Want to get into competitive road cycling, need help with starting.

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by BuckDubs, Aug 28, 2013.

  1. BuckDubs

    BuckDubs New Member

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    Hi guys, I'm 19 years old and would really like to get into competitive road cycling. To start off I'm somewhat fit and have been trying to do a few bike rides every once and a while. Right now I can do a good 15 miles on a mountain bike and roughly 20+ miles on a road bike. I would like to race for my school next road bike season which is spring, so a few months out. What kind of training should I be doing to boost my performance to 70+ miles on a road bike. If I am determined will I realistically have a chance to compete when spring comes? I'm pretty determined and I am ready to take on a serious workout routine with 2-3 hour bike sessions multiple times a week. Let me know what you guys think. Thanks in advance.
     
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  2. jhuskey

    jhuskey Moderator

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    The best thing you can do is join a local group or find an experienced cyclist in your area to train with. There are many threads on this site that can also give you a lot of information. Other than that the simple answer is ride all you can as fast as you can.
     
  3. BuckDubs

    BuckDubs New Member

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    Awesome thanks, and should I start out slow, like 6 hours a week and slowly build up an hour or so every week or just go for it?
     
  4. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    Ride a lot as in most every if not every day each week but some rides can be short and easy just to freshen up the legs. Don't try to dramatically increase distance and intensity at the same time. IOW, it's cool to stretch some rides and ride a lot but don't also try to make all those rides fast or yo may burn out quickly. Listen to your body, take easy days or complete rest days but if you've got the time to be on the bike and can work it into your lifestyle then get out and ride.

    And +10 on the advice above, the best way to quickstart into racing is to join a club or team that works with new riders. It's by far your best move. Check local bike shops or Google for your local racing organization and a list of clubs/teams. This is the time of year that teams recruit for next seasons, here in Seattle each team will host one or more 'meet the team rides' where you get out and ride with folks to see if your interests and personalities match and that's how we get new riders for next season and beyond.

    If you live in the states google for your state level bike racing organization and from there you should get a list of teams and things like beginner racing clinics. If you are in the states you'll start as a Category 5 racer (for men) and work up from there but check into teams before taking out your annual license as it makes it easier to list your team on your license if you join the team first.

    Good luck,
    -Dave
     
  5. vspa

    vspa Active Member

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    and stay away from dopers !
     
  6. Volnix

    Volnix Well-Known Member

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    20km a day did good work on me... you can push it on some "segments" (like strava segments) but it all depends so much on the wind and the day so it kinda makes it pointless to compare times. Maybe you can compare power but thats not as much fun.

    In addition to the local club (with which I had no luck finding some nice training buddies) I would suggest trying to find a couple of friends to cycle with.

    Good luck! [​IMG]
     
  7. An old Guy

    An old Guy Member

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    You might consider asking you school's coach for help. You could even ride with your school's racers on training rides.

    ---

    20 miles on a road bike is about an hour. Most organized rides above the casual level are longer than that. Find an organized ride with a reasonable speed. Start a ride with them. Turn around when you get tired. Take tools to handle flats, money to buy food and drink, and a phone to call for help.

    That is how difficult it is. (Yea, you need to learn to be comfortable riding around cars.)
     
  8. BuckDubs

    BuckDubs New Member

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    Great advice guys! I'll get on it! Now I just need some sexy padded shorts. My guche is starting to callus.
     
  9. BuckDubs

    BuckDubs New Member

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    And another thing. Is it a similar process if I wanted to get into XC mtn bike racing? Find a bike shop/club, ride with guys, join a team (or is that more solo)?
     
  10. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    Well it sure won't hurt to find other MTB riders to ride with that know good trails and from whom you can learn some good off road technique. But the racing is quite different and not nearly as much a pack riding and drafting situation. IOW, you don't need to be able to ride elbow to elbow with other MTB racers just to race but in road races and especially in criteriums if you can't ride very well in a tight pack at speed and corner fast without touching your brakes and while holding a safe line you're gonna struggle.

    So yeah, MTB racing is more of a solo affair with the exception of the very front of most races but it would still be very helpful to find other folks to train and race with as a way to speed the learning curve.

    -Dave
     
  11. vspa

    vspa Active Member

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    MTB is easier on the amount of training required, but a lot of MTB bikers are succesfull when they switch to road racing, it helps that you are going up and down all the time so you kind of develop a good anaerobic capacity,
     
  12. BuckDubs

    BuckDubs New Member

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    Awesome, I've been mountain biking most of my life, so hopefully that'll be an advantage starting off. And by less training what do you mean? I like going on high intensity rides like up our local ski mountain, distance will only be like 4 - 5 miles one way but its a workout. Do that three times a week? With maybe a longer distance one fit in?
     
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