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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    350

    Training for ACL5

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    I am riding the ACL5 with a group, they are not regular cyclists, they just want to participate so riding isn't their focus. I think I am just weird or something, you tell me. One of the gals rides her bike once every few days, no more than 5 or 6 miles. Recently she went with another group, I couldn't go I was really sick. She never made it over 9 miles per hour. She also would pedal a little, then coast, then pedal then coast. The ride leader tried to coach her and told her that if she was going to try to ride 585 miles, she needed to at least break a sweat. She would just nod and then coast, pedal, smile, nod, coast. Now maybe I shouldn't care, but if I were walking around telling people to help me raise money cuz I was riding 585 miles, I'd feel bad knowing I plan to ride only partially each day then get picked up by a relief truck. I just feel like they should try a little.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    North Andover, Massachusetts USA
    Posts
    1,643
    I don't think you're weird at all - I wouldn't attempt to do a ride like that without training for it!

    I'd be careful about committing to ride ACL5 with people who have no intention of training for it though. Your expectations of riding the distance nicely may very well clash with their style...

    I had an experience on an MS ride many years ago (back in the days when I still did large group rides...) - not the same, but one where the other individual expected something that I couldn't deliver. I am not a fast rider but I am consistent, and I can keep going forever. I had a co-worker ask if we could ride together on this 2-day MS ride. My response was yes, but! I told her my average speed, knowing that hers was quite a bit faster than mine. I suggested that we share a room but explained about our distance in speed & told her that I wouldn't be able to keep up with her pace. She said that she would ride my pace. OK, ride starts, and she clearly wanted to ride faster. I reminded her that I was fine with her taking off if she wanted to. We encountered some faster riders, and she decided to head out with them. No problem from my standpoint. The problem? I ended up finishing the day's ride a good 2 1/2 hours before she did. She and her group rode fast, then stopped and lounged at every food stop. I rode my slower pace, stopped for food, water, and bathroom breaks - then got back on my bike. And at the end of the day, she was totally pissed (at me!) that I finished earlier than she did! All I could do was laugh...

    Long story, I know - just don't want to see you end up in a situation like that!

    --- Denise
    Last edited by DeniseGoldberg; 12-15-2005 at 07:49 PM.
    www.denisegoldberg.com

    • Click here for links to journals and photo galleries from my travels on two wheels and two feet.
    • Random thoughts and experiences in my blog at denisegoldberg.blogspot.com


    "To truly find yourself you should play hide and seek alone."
    (quote courtesy of an unknown fortune cookie writer)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    350
    I feel like you do. I do not ride fast, but have good endurance. So I often finish with everyone else, but am less tired, etc. I guess what bugs me is that they seem to not even want to try a little. It also bugs me that they are touting the miles to people without the intention of even doing the miles. Additionally they keep asking me to help them train and then don't follow thru on their own. One time it took us 6 hours to ride 38 miles, I was exasperated. I wanted to train and wound up baby sitting, cuz they kept stoppping and they didn't want to pedal. There were times were this one gal would not even try to pedal up a very small 50 foot hill, very small I might add. She got off her bike and walked up.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Mrs. KnottedYet
    Posts
    8,983

    subliminal hint: base miles base miles

    AGC and all the TE riders,

    First off congratulations on your commitment to doing this thing, it's a great cause and you're all in for a wonderful experience.

    As for your ride buddies, while i don't suggest that you ditch them friendship wise or emotionaly or encouragement wise but you have to do what's safe and right for you as a rider.

    While anything could happen to prevent you from logging every mile, kamikaze squirels, you name it, stuff happens but you should train, equip, maintain your bike and body with the goal of doing the full ride.

    It's a ride not a race so what Denise said: manage your time at rest stops (if you stop and looligag you'll get cold and that'll be it for your day) and set a pace you can maintain the whole day, the whole ride.

    Listen to the TE gals and you will do fine!!

    Get yourself onto "official" ALC training rides, ride with a local bike club, lift and cross train. Talk to BG she did a great training program and was one of the first in each day. My goal last year was to train well *over* 3 times the distance and altitude gain of ALC and then treat the ride itself like a 7 day recovery ride.

