or three weeks prior to the ride, I am going to try portions of the route to understand the hills and to experience 2-3 hour ride. I'd like to ride the route ahead of time, but who knows if my schedule will allow 4+ hours on the bike one Saturday/Sunday. We'll see though - making it a point to ride a whole lot more this season.
     
  10. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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    Man, you will probably do well. I agree if time allows to get out and do something similar to the event mileage at a recreational pace just to get your confidence up. I find what Moto says is true for me, but the discomfort does not start to kick in for me until mile 80 or so, but if it does and the mind goes negative the body is more than willing to shut it down and the remaining miles become drudgery.

    Using what you know about your FT you know that if you stay at or below 75% of FT you will be perfectly fine. It is not until you begin to push a higher IF that the metric may become an issue, but still if you decide to push a higher IF it can be a good test. If you have to drop from your group there is no shame in this either. I was dropped last year by my group at mile 80 when I had a fitness cramp. I picked up some struggling cyclists from Florida in the remaining 20 miles and we all limped in together with a nice conversation pace.

    My group is now up to 80 mile training rides for a May century event with three extended climbs. I did an 80 mile training ride with the group two weekends ago at a recreational pace just to see how my neck, back, hands and feet with cope with the miles. No issues at all so now we continue with 80 to 100 mile rides and pick up the intensity as we go just to get the mental confidence. (I agree with Swampy that one does not need to train 62 miles for a 62 mile event, but for me it is more of a sports psychology thing than a fitness thing.)
     
  11. Motobecane

    Motobecane New Member

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    Funny that you say that, with all the wind we had last night the roads here in the city look spotless!!!

    BTW, whats wrong with slowing down to take turns???? A lot of what you need right now is to just build up your base and get your body used to being in riding position on the bike for longer durations than what you currently do. Don't worry about the speed, you can do that training on your trainer. A lot of this depends on your mentality towards the ride, I hate getting off the bike but at the same time it's foolish not to take advantage of rest areas, especially when you want to limit the amount of stuff you carry on your person. When I did my century it was an 80+ degree day in october so it felt really hot out and I made it a point to make sure I had two full bottles of fluid EACH HOUR, one was typically just water, the other one was some type of HEED or other sports drink to meet my calorie requirements. At the time I was about 235lbs so I was shooting for about 300 calories an hour intake each and every hour of my century. If I were doing a metric, I probably just eat my normal breakfast and not worry about taking in any calories during the first hour and go with 300 an hour after that.
     
  12. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    Typically, 5 minutes will give you enough time to feel semi-reasonable again. It's enough time on the trainer to get out of the saddle and stretch the legs as well as towel yourself down a bit and maybe grab a bit of water. Getting out of the saddle is pretty essential to give the the 'nether regions' a bit of relief. If you're really suffering towards the end of an interval because you went a bit too hard then take an extra bit of time between efforts - another 5 minutes isn't going to hurt things. I just keep it at 5 because for the most part I don't need longer and anything longer just ends up being added time that's wasted. But be flexable with your rests if needed and take note of how you feel after an extended rest - it may be that you initially feel better but you end up with dead legs and the perceived effort to hit the required power is more than you expect.

    Under Armour - over rated. The name suggests great things but you'll be just as well served by several layers made up from short sleeve and long sleeve Haynes cotton t's that can be hand for cheap from WalMart or Target. Layering, and the ability of the layers to move against each other, is the key to reducing roadrash on your body.
     
  13. Manweiser

    Manweiser New Member

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    I've been going with easy spinning 150+/- watts or so during the rest periods between intervals. Actually getting off the bike will probably help to complete that second interval strong and add a third. I'll have to try this for my next 10 min or 20 min interval session.

    I am surprised by the cotton suggestion. I never go wrong with a poly-pro or similar material shirt as an insulator whether its Under Armor, Patagonia, LLBean, etc etc.
     
  14. Motobecane

    Motobecane New Member

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    under armour is so NOT overrated. it's just as easy to layer too and ther eis nothing worse than cotton if you ever finish up a ride and need to stop somewhere to do a couple of things and you begin to cool down, soaking wet cotton against your skin whey you go back out is aweful. one under armour "cold gear" long sleeve, my cannondale medium weight long sleeve jerey and if it's below 30, i wear a regular old fleece on the top layer and off I go. just as warm as layering cotton without the bulkiness
     
  15. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    The only time I'd recommend getting off the bike during intervals is either getting off to puke or if you're pulling an Andy Wilkinson - and doing 2 to 3 hour sessions several times per day with a couple of hours in between. Andy held the Lands End to John o'Groats record and hold the 12 hour record back over the other side of the pond - 302 miles - set of a less that dragstrip course.

    [​IMG]

    I guess if you've got the spuds to be invited to do the Hercules Challenge and do fairly well until you collapse through effort then 12 hours on the grim roads of Shropshire and 3x3hours aint too big of a deal. :p




    Sure, Under Armour is ever so slightly more comfortable during a rest stop than a cotton shirt but the difference is almost negligable. In the event of a crash it does just about as well as providing abrasion resistance. I've never had a problem with cotton shirts while out on long rides. Back in the day during winter we'd do 80 to 120 mile rides on a Sunday and spend about 45 minutes in a cafe out in the back of beyond (somewhere in north west England) thawing and drying out. No awful experiences to be had clothing wise before heading back out for the last half of the ride. When I do rides like the ~200mile Alta Alpina 8 pass, where you start at o'dark thirty and it's downhill for the first few miles and usually around 40F (last year was 36) I'll throw on a couple of extra layers underneath that'll I'll take off at the drop off and I'll just wear whatever is on the top of the 'cycling undershirt' pile - whether it's a cotton shirt or some of the nice Pearl Izumi undershirts that I got as gifts.
     
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