Having got here I realised running a 30:42 as my easiest gear was not at all suitable and to have so many steep climbs on the first day combined with the heat almost finished me off. I limped home after walking lots of the climbs. Spoke to the mechanics and they agreed to source some spares to let me run a bigger cassette at the back but it wouldn’t be until after day 2.
I quite enjoyed day 2, the first half was nice and rolling (comparatively speaking) and the wet climb was half push half ride. We made it unto the last feed station to be told to turn round and go back on the road. That was fine as it was pretty bad, I had full wet weather gear but lots of people were wrapped up in survival blankets starting to look a little blue.
Today got new gearing and really enjoyed the big climb, about 100/200 meters from the top my gears started skipping and at the top I noticed my chain had broken. Someone very kindly helped my fix it and then I enjoyed the downs.
Tomorrow could be interesting. Long but lots of down hill and a 30km road stretch but still a fair amount of climbing!
Wow. That is like running a 36 with an Eagle set. 6wkg pro territory. Never seen it even in one day marathons.
Tomorrow has a long untimed road section. Plays into my hand because I have to stop at feed zones and people I ride with have support. They disappear and I am left to push alone. Also flats are not my territory so good to avoid racing them.
Yes, there will be some small crashes.
These are natural paths and not cycling trails. An s3 trail is technical but bike proven. These natural passages are cleared for one time usage and can be awkward. I will be smoked there against my technically superior mates.
A quick summary / reflections around the preperation for this event;
:- Most weeks though the winter were 7-10hrs on the trainer (used plan builder) plus 2 gym sessions
:- Weekly TSS was around the 500mark
:- I did a long ride (5hrs) every other month with my partner
:- SInce April most riding has been outside (still only 2hrs per ride) and has been sweetspot / threashold
Despite my concern over lack of long rides it prepared me well for the event.
:- We moved from 17th overall (Grand Masters) after stage 1 to 10th overall by stage 7.
:- Total riding time for 7 days was 40hrs, 20mins
:- Only issues were 2 punctures and helping someone else with a broken chain (total 15mins)
I felt strong (relatively) through the whole event and only had a few bad patches. I still felt strong on day 7 (maybe I didn’t go hard enough earlier in the week )
I guess for me the conclusion is, you don’t need to do long training rides if you want to do OK in a long event.
It was a great event and I’d recomend anyone do a stage race just once in their life.
I have been getting really tired about 8.30/9 everything night and like you guys been really hungry constantly.
been riding about 8km to and from work every day and body feels fine. Was planning to try and do a session today and see how the legs feel.
What I am finding hard is the “what’s next” for pretty much a year I have had this event to think about, be it training, thinking about equipment etc but now I feel a bit directionless.
I doubt I can get a similar scale event booked for next year, with 2 youngsters being away for 9 days is a lot but really feel I need something to aim for otherwise diet, alcohol consumption and training are likely to go out the window.
Any suggestions for something to keep me motivated??
@blind76 I know of lots of other people that tested positive towards the end of the ride or once they got home.
great event which was pretty well organised, couple of bumps with hotels etc but really nothing much to moan about. I really suffered in the heat and could have done with being a few Kg lighter which I knew about but my sweet tooth was always going to win!
Considering all the other pressures in life I am really pleased to finish with the training I was able to fit around life. I didn’t spend as much time as I had hoped in the saddle. As the week went on I was feeling stronger and finished about 50th in the masters singles. Saying that, I lost 2-3 hours in the first 3 days with mechanicals and having to walk due to gearing issues.
Having had COVID 2 weeks before the event I think I will take it as a positive!
I can relate to that. I’ve been building up for this since 2020. However I’m not sure I’m enjoying the directionless feeling or missing the planning. Decided to give myself until the end of August to decide what (if anything) is next.