    Your friends will be fine, plenty of people at the back of the pack (like me) ride your own ride.

    Then on Day 1 you'll have done the hard part, rigorous training and fundraising which is especially hard this year due to the tragedy in the Katrina states and other needs. Anyway on the ride I watched the HRM, ate everything and anything they put in front of me, hydrated and rode all but 10 miles. I think if you add in distance in and outa rest stops...I was there.

    But you gotta do the work first.

    It's a hard ride, if you're not ready for it this becomes a safety issue for you, the crew and other riders. If you're that tired you could become innatentive or worse.

    The crew and support are incredible, best I've ever seen, I've crewed and know how hard they work. Rideing to LA is easier, trus me, thank them every chance you get. I decided is the best thing I could do to help them is to not need them!

    I'm not saying this to alarm you in any way, but the crew will pull the ride if their resources are stretched to the point they can't assure the safety of all. I told my sponsors "last year i bonked on day 3 this year i will ride every mile" so part of it is personal commitment, I don't set a goal to fall short, I set goals to acheive them.

    No one will fault your friend, you or anyone for sagging the ride, fact is knowng your limits sometimes is the halmark of a good athlete. If you try your best and don't finish every mile you've still accomplished so much.

    But stop at the first pit each day and you'll miss rest stop 4, and I wanna hear from all of you what they do each day this year! And you'll miss the kids that come out and the disco in the streets and you'll miss either being one of the first into camp and cheering the others as they arrive or what's better the ride into camp at Ventura where you literally ride through the camp. On ALC 3 i was the 2nd to the last in that day, 2 flats yeah right, I'm just slow. And I regret that I did not hang back with Sharon the last rider to come in together (sharon? you lurking? good job).

    PS: I was planning on dropping in on the 17 mile SF ride this weekend, gotta work 8-( SF TE gals I'll try to be out there on a training ride soon. And I plan to see you all on Day 0.
    Last edited by Trek420; 12-15-2005 at 02:04 PM.
    Custom Road bike ~ Mondonico Futura Legero
    Found on the road ~ Motobecane Mixte
    N+1 new bike ~ Salsa Vaya
    Commuter ~ Soma Buena Vista Mixte

    http://madeinusareviews.blogspot.com/

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Bay Area, CA
    Posts
    1,351
    Hey ACG - that situation sounds frustrating - I guess my advice would be along the lines of what everyone else is saying, but also, mentally, I think what is helping me is to have been riding with people who have a lot of enthusaism for the ride (and for me signing up for and doing the ride!) and I think the shared enthusiasm and sense a personal "stretch" is really helpful to me. From what have heard from friends who have done it year after year is that, of course, physical training is a huge part of a "successful" ride (whatever success means with respect to each person's goals) but that so much of it is mental and emotional. I hope you can find a group to train with that shares your enthusiam and commitment, as well as compatible riding styles. Good luck!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Benicia, CA
    Posts
    1,320
    ACG- Everything that TREK says about the ride is absolutely true! Send me an email and I"ll send you Cat's email. She is the interpreter for the deaf on the ride and lives in So Cal. I"m sure she can give you some suggestions as to who you can train with down there.

    Also, do as many organized rides as you can. This means starting as soon as you can- perhaps the ride in Palm Springs (I think that's in Jan or Feb) as a good beginner as it is flat and there are a few options on the distance.

    Work up to metric centuries and then century rides as these are distances you will be covering on the actual ride. You need to build your endurance. The only way to build endurance is to ride long rides. There just isn't any other option. I did weight training as well (for upper body strength)and I rode at least 4 and sometimes 5 times a week.

    Riding for 7 days is hard work no matter how you look at it. Although the rest stops are fun and keep the daily ride interesting, you have to have the mental stamina to do this ride successfully.

