Enjoyable Audax

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.
Merry_Wanderer
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Enjoyable Audax

Postby Merry_Wanderer » 6 Dec 2014, 10:05pm

Not a question, just thought I would share my experience of the 106km 'Flowers to Furnace' Audax that I rode earlier today. Despite the freezing cold the ride was really enjoyable. Some surprisingly nice lanes, great views and a fantastic sunset. This was my first 100km Audax and I am looking forward to many more in 2015

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Paulatic
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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby Paulatic » 6 Dec 2014, 10:48pm

I've an envelope full of Brevet cards each jogs the memory. Great memories of snow,ice,rain, sun, and most of all the splendid areas of Britain I rode through with some great people.
Audax gave me the confidence to ride what originally looked like very long distances. I started with a 200 and jumped to 400 and was exceptionally pleased when I got my SR. Series. Riding the very last organised Daylight 600 left me with migraines which then curtailed my cycling for a number of years.

Hope you have a successful year in 2015. I still recall the excitement, when the new calendar arrived, of planning the years rides ahead.
Whatever I am, wherever I am, this is me. This is my life

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Merry_Wanderer
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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby Merry_Wanderer » 7 Dec 2014, 8:33am

Thanks very much Paulatic. My longest ever ride is 78 miles on our last day of The Pennine Cycleway. I have found in Audax events (I have only done two!) an enjoyable 'reason' to push myself to ride for longer distances. I would love to be able to complete a 200 and I am also looking forward with excitement and some trepidation to the events that I have put on the 2015 calendar.

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Audax67
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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby Audax67 » 7 Dec 2014, 8:53am

@M-W Congrats! I'm sure you know what comes next: 200-300-400-600-PBP.
Have we got time for another cuppa?

Merry_Wanderer
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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby Merry_Wanderer » 7 Dec 2014, 9:29am

That's what my friend Mike (who did PBP 2007) said. I told him he was delusional :)

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Audax67
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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby Audax67 » 7 Dec 2014, 9:41am

Aye, but maybe he isn't.

Main problem with increasing distance is the seat. PBP can be very hard on the butt, but with the right saddle, shorts & lube wonders can be accomplished.
Have we got time for another cuppa?

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Mick F
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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby Mick F » 7 Dec 2014, 10:15am

I did my first Audax last May.
Rode out from Merriden on the 100mile route with hundreds of others. (I refuse to use the "160km")
I sort of enjoyed it, but I had reservations, and I can't see me ever doing another Audax.
I enjoy my own company and doing my "own thing" so didn't really relish the experience.

Funny thing though .................I overtook the same cyclists on more than one occasion! :lol:
The route we were given was well-written and it came with a GPX to download. The GPX was very "course" and it was possible that the route finally calculated by a Garmin device may not be exactly what was required.

I sussed this out as soon as I got the download, and spent ages re-creating the proper route manually on BikeHike with due regard to the written instructions. Consequently, I followed the exact route, but some folk took "short cuts". :lol: :lol: I'm sure they didn't do it deliberately, but maybe because their Garmins had made their own minds up.
Mick F. Cornwall

Merry_Wanderer
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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby Merry_Wanderer » 7 Dec 2014, 12:37pm

I did the whole ride on my own Mick, not out of choice but I arrived late. No Garmin either, I just had the printed route that I laminated and 2 OS maps just in case. I can understand you and others preferring to ride alone. We are all different, good job too!

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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby Merry_Wanderer » 7 Dec 2014, 12:48pm

Audax67, It's not the saddle that's the problem with me, the Brooks Imperial is the best one that I have ever had. Great comfort and my backside was fine after 72 miles whereas the 78 miles I had done 2 years ago on a different bike left me crippled! I have only done a handful of 60+ mile rides and neither by brain or body would cope with the extra time on the bike at the moment. I need to work on my food intake too as I ran out of energy at 52 miles. That said, I will be doing some longer audaxes in 2015 with the aim of doing a 200 (120 miles in real money) by next autumn. Maybe as time progresses and my fitness and stamina improve I could look seriously at LEL or PBP. Right now the prospect of a 300 would seem bonkers!

