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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Watching the local news the morning that had a spot for Tour de Cure in my area (NW Arkanasas). They have 100/50/20 miles ride options, food/rest stations every 10/15 miles, medical and mechanical support, etc... Basically a very supported ride. I was readin about the routes and teh 100mile grabbed me and I haven't been able to shake the thought. My wife's grandfather had type II diabetes and passed away 1.5yrs ago, the route goes near where he lived and over the Lake the he lived on and enjoyed taking his kids and grandkids out on.

I'm a "weekend warrior". I've done 30 and 40 mile mtn bike rides before on fairly flat terrain. I feel that I am in the best shape I have ever been in, and I see this as a chance to really step it up. I don't have a road bike but have been wanting to buy one for >1 year now. It's not the thought of a new bike that I can't shake, it's the thought of doing the ride in memory of my wife's grandfather, someone I respected and admired.

The ride is in 2 months from tomorrow (Aug 2nd today, the ride is the first wknd in Oct), is this enough time to prepare for the distance? I have a trainer at home, and I know of a 12-15 mile loop on a local military base where alot of roadies ride, so I've got the places to ride, but I have no clue what sort of training schedule I would need to do to accomplish this in 8wks time. I feel I could do the 50mile ride (again it's a ride not a race), but I imagine I could be capable of 100 miles if I train correctly.

Any thoughts, suggestions to get me started?

Thanks for any suggesitons,
Phil.
 

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2 months is tons of time to prepare.

Get out and ride regularly, start doing 20 - 50 and 100 miles regularly. 100 miles really isnt that hard to be honest when your riding along with lots of people, friends, having a laugh, looking at the scenery etc.
 

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Go For It!

I agree with what trevor said, riding 100 miles on teh road is a lot of work but it's not that hard and you ahve plenty have time to train. I would get the road bike ASAP and start training. focus on volume not intesity. Your motivation of wanting to do the ride ride for someone you cared about and admired will help you finish the 100 miles with a smile on your face :)
 

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the double distance rule of thumb

You can always do double the distance of your longest "normal" ride. So if you can crank out a 50 miler without being bedridden for a couple days afterwards, you can do 100 miles.
For insurance, brew up a water bottle full of super strong espresso with like about 15 spoons of sugar or honey in it and don't drink it until like 75 miles when you're feeling semi-whacked. It'll get you thru the last 25 miles, trust me. I used to do this for double centuries and I set records on a couple of them back east that I'm told still stand 15 years later. Caffeine, good stuff.
That's also an oldschool euro racer trick,only they'd also put a shot of rum in with the espresso, and carry it around in a special little flask with a cork top called the Atom Bottle. Honest.
 

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You should be able to get round it easily I'd have thought.:)

Basically, so long as you eat and drink enough and don't go too hard in the first few hours you'll be fine.

As Trevor! said start building up the miles and try and do a 100 mile ride at least once before the actual event. If you're able to ride the actual route before hand it'll feel much shorter when you do it for real.:)

The trick is to always ride slower in a lower gear than you think you need to. The aim is to be strong after 5 hours rather than good for 3 hours and 2 hours of suffering.

Make sure you have some fairly thick road mitts, decent bib shorts and a good tip is to put some foam under the handlebar tape for more comfort too. Take your arms off the bars regularly and give them a shake to stop your hands going numb.

Use energy drink and either an energy gel or energy bars. You need to start eating and drinking almost straight away. If you're using energy bars I like to cut them into thin strips and have a strip every 15-20min. That way it sits lighter on your stomach than eating a whole bar once an hour.

Try to drink around a litre per hour and use water bottles rather than a Camelbak. Camelbaks are great for convenience but even with the Icebak part taken out make your body sweat too much in warm weather. Worn on your back they don't give you any noticeable aero advantage either. The drinking shouldn't be a problem as there's plenty of rest stops though.:)

Practice eating and drinking like this in all your rides so you know what's best for you.

If you can, try and do some group road rides. As well as being good training they're practice for following other riders. If you do most of your 100mile ride sitting behind another rider it'll be a lot easier.:)

Hope that helps.:)
 

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Linoleum Knife
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I'd start with some 20-30';s a couple times a week, then do a 50 / 60 / 70 on the weekends. 70 miles isn't bad. It's that last 30 that kicks your a$$.

Don't stress - Centuries are not races to 90% of the people out there. You'll have like 14 hours to do it before they close down the aid stations. Take lots of short breaks, and make sure you have a whole bunch of food available.

There are a lot of out-of shape people who do centuries. Especially centuries for cancer / aids / diabetes / MS etc.

Just work up to it. I wouldn't bother with 100 miles until the actual century. 100 miles is a long friggen way no matter how you look at it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Thanks for all the help and advice so far guys. I'm pretty sure I'm going to give it a go. I've asked another guy my wife works w/ that rides road occasionally. I haven't heard back from him though, but it'd be nice to have someone to train w/ out on the road.

So my next big move is to actually purchase a road bike. I'll make a post on "What bike to buy" on the roadbikereview forum, but would like your advice also. My budget is $1000, would prefer to buy from an LBS for support and making sure I get a good fit. What I consider "my" LBS carries Specialized, Cannondale, and Fuji. There's others in the area that carry Giant, Bianchi, Trek, Litespeed, etc...

Anyways, what I'm concerned with at the moment getting "beat up" on the bike. My budget doesn't allow for carbon/composite frames, so I'm looking aluiminum frames primarily. I guess cannondale makes some a little out of my price range that have carbon stays, and specialized has their cr-mo version of their Allez, that I could probably pick up a little over budget.

