Starting this because I’m giving my first ride (in 2.5 weeks) a shot tomorrow and will be my first turn of the cranks towards Leadville 2024.
My 2023 journey ended with a Covid diagnosis 10 days before the race while I was staying in Frisco. It hit me hard and I’m still at best 90%. Even though Leadville had to be deferred, 2023 was a great turn around for me healthwise as I went from 185 lbs to just under 160 by the time I left for Colorado. I got to ride the entire course and my medium effort climbs (~1:27 on columbine) along with a 6:18Lusten/purple corral suggested sub 9:00 was on the edge of what was possible but would be a long shot.
This year I’ll be shooting for the red corral start from my prep races and a big belt buckleon race day. Excited to begin the journey again and especially excited for the stage race next year that my wife will be doing alongside me.
Well, being that it’s out there, I’ll tag in. I’m registered for 2024, and have a house booked 10 minutes outside of the downtown.
@CuyunaMtB - Covid for me I took 2 weeks full off the bike not being able to do anything. Week 3 was very easy endurance. Week 4 I added some intervals but my heart rate was still artificially high, like setting new Max HR records when I shouldn’t be close. Week 5 was the first time where I felt pretty much back to normal. Take it easy and don’t rush it at this point. I was in the same boat missing my A race last year, coming down with it days before the race (Barn Burner). Good luck!
(Let’s keep all the discussion of this year’s race going in the 2023 thread so we’re not doubling up)
99% sure I’m in for 2024. It will be our 6th year in a row heading to Leadville in July/August to get out of the Texas summer heat. Even if I wasn’t racing, I’d be up there for race week and enjoying the high mountains. It’s still well over 100f in TX for the foreseeable future, I’ve been mostly hiding in the house this week and wishing I was back in the mountains. Long group ride tomorrow will be a shock to the system for sure.
I’ll be there if I can get in but I have pretty low expectations about that due to the Lifetime digital registration BS.
I love the event, the town, and the people closest to the race. Since my first time in 2018 I’ve seen a lot of changes to the race and the qualifying series. Some good, others bad. It’s not black and white, but I’m not going to spend thousands of dollars extra to buy my way in just because they’ve made previously reliable means like qualifiers to be much more of a crapshoot. No disrespect to anyone at all who chooses to go that route, I did charity slot in 2021 after they completely screwed me on my 2020 COVID cancellation deferral process.
Thankfully Breck Epic is a fantastic yet brutal plan B so I’ll be back there if I can’t get into LT100 via lottery or Silver Rush again.
I think the camp is a great idea. Either that, or get out there on your own sometime before the race just to see how you deal with altitude. The camp is nice because you ride the full course over two days, big group of people, and it’s supported with aid stations, course marking, etc. I met a great group of people that I’ll probably end up traveling to do future events with in different areas of the country.
Lifting I don’t think you need a ton. I am a fan of upper body endurance: Pushups, Pullups, Planks, Flutter Kicks, Battle Rope type of workouts. Stability pushups I’ll work in this year. Lower body squats and deadlifts. If you don’t want to add size and just strength, the trick is low reps, heavy weight (3-5 sets of 3-5 reps).
From a muscle fatigue perspective what impacted me this year was not my legs. Lower / outside of my back just above the glutes didn’t impact me on the bike, but as soon as I was done I could hardly bend over. Arms, shoulders, hands for the descents.
Thanks for the feedback on the camp and on strength training! I know that lower back and glutes are weak areas for me. Doing mostly trainer rides and then hitting steep hills makes that painfully obvious to me and makes me super stiff like you said.
I’m 95% sure that I’ll do the training camp. It seems like for the camp it would make sense to stay in Leadville? Do you (or anyone else) have suggestions on lodging options? It would be just me and not the whole family for that trip so all I really need is somewhere clean and comfortable.
I used AirBnB, although prices are going up so you’d be advised to book early. Places for the race next August are already getting reserved, I reserved one 10 minutes outside of town because I got a lot more for the $$$.
Copper and Frisco are 25 & 30 minutes away, Breckenridge maybe another 10 minutes past Frisco too and plenty of options in those locations.
One of the big changes I made in my training this year was less time on the trainer and more time outside riding steep hills in the heat and humidity. For me, that meant doing workouts at lower power numbers and/or shorter intervals, but resulted in better fatigue resistance on the long grinding climbs at leadville. Watts are not always watts, it’s always been much easier for me to put out power on the trainer where I can spin a high steady cadence and have better cooling. I’m a long time indoor trainer guy who would almost always do my tuesday/Thursday hard intervals on the trainer, but doing more of the outdoor stuff has definitely has made me a better climber (even at a lower FTP).
+1 on the comments related to the importance of core work. This was also the first year doing consistent core work and I felt so much better/stronger on the bike at the end of long events.
I’ve yet to get in via lottery, and I don’t suspect that I will this year either, so I plan on getting in on merit by getting on my age group podium at the Silver Rush 50, or maybe getting that coin on the run at the start. I was about 10th to 12th in 2021 even tho I wasn’t really that fit, that year - 5:09 fwiw.
Just keep in mind that a podium no longer guarantees a coin, it depends on number of coins, how many racers in your age group, etc. The only guarantee is winning your age group. I remember back when they would go 5+ deep for the 40+ and 50+ men many years ago. Last year at Austin Rattler, they only went 1 deep in all groups. This year, most groups were 1 deep, but they went 3 deep in 40+ and 50+ mens (w/ similar field sizes as last year), so I’m not sure there are hard and fast rules for how they allocate the coins. I race 50+ and I’ve gotten a coin for a podium once, but I’m typically lingering around top 10 (no shot at coin, but good for decent corral).