When it comes to training, I’m no expert. I don’t know what my VOX max or my lactate threshold is. I’m not usually much more sophisticated in my methods than just ‘Get on your bike and ride’. For most one-day rides, or even weekend events, this is a pretty good place to start. But for seven days and 473 miles? A bit more focus will be required. Lucky for me, my cycling friends are a lot more detail oriented and have helped a lot.
First off, if you haven’t started training, you’re late. Get on your bike and ride! For other riders new to the event like me, I think a really good place to start is on the RTR website. I’ve found the 16 week training plan provided there to be very helpful. It breaks down how many days and hours a week you should be riding, and what type or ride it should be. Although, working full time and training means some adjustments have to be made. My midweek rides tend to be shorter in duration and admittedly fewer than recommended. I try to make up for that by pushing myself harder on those rides to get more out of them, and pushing the distance of my weekend rides so my total time in the saddle is where it should be.
Another thing I like to do to mix things up is to take a training day to the spin room the gym. Whether you are spinning on your own or in a class, this is a great place to push yourself while doing sprint and climbing interval training. It’s also a great way to simulate hill climbing if you live somewhere that doesn’t have a lot of local elevation gain. It’s hard to train for a 20 mile, 6000 foot climb (I’m looking at you Grand Mesa!) if your biggest local climb is only 400 feet. The spin room is also a good place to keep training while being a weather wimp. Because sometimes after rain, hail and snow on consecutive rides you deserve a day indoors. (Spring training in the Rockies is never dull!)
I think I’ve rambled enough for one post. Besides, daylight is burning! It’s time to ride!
Cycling etiquette tip of the day: When overtaking another rider, it is polite to announce your presence by calling out ‘On your left!” or “Passing”. Phrases like “Outta the way slowpoke!” may see you banished from the beer garden and/or other general ostracism.