JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

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Andy_F
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JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby Andy_F » 2 Feb 2014, 4:00pm

First of all; Hi! I'm new to the forum and found my way here by virtue of currently planning my first E2E ride (JOGLE). Myself and two guys from work are going to be doing the ride in late August or Early September within 8 days for charity. We're all pretty excited and nervous as we've never done anything like this before.

All three of us are pretty fit and I regularly use a 30 mile route round me for fitness (in decent weather). I went out yesterday and rode >40 miles for the first time (avg. 13.1mph), now there was quite an epic amount of wind, but the extra 12 miles to my usual route killed me. The last 5 miles, I felt like I had nothing left in the tank, the legs were gone which was worrying because I thought I was fitter than that.

Due to work commitments, I cant get out midweek in the winter, but do go to the gym regularly for base fitness. My plan was to really ramp up the mileage in spring which will hopefully help me break through the longer distance barrier.

My question to you seasoned (and possibly not so seasoned!) cyclists, is how you break through that long distance training barrier? Is it a case of building endurance by going through that barrier time and time again or do you have any particular endurance tips?

Thanks in advance for sharing any of your training tips!

Vorpal
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby Vorpal » 2 Feb 2014, 10:27pm

Welcome to the forum.

To me the hardest part of any long distance ride is getting back on the bike day after day.

The best way to build miles and get the body used to riding day after day is to commute by bike. If you can't do it every day, do it as often as possible. If you work too far away, do it a couple of days a week or drive part way.

It is the most time efficient way to do put the miles in.

Good luck :)
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TrevA
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby TrevA » 3 Feb 2014, 12:26pm

I would say start with the distance you can currently do and ride 10% further each week. So 30 miles, then 33, then 37, then 41, then 45 then 50 and so on. You can ramp up a bit quicker if you find this is within your comfort zone. Try and do back to back days at the weekend, with the longest ride on the Saturday. This will get you used to riding day after day. So if you do 40 on Saturday, drop down to 30 on the Sunday. Riding the longer day first will allow you some leeway if the weather's bad on either day.

I'm not sure what you mean by barrier. I've done rides up to 140 miles in a day and find that I can cope with the occassional longer ride if i'm getting out every weekend and getting a decent (50-70 mile) ride in.
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Andy_F
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby Andy_F » 3 Feb 2014, 4:26pm

Cheers both, makes sense ramping up.

I think by barrier, I meant that Saturday felt like I suddenly hit a wall where the legs were gone. It was literally in the space of 10 minutes, felt fine then felt kaput. I think I've not given the wind enough credit into the affect this will have had on me.

I work all over the UK so sadly commuting is out of the question. I'm usually back in time to do at least 20 miles most days and then a couple of big rides at weekends will be the plan.

All the best.

LollyKat
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby LollyKat » 3 Feb 2014, 5:41pm

Andy_F wrote:I think by barrier, I meant that Saturday felt like I suddenly hit a wall where the legs were gone. It was literally in the space of 10 minutes, felt fine then felt kaput. I think I've not given the wind enough credit into the affect this will have had on me.

A headwind makes it much harder, but it sounds as if you hadn't got your food and drink intake right, and got the bonk.

Ray
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby Ray » 3 Feb 2014, 5:41pm

It sounds as if this is less a case of lack of fitness than running out of fuel/energy reserves in the muscles, something that can happen even to elite athletes when, for example, marathon runners 'hit the wall'. Have a look at your food/drink intake before and during the ride (you'll certainly need to think about taking on extra 'fuel' once you go beyond 3 hrs). There's lots of info on this on the web.

As for increasing training distance, you've several months to go during which you should steadily increase your riding until you gain in endurance and, crucially, in the confidence to cope with longer rides day after day.
Ray
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Vorpal
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby Vorpal » 3 Feb 2014, 8:09pm

LollyKat wrote:
Andy_F wrote:I think by barrier, I meant that Saturday felt like I suddenly hit a wall where the legs were gone. It was literally in the space of 10 minutes, felt fine then felt kaput. I think I've not given the wind enough credit into the affect this will have had on me.

A headwind makes it much harder, but it sounds as if you hadn't got your food and drink intake right, and got the bonk.


That's what it sounds like to me, too. Other things can contribute, as well, such as being short on sleep. The last time I had the bonk, it was after fighting a head wind. I would plan a tea/snack break before the end of the usual ride length, so as to regain a little before running out of energy.
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Si
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby Si » 3 Feb 2014, 8:20pm

Chapeau to your ambition and bravery!

Playing the harbinger of doom: eight days on even the shortest route is looking at around 100mpd with virtually no contingency. Given that it's only six or so months away, that you are currently only up to a 40mile ride and that you say your riding time is limited during the week, I would say that it could be a big challenge - by no means impossible, but don't be surprised if it hurts... a lot. It's not just the fitness, but it's being able to sit in the saddle for that long each day, and keeping the spirits up.

First thing I would recommend, if you are limited to doing it in 8 days, is to do it as part of an organised event/tour so that there is someone there to transport your luggage, support you, etc.
Then, to get the fitness required in the time you have, I'd look at a proper training plan - I found this to be an extremely good book : http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Long-Distan ... 0713668326 IIRC it covers bike choice, position, nutrition and building up the mileage.
Enter some audaxes as a way of getting the miles up and having fun in a friendly environment.
Finally, get used to suffering....'cos you are going to suffer. At the end you will feel fabulous and you'll have achieved something remarkable...but along the way you will suffer (of course, the amount of training you can do early doors will reduce the suffering).