    How is your fund raising going? If you can get your minimum of $2500. done sooner than later, you can then concentrate on training. I trained AND raised money all the time. When I reached $2500, I raised my goal as I wanted to include as many people on my sponsoring team as I could. Please feel free to contact me for support. Of course, this goes for anyone on this site who is participating.
    Nancy

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Mrs. KnottedYet
    Posts
    8,983

    subliminal hint: base miles, base miles, base miles

    ACG and all, everything that Bike Goddess says about the ride is absolutely true! Especially:

    "Riding for 7 days is hard work no matter how you look at it. Although the rest stops are fun and keep the daily ride interesting, you have to have the mental stamina to do this ride successfully."

    I find it's not so much the miles, well it IS the miles, but it's the back to back to back'ness of it all. My cousin and his DP do double centuries often and he scoffs at the idea of this ride. Not scoffs really, just "too easy" for us, we do doubles".

    Alrighty then what do you do the day after?

    "Sleep"

    OK ;-)

    On ALC or any multi day tour you'll get up and do it again and again.... So work on recovery, stay fed, hydrated and comfy.

    I don't know if this is correct but last year Spazzdog had me do hill repeats or jumps once a week *the last 3 months before the ride* (not yet, I'd stay with the subliminal hint unless you're already doing this).

    I credit her tip with better ability to recover.

    What BG says, the rest stops are fun but you'll get in and outa them, maybe 15 minutes at rest and water stops and 1/2 hour at lunch, tops. If you spend more time you'll get cold, stiff.
    Custom Road bike ~ Mondonico Futura Legero
    Found on the road ~ Motobecane Mixte
    N+1 new bike ~ Salsa Vaya
    Commuter ~ Soma Buena Vista Mixte

    http://madeinusareviews.blogspot.com/

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    350
    THANKS! to all. I am frustrated with this group, especially the one gal. (She recently told our Xerox rep that she trains all the time) Yet I've come to realize that is her problem. I am training with a group that is not riding ACL5 but wants ME to do well. They have been really encouraging, even trying new routes that they hope will help me improve my skills. The other group, I'll participate in fundraisers, etc. but am going to limit my training rides with them. Selfishly, if I have 6 hours blocked for training, I'm training, not coaching people who don't really want to ride.

    Everyone has told me to pace myself, and not worry about other people. I've also taken a few other steps, bought a new bike, am collecting lots of clothing, gear, cross train, etc. I don't want to finish first, I just want to finish. And I've already raised $825.00. The gals of TE are the best encouragement, thanks to all!!!!!!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Mrs. KnottedYet
    Posts
    8,983

    30 mile Union city ALC ride report

    This was my first organized ride of the year.

    It was cold when I set out from home, cold enough to have 2nd thoughts (did I mention I hate cold?). But I'd told myself I'd get to some ALC training rides and with one starting 1 BART station down I had to do that.

    By the time I arrived it was turning into a beautiful day. We had 18 riders including a few newbies.

    After the obligatory safety speech we set out.

    There was an odd kid, with his mountain bike, not an ALC rider, no helmet who watched us gather and decided to ride with us. One thing odd about this kid is that his face had this palor, grey almost. We were a diverse group of men, women all different ages but we all had that "glow of health". He just wanted to ride with and his frequent cheery "I'm keeping up with you!" were amusing.

    He was doing the frustrating and unnerving "ride his pace and then whenver a women passed him struggle and pedal wildly to pass or keep up" thing.

    What was not amusing was when I passed him on a hill on Coyote Hills park, called out started to pass and he looked back at me (can't hold a line) and started to move to his left right smack into me.

    I like to think I'm an extremely polite and calm cyclist...he's probably off somewhere trying to recover his hearing in his left ear now.

    At the coffee/regroup stop I talked to a couple gals about TE board (yes, we recruit on TE). If you're lurking, howdy!

    There was some confusion about the route as we left and uhm some people took a wrong turn and another group of 3 slower or just more relaxed men got off route so we were split in 3 groups.

    I stayed with Russ the leader and we got back the rest were not far behind us.

