Author Topic: Top tips for going longer  (Read 35083 times)

Charlie Boy

  • Dreams in kilometers
    • Web
Top tips for going longer
« on: April 03, 2011, 08:34:16 pm »
I've done plenty of 200s and am looking forward to my first 300 next weekend, and feel ready for it (famous last words).  :-\

In my experience a 200 is 'just' a long day in the saddle but going longer takes in new territory. I'd welcome what your most important tip is for not only a 300 but going through to an SR, and if lucky enough to qualify and get a place, PBP.

It might be mental approach, kit, control and feeding strategy, or how to approach night riding when your body or mind says you should be in bed or in the pub.

So far the most important thing I've learnt through experience is that there often comes a moment on rides when you wander why you turned up, but that moment passes and the happy days return; that knowledge gets me through the dark spots.

What I have in enthusiasm I lack in experience, so first hand tips gratefully received. Hopefully a few of this parish may agree on a few key points which will help me greatly.

Thanks.
Mojo is being awakened.

http://greenjerseycycling.co.uk

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2011, 09:16:56 pm »
One of the best pieces of advice I've found useful on long rides is to think of it one stage at a time. Don't think beyond the next control. This reduces a scarily long ride to a series of do-able stages.

For rides involving a sleep stop, work out best and worse cases for arrival time and how long you want to stop for in advance, and write it down. This means you aren't trying to work out what time you want to wake up in a sleep deprived state.

Emma
California Dreaming

Karla

  • car(e) free
Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2011, 09:25:31 pm »
A 300 is like a longer 200.  You'll probably need lights at the end, but it's just a long day ride.
A 400 will involve some serious riding at night.  Make sure you've got a good, reliable light setup and get a good stock of food before riding through the night when the shops are shut.  You'll want an extra layer of clothing for this as well.  Some people sleep on 400s, I've never felt the need for more than a 10 minute catnap but you may want to take some caffeine tablets with you just in case.
A 600 is a different animal from the rest as unless you're a very strong rider or very used to sleep deprivation, you'll need to sleep en route.  This makes it more like two rides than one, except that the clock's ticking all the time. 

One more thing that I've discovered to my cost is that a very long ride like a 600 shows up all the imperfections in your bike fit that you may not notice on a 200, as your body can put up with them for the length of the shorter ride.  Make sure you get this right beforehand!
Latest tour journal: Bucharest to Berlin

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #3 on: April 03, 2011, 09:27:56 pm »
Top tip ? Find someone to ride with and have a natter with them.

MercuryKev

  • Maxin' n Audaxin'
Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #4 on: April 03, 2011, 09:33:25 pm »
My top tips would be to eat little and often and understand that there is nothing wrong with getting of the bike for 5 minutes if things get a bit achy.  It's amazing how a little rest and a wee bit of food can perk you up a bit if you're feeling a bit down.

clarion

  • Tyke
Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2011, 09:45:39 pm »
I'm sure I had a spam email selling little blue pills with this title... ;)
Getting there...

jogler

  • mojo operandi
Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2011, 10:23:13 pm »
ask me again after Saturday April 9th

fboab

  • It's a fecking serious business, riding a bike
Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2011, 10:42:54 pm »
Top tip ? Find someone to ride with and have a natter with them.

This.

And take drugs. Lots of drugs.
TSS is not Total Sex Score, Chris!

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2011, 10:45:11 pm »
Attend to a minor discomfort before it becomes a major pain, but know which niggles you can ignore.
Never ride with an empty bidon or a full bladder.
If you get a puncture, after getting off your bike, the first thing you should do is EAT.
Never let yourself get too hot, too cold or to dry; the stress hormones secreted will leave you fatigued for no good reason.
Know how and when to use caffeine.
Learn to listen to your body.
Learn which foods an drinks work for you; one man's meat is another man's poison.
In the words of the Yiddishe Mama
EAT OR I'LL KILL YOU!

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2011, 10:48:51 pm »
eat and eat

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #10 on: April 03, 2011, 10:51:12 pm »
eat and eat

But not forgetting to ride and ride.

Manotea

  • Just 1 sob, Vassily
Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #11 on: April 03, 2011, 11:16:26 pm »
Commit yourself to the ride. It's not a race and it's going to take a while, so take your time, live in the present and enjoy every moment, the good times as well as the bad.

red marley

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #12 on: April 03, 2011, 11:18:21 pm »
And don't forget to enjoy yourself. I willingly return to do SRs each year not because I need to prove anything, but because riding is fun.

(cross posted with Manotea, but I think we are saying the same thing).

3peaker

  • RRTY Mad 27-up! Still going
Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #13 on: April 03, 2011, 11:46:28 pm »
Pace yourself, so you minimise the build up of lactic (the fatigue producer). Once you have passed the 100km point you will develop a natural pace and your HR will be comfortable.  If you stay with a bunch that you might be happy with on a shorter ride, you may not realise your HR is uncomfortably high and the adrenalin flow will hide the lactic build up.  I wear a HR monitor and try to keep my HR below 150 on big rides when climbing; that means using your lower gears more than you might for a shorter ride.  The idea is to use comfortable cadence.  I do not mind being dropped.  Once even on a 200, I was going with the flow and my HR was at 170 uphill; great sensation (which proved I was fit) but I backed off.  I am in my 30th year having started this game at age 34 as a regular 12hr TT-er and was regularly a first finisher (at Audax not 12hr!).  Now I listen to my body, pace myself and go for VFM (as they say). 

