Hello All! Sorry for my absence. I spent winter break in Europe (without bicycle). Before that I have completed SSBI&II. I have 24 hours to decide if I want to claim a spot as solo rider for 24IHOP. I really want to do this - but the longest I have been on a bike so far is 8:50 hours. I am also not sure how to train for this. Starting Friday, I will be back on the trainer and can add some outdoor riding (only little due to weather). I would love for you experienced riders to hear your input on (1) whether I should take it and (2) how to get ready for it. Thank you so much!
Having done a few 24 hour races I would say there are three areas you need to consider.
Physical fitness - Do you have the base level of fitness built up to ride for an extended period of time, can you pace yourself at a lower level of intensity over a much longer period?
Mental toughness - You are going to hit some low points, fatigue, cold, the odd crash, the fluctuations in your circadian rhythm all adding to that, when you hit those temporary blips do you haave a coping mechanism to get yourself through…it’s hard to develop it without experiencing it
support and logistics - If you don’t have a pit crew then a 24 hour solo goes from tough to insanely hard… you need them to prepare food and drink, motivate you, help with mechanical issues etc. etc etc.
Think about those three areas and decide if you have enough in each one to make the event achievable, you also need to consider your aims. As a first time 24 hour racer do you just want to experience it and finish, get a good result or top your category? My first race of this kind I stopped after 19 hours, but I learned a hell of a lot.
If you have to ask me whether or not you should take it you should probably not take it.
If you want to do an endurance race you know it for sure. You might be nervous. You might be scared. You might be intimidated. But, for sure, you know, ‘This is something I want to do.’
Leave that spot for somebody who would kill or die to take it.
BTW, it’s normal to not want to do it. Don’t sweat it.
I really want to do this
There’s your answer. Now it’s only about logistics, and with TR also doing 24HOP for sure they will be discussing it more over the next few podcasts and there are also a lot of videos/ride-reports out there of how people approached it the first time and where things fell apart for them.
I can’t speak from experience as I’ve never been able to go, but if you have the opportunity to do it… I say jump on it and embrace the experience!
If you really want to do it, go for it. But ask yourself are you racing for a podium or out to learn about yourself and your limits and have a little fun at the same time. A podium spot in a solo 24 will push the limits of any person 3rd place last year solo male was 272 miles, 1st was 320. mental toughness, hydration, and caloric intake play a huge part.
Do it, have fun and learn a lot about yourself…