However, the above advice goes against my own preferred avenue. If it really were me, I'd change the itinerary so that I could do it in, say, 16 days. This would allow a more scenic route, and would also mean fewer miles per day and even the odd rest day. It would also mean that you'd be more likely to be able to build up the fitness by just getting out and riding for fun rather than having to follow a rigorous plan (personally I find following a plan to be a PITA and it really puts me off - YMMV). Taking longer to do it also means it's easier to be self supported if this is what you want.....I enjoyed doing it much more by riding in this style than I would have with a group and helpers.

Anyway, good luck with it, I hope the above doesn't sound like it's a downer - what you want to do is entirely possible if you are willing to put some work in...but it won't all be easy.

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TrevA
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby TrevA » 4 Feb 2014, 12:41pm

Andy_F wrote:Cheers both, makes sense ramping up.

I think by barrier, I meant that Saturday felt like I suddenly hit a wall where the legs were gone. It was literally in the space of 10 minutes, felt fine then felt kaput. I think I've not given the wind enough credit into the affect this will have had on me.

I work all over the UK so sadly commuting is out of the question. I'm usually back in time to do at least 20 miles most days and then a couple of big rides at weekends will be the plan.

All the best.


You can usually ride through this barrier. It happened to me on my 130 miler (actually a 210km audax). The return leg was into the wind and i'd been doing a lot of riding on the front, as I felt strong. We got to 100 miles, then bang! I was suddenly crawling, but after a further 10 miles I recovered and was riding strongly again by the end. It's often to do with running out of energy rather than lack of fitness.

To define "suffering" - your bum and legs will ache each day but the leg ache will often disappear after a bit of riding. You won't be in actuall physical pain, but you might start feeling a bit grim. Take each day as it comes and don't become daunted by the whole ride.
A cart horse trapped in the body of a man.
http://www.jogler2009.blogspot.com

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Si
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby Si » 4 Feb 2014, 2:01pm

Take each day as it comes and don't become daunted by the whole ride.


Good advice - make your current target the next rest stop, not somewhere 800miles down the road!

eileithyia
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby eileithyia » 5 Feb 2014, 8:03am

As others have said, sounds as though got the bonk, and had not eaten/fuelled enough, you do not say what sort of stops, if any, you had on this ride. Extra 12 miles may not sound much but it is almost 50% further.... and on a windy day when even seasoned fit cyclists can suddenly find they have under estimated just how much harder riding in wind can be.

Ramp a bit slower, take some food on board and carry some emergency rations. Yes you can ride through bad spells, but often when on long distance endurance events I find it is best to stop and take on board some nutrition; be that a cereal based bar, energy bar etc., and just have 5-10 mins off the bike to re-gather resources. As weather improves (please) and nights draw out try to get a couple of evenings in and certainly get some back to back weekend rides as it is not easy getting back in the saddle day after day. You should have time to build up your miles between now and then.
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bearonabike
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby bearonabike » 6 Feb 2014, 9:59pm

Sounds like you're fit but not fully cycling fit yet, which will only come with hours in the saddle. Others are right that you may well have bonked on this occasion - that's easily resolved by sorting out your food/ fluid intakes.

Wind is the cyclist's worst climatic enemy. Your 40 miles may well be the equivalent of 60 in benign conditions. But parts of your JOGLE (generally anywhere north of Carlisle) will be in less than ideal conditions so be prepared for it.

Don't be too alarmed by what's just happened to you but please don't under estimate what you've signed up for either - 8 days is a very ambitious target, do-able but not without a lot of miles in the legs. Once you've established your base cycling fitness a bit more, regular 5 or 10 mile increments should be perfectly realistic, just not on every single ride. From my own experience it won't be too many months before you'll be able to do your first century. BUT you need to string 8 of those together back to back and that's the tough bit. Training hard 2,3,4 days in a row will help you immensely as will some painful hill work so that you're not fazed by the road heading upwards after 90 miles on the fifth day when it's raining.

Any form of fitness will help you, but maybe substitute some gym sessions for spinning classes.

Good luck!

Andy_F
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby Andy_F » 8 Feb 2014, 1:46pm

Cheers all.

Feedback now is that it was certainly poor planning of energy intake. Been out and done 58 miles this morning/afternoon in harsher wind than last week. Planned energy intake properly and got on with the ride fine. Felt strong all the way through and felt like I could have gone on longer (an afternoon of 6N rugby dictated otherwise!).

Plan is to go out again tomorrow and see how we go with continuity.

Feeling a lot more positive than I was last week.

Roll on! :D

LollyKat
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby LollyKat » 8 Feb 2014, 4:49pm

Great news - well done!

mnichols
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Re: JOGLE - Training Question - Stepping up the distance

Postby mnichols » 8 Feb 2014, 5:16pm

I agree with stepping up the training by 10% per week, but would do this by time on the bike rather than distance. Weather conditions such as headwinds and terrain make it difficult to compare one ride to another. Also you will need to add hills in, and you don't want to increase distance and hills at the same time, because your time on the bike will be going up by more than 10%. Add the hills in, 1 more every few weeks, and make sure the ride time doesn't increase by more than 10%

Every 4th or 5th week give yourself a break and allow your body to recover. Just ride for fun, don't take the computer, forget the distance, time and speed and just enjoy yourself. This way you won't burn yourself out, but you also allow your muscles to repair and helping to prevent injuries. The week after your recovery ride should be easier than your last hard week, but harder than the first week.

Using this formula you should be able to calculate if you have enough time between now and then to be ready.