Once you have kept to a comfortable pace for the early Controls, you will also have joined up with others with whom you might complete the ride with bit & bit riding and mind-settling company.

SteveP
BC Club Coach
SteveP

Promoting : Cheltenham Flyer 200, Cider with Rosie 150, Character Coln 100 17 Mar 18, Gospel Pass 200, YatMon160 (Imp 100), Hoarwithy 100, 9 Jun 18.

Hummers

  • It is all about the taste.
Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #14 on: April 04, 2011, 12:30:47 am »
Don't get too pissed up the night before otherwise you'll just feel miserable for the first 100k.

H

AndyH

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #15 on: April 04, 2011, 06:30:16 am »
eat and eat
Food - I started off using all the energy gel / bar / powder stuff, but once you get into the longer rides they don't really work, you just end up with a sticky downtube. The only exception I would make now is that I generally keep a gel with caffeine in it for the dead of night sleepy bit.

I have recently found Co-op fairtrade berry & fruit cereal bars to be like rocket fuel, & try to have one 5 or 6 miles before the control, then something slow release (like a sandwich) at the control itself.

Nuun or Zero tablets in the Bidon. Taste OK & are isotonic. I use them all the time, from the start. Never feel like I'm dehydrating, never feel like I have to drink loads to quench my thirst.

+1 to keeping the heart rate low, I made the mistake quite a few times of going off too fast and blowing up later.

Good luck on the Denmead 300,

Alouicious

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #16 on: April 04, 2011, 07:23:53 am »
Science.

Your body can store about 2000 cals of ready energy. Get this by Carbo Loading.

When you start riding, you will be using that energy at something like an average of 8 Cals/min. Your body can absorb about 6 Cals/min, so every minute's cycling that passes, you are 2 cals down IF you start eating from the off.

Let's say to avoid hunger, eat continuously at 360 Cals/hour of CARBS.

Even so, you have only 1000 minutes of ready energy, or 16hrs 40mins.

To extend this, ride slower so the differential between out and in is lower.

On a reasonable bike, 8 cal/min is about 15.5 mph.

Slow it down to a 14 mph average and your on the threshold of equal calorie exchange.

The only other factor now is having the quantity of active muscle fibres to cope with the exertion timespan.


Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #17 on: April 04, 2011, 09:18:07 am »
If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience…

border-rider

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #18 on: April 04, 2011, 09:24:40 am »
Science.


Indeed.  And science tells us that the only way to get enough energy for longer rides is to burn fat. No matter how much you eat you won't be able to replenish muscle & liver glycogen faster than you are burning them.  If you can do long, steady miles on low energy input in the early season (now is not too late) you can develop your fat metabolism to run at higher HRs and so provide a greater proportion of energy at audax pace.

On the very long rides your digestion will be somewhere between impaired and shut down, and a lot of people find eating can be a real problem. 

AndyH

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #19 on: April 04, 2011, 09:26:56 am »
Well if we are doing Audax according to Baz
If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience…
"Be kind to your knees, you’ll miss them when they’re gone"

Si_Co

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #20 on: April 04, 2011, 09:29:25 am »
Off topic:

The long term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists

Only cause no-one has looked at the long term consequences of nano-tech exposure

Alouicious

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #21 on: April 04, 2011, 10:00:48 am »
Science.


Indeed.  And science tells us that the only way to get enough energy for longer rides is to burn fat. No matter how much you eat you won't be able to replenish muscle & liver glycogen faster than you are burning them.  If you can do long, steady miles on low energy input in the early season (now is not too late) you can develop your fat metabolism to run at higher HRs and so provide a greater proportion of energy at audax pace.

On the very long rides your digestion will be somewhere between impaired and shut down, and a lot of people find eating can be a real problem.  

And then there are also problems like Nausea, Gastric reflux, Headache, Ketosis, halitosis, constipation, thinning hair..... ;)

TOBY

  • hello
Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #22 on: April 04, 2011, 10:09:21 am »
Sweet & Sour chicken, Red Bull, Magnum Ices, Coke all the other crap will get you to the moon but this will get you to Mars and back ;)

<edit> forgot Scampi Fries </edit>

Alouicious

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #23 on: April 04, 2011, 10:16:38 am »
Science.


Indeed.  And science tells us that the only way to get enough energy for longer rides is to burn fat. No matter how much you eat you won't be able to replenish muscle & liver glycogen faster than you are burning them.  If you can do long, steady miles on low energy input in the early season (now is not too late) you can develop your fat metabolism to run at higher HRs and so provide a greater proportion of energy at audax pace.

On the very long rides your digestion will be somewhere between impaired and shut down, and a lot of people find eating can be a real problem. 

My 'Audax pace' is 16 - 17 mph on a 100, 15 - 16 mph on a 150, 14 - 15 mph on a 200, 13 - 14 mph on a 300 and 12 - 13 mph on a 400.

Re: Top tips for going longer
« Reply #24 on: April 04, 2011, 10:18:37 am »
Off topic:

The long term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists

Only cause no-one has looked at the long term consequences of nano-tech exposure
Personally I prefer the slight risk from sunscreen (some are better than others) to the absolutely known and very very real risk from skin cancer. Every Single Member of my family who is my age or older (both parents, brother, sister in law) has had skin cancer.
Sunburn can really ruin your summer ride. Use some sort of sunscreen, ffs.
<i>Marmite slave</i>