    ACG, Bikerz, Hill Slug, liksani, Shadon, how's the training goin'?
    Last edited by Trek420; 01-22-2006 at 05:10 PM.
    Custom Road bike ~ Mondonico Futura Legero
    Found on the road ~ Motobecane Mixte
    N+1 new bike ~ Salsa Vaya
    Commuter ~ Soma Buena Vista Mixte

    http://madeinusareviews.blogspot.com/

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    San Jose, CA
    Posts
    66
    Haha. Just started training, I was one of the newbies on the ALC ride that was with the people who took a wrong turn. Was lots of fun tho.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Mrs. KnottedYet
    Posts
    8,983
    OMG this is too funny. OK, so you weren't either one of the gals I talked to about TE or you probably would have said "I'm already there"....and you weren't Red or was it Orange mtb and Sidi's gal, the one who made the "T'Cells on the move" stickers because she was on the ride last year (notice how on this board we can't remember names but we remember what bike shoes you are wearing...oh that's just me?)

    ok, I'm the short, chubby gal, dark hair, glasses, silver/plum Mondonico road bike, dressed like it's the arctic, grey tights, Lifecycle vest, pink arm warmers, pink helmet, Impeach Bush bike socks.

    I'm really really bad with names were you the gal who stopped in Coyote Hills park, you were having some trouble with your shifting? Silver Specialized (?) with rack on the back?

    You done real good!! I hear your variation of the route included a hill?
    Custom Road bike ~ Mondonico Futura Legero
    Found on the road ~ Motobecane Mixte
    N+1 new bike ~ Salsa Vaya
    Commuter ~ Soma Buena Vista Mixte

    http://madeinusareviews.blogspot.com/

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    San Jose, CA
    Posts
    66
    Yeah I was the girl who stopped in Coyote Hills Park cuz I was having trouble with shifting. Black Specialized w/rack. So you probably already have an idea of who I am vaguely. I'm short and asian and female, I think that should narrow it all totally down.

    And yeah we went up a hill with a headwind.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Mrs. KnottedYet
    Posts
    8,983
    liksani "we went up a hill with a headwind. "

    on your first organised ride? that was billed as "flat and easy"? with no toe-clips or clipless that I could see?

    After Helga gets done with it...the Princess She-Ra tiara goes to....liksani

    ya' done good.

    where'd I see that, ah, click here for info on chain, shifting problems http://forums.teamestrogen.com/showt...operator+error

    when's your next planned training ride? Maybe have you TE gals get together?
    Last edited by Trek420; 01-23-2006 at 11:01 AM.
    Custom Road bike ~ Mondonico Futura Legero
    Found on the road ~ Motobecane Mixte
    N+1 new bike ~ Salsa Vaya
    Commuter ~ Soma Buena Vista Mixte

    http://madeinusareviews.blogspot.com/

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    San Jose, CA
    Posts
    66
    haha.. yeah it was probably the first time i biked any sort of distance. i don't really bike. was gonna possibly go snowboarding again this weekend, but i think that's a no go. so sort of debating between the alc ride in palo alto on sat, a south bay velo girls ride, or the alc ride in sunnyvale on sun. :O

    just trying to figure out if i'll be able to go to practice sat night if i bike on sat morning. tho i do think i should probably get bike shorts at least.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Mrs. KnottedYet
    Posts
    8,983
    liksani wrote "yeah it was probably the first time i biked any sort of distance. i don't really bike. "

    but ya do now ;-) welcome to the tribe, resistance is futile bwah hah hah

    how do you feel today?

    "just trying to figure out if i'll be able to go to practice sat night ..."

    Practice? From the stretches you were doing after the ride I'm guessing some kind of martial art?

    "....debating between the alc ride in palo alto on sat, a south bay velo girls ride, or the alc ride in sunnyvale on sun. :O"

    let us know, maybe some of the gals here will join you.

    "...i do think i should probably get bike shorts at least. "

    oh yeah, get the best bike shorts you can afford. are you going to get bike shoes? even if you don't go clipless, they really help.
    Custom Road bike ~ Mondonico Futura Legero
    Found on the road ~ Motobecane Mixte
    N+1 new bike ~ Salsa Vaya
    Commuter ~ Soma Buena Vista Mixte

    http://madeinusareviews.blogspot.com/

 

 

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