Also, Bianchi has the Eros that I could get sub $1k, and it's reynolds 631, but it's got Campy Mirage components and I have NO idea how these componenets compare to tiagra/105/ultegra shimano stuff. Do road riders primarly want all shifting done on the brake lever, or is the campy stuff still considered nice when it's not all up and downshift on the brake lever (at least the mirage isn't)? I'm pretty sure Tiagra and up shimano shifters have both up/down shifting on/at the brake levers.

Test ride, test ride, test ride. I know I need to and will, but I don't know if I will be able to feel the "comfort" difference on a steel/cr-mo or a bike w/ carbon seat stays comapred to a aluim frame w/ a carbon post.

Me: 24yrs old, 5'11.5", 160lbs. <-- info might be necessary since I'm talking frame material, I know it's more noticeable for heavy/light riders and has plus and cons for both.

Thanks for the help so far, feel free to post more thoughts if you have them about the situation (bike, century tips, training tips, preparation tips, etc...).
phil.
 

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Century

Suggest you solve all the practical problems beforehand, especially saddle, shorts, shoes, nutrition and pacing. Don't be trying anything new when you go for the 100. Test your gear and - ahem - any prospective riding partner(s) in advance. You'll get a lot of confidence from knowing that all you have to worry about is riding the bike.

Good luck to ya... come back and brag about it, and share what you learned... there's no telling who you might inspire!
 

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A few things to keep in mind...

First, MTB riding is way harder than road riding given a similar course profile. So if you've done a fairly flat 40 mile dirt MTB ride, it would be at least the equivalent of a 60 mile road ride. If you learn proper drafting technique (get a roadie to show you the ropes) it makes it even easier.

I would be wary of changing your equipment before doing this ride. I think you might find that your legs are fine, but because of the different position your neck, butt, or shoulders will give you problems. You might want to think about putting skinny slicks on your MTB and locking out the suspension (both front and back.)

Honestly, I think you'll find that this ride isn't as hard as you are making it out to be. I just did what is probably a much harder charity ride (120 miles over 3 of Colorado's highest passes) and you wouldn't believe the people that were out there kicking a$$. I swear I passed people that were 70 lbs overweight riding knobbies.

As far as a new bike goes, if you want something comfortable, steel is a great (and economical) choice. The standard for value used to be the KHS Flight 800. You might want to see if you can test ride one of those if they still make them. DO NOT get sucked into the weight weenie thing. Get something that feels good. A pound one way or the other is not going to make a difference.

While the Campy vs Shimano debate is pretty passionate (similar to the SRAM vs Shimano debate, I imagine) the truth is there is no significant difference. Mainly it's in the shifters. I find the Campy hoods to be more comfortable to my hands and don't like Shimano's brake lever shifters because they're squirrely with thick gloves on. Others feel the opposite. The one thing I would say is that if you're going with a triple, the Campy front shifting is better due to the increased number of positions possible.

Have fun on your ride--and don't worry about it too much.
 

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wyomingclimber said:
I just did what is probably a much harder charity ride (120 miles over 3 of Colorado's highest passes) and you wouldn't believe the people that were out there kicking a$$. I swear I passed people that were 70 lbs overweight riding knobbies.
Was that the Triple Bypass?

I thought about doing that, but after Ride the Rockies, I decided to wait until next year.

Looked like a whoooole lot of climbing.
 

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Yeah...

it was a lot of climbing. And I'd done no looking into it at all. Ate a huge breakfast, then started 15 minutes after the latest start time only to find that the thing began with something like 15 miles straight up. There's basically almost no flat road until the last 25 miles.

Really fun, though, you should do it next year...
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
2 days away

Just thought I'd check back in.

I ended up buying a road bike: Spec. Allez Comp cr-mo double, columbus foco frame w/ full ultegra. Only thing I've changed is switched to a 13-25 cassette instead of 12-25, I really like the 16t that the 12-25 was missing.

I've put about 500 miles in on it so far. I've been doing a weekly ride w/ a local club/group, usually 30-40 miles @ 18mph pace. It's gotten me used to riding in a group, being so close to ther riders, drafting, etc... I've done mostly 46 mile rides on saturdays, and I did one 100k/62.5mi ride solo one saturday. I was preparing to do a 70-80 mile ride last weekend, but I just didn't have the motivation to do it alone that day, instead I hooked up w/ another rider and we did a fast (for both of us) 46 miles at 18.5mph, I was suprised we went that fast but I was definetely not able to take equal pulls towards the end. I know I need to eat and drink better, I've been trying to get my weight down so sometimes I've been stupid and not consumed much, but other rides I've eaten better and definetely noticed a difference and plan to eat/drink regularly on the 100mile ride this weekend.

I'll be riding w/ a group in teh ride this weekend and am really glad I've done the group rides before, and also quite relieved that I'll have the support of other riders for my first century.

I've only done one ride on the mtn bike in the last 5 wks, kinda sad, but then again all my riding buddies have been to busy to mtn bike. I'm intersted to see what kind physical fitness difference I've gained since road biking and how it's going to transfer over to mtn biking. I'm looking at joining a roadie club and doing their weekend rides, etc... I can't believe I've come so far so quick really.

Thanks for all the advice and encouragement. I'll post a report sometime next week after this weekend's ride.

phil.
 

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Before my first century the longest I'd ever ridden was 35 miles on a road bike. My first one was on a mtb with slicks and a bob trailer full of 75 pounds of stuff. It sucked a lot, but I ended up doing 16 more centurys in the following 40 days. At one point I traveled 1200 miles in 10 days on my 100 pound rig. You should have nothing to worry about. You sound motivated enough and that's a large chunk of the effort if not all of it.
 
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