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Tail End Charlie
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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby Tail End Charlie » 8 Dec 2014, 9:54am

Merry Wanderer, if you've got the saddle sorted that's more than half the battle. After that it's just a case of putting in some long rides. On the Audax itself you'll be able to go further than you've done before. Even after a bit of a winter lay off I find the first couple hard work and can't think of going further, but fitness soon builds up. That said, I don't do the extra long rides, hilly 100 or 200s are my preference, in fact there seems a belief that all Audaxers aspire to PBP, they don't, it's not obligatory.
I can see why an Audax is not everyone's cup of tea, the time limits can add pressure, but they are a great way of seeing an area using a route planned by someone with local knowledge and meeting like minded people.

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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby PH » 8 Dec 2014, 10:52am

Mick F wrote:I did my first Audax last May.
I sussed this out as soon as I got the download, and spent ages re-creating the proper route manually on BikeHike with due regard to the written instructions. Consequently, I followed the exact route, but some folk took "short cuts". :lol: :lol: I'm sure they didn't do it deliberately, but maybe because their Garmins had made their own minds up.


There are no shortcuts, the route is recommended but not compulsory. Going to all the controls within the timescale is all that's required to complete the event. Try it and see, it shouldn't be possible to ride any route between them less than the nominal distance, in this case 150km.
People make of Audax what they want, but for many it's about the challenge, I can't imagine that this route challenged you much, so you may well have missed the point.

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Mick F
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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby Mick F » 8 Dec 2014, 11:18am

Thanks PH.
I reckon there would have been loads of shortcuts on Leg Two and Leg Three.
Had I known the route wasn't compulsory, I'd have cut out lots of it. :lol:
Leg One.png
Leg Two.png
Leg Three.png
Mick F. Cornwall

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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby Bicycler » 8 Dec 2014, 11:38am

I've never done one but surely much of the fun comes from following a route through a part of the country which is new to you chosen by a cyclist who knows the area. Sure, you could cut out these twisty lanes and that big hill and ride down that nice flat dual carriageway but wouldn't you be missing out on something? The fun of finding out what the organiser has planned for you. I bet some get right mischievous! The fun of interacting with others doing the same ride. If it comes down to just getting your head down and riding a distance you could do that on a flippin turbo trainer

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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby ChrisButch » 8 Dec 2014, 12:07pm

Tail End Charlie wrote: That said, I don't do the extra long rides, hilly 100 or 200s are my preference, in fact there seems a belief that all Audaxers aspire to PBP, they don't, it's not obligatory.

Ditto. I'm sure I'm not alone in being unable to contemplate the sleep deprivation associated with the long distances, which does require a special aptitude, irrelevant to cycling ability, to cope with. I know those who manage with nothing more than the legendary bus-shelter catnaps make light of it - but they would do, since they clearly have that aptitude. For those who don't, it's an uncrossable barrier. For that reason 300 was my absolute limit, and mostly I rode 200s or 100s from which there are, as you say, rewards enough.

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TrevA
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Re: Enjoyable Audax

Postby TrevA » 8 Dec 2014, 12:25pm

I'm another regular audaxer who mainky sticks to 100's with the occasional 160 or 200 thrown in. Audax for me is the chance to ride on some different roads, on a route provided by someone who is familiar with the area and knows the best roads to ride on. I do like to ride in a group, but if i find it's too fast I'll drop off and if it's too slow I'll press on ahead. You can end up riding in 3 or 4 different groups over the course of a 100k.

Sure you might be able to take a short cut here and there, but what's the point? You are only cheating yourself. I've never felt under time pressure and can usually manage to get round a 100k well within the time, including 2 cafe stops, unless it's really hilly. My fastest 100k is about 4h 20 and my slowest is 6h 15.

My best 200 is 10h 20 but i was completely shattered afterwards.