Wow, we made it, 100 shows on the Endurance QuickCast! For the most part the Endurance QuickCast is a solo effort with contributions from Coach Kelli and the occasional Guest and of course the amazing financial support from our show sponsor Funk Away.
Thank you, to all of our listeners for all of your words of encouragement, sharing the show, your excellent reviews and rating at iTunes and for your questions since we started back to podcasting in November of 2015. I also want to say thanks to all of the new listeners! We have almost doubled the number of listeners this month over last month! Thank you for helping me to get closer to my show goals for the 2017 season. We are going to be close but I think we can even exceed the goals I set for 2017. So don’t hold back share the show links everybody!!!
I know you didn’t tune in today to listen to my gushing about show statistics so lets get going. This is the 100th show for the Endurance Quick Cast and as promised I am going to cover quite a bit on riding centuries whether you want to attempt a metric or standard century I have LOTS of info to share with you. I know for some of you a Century is a bucket list ride or maybe you are a regular to riding centuries but want to finish your next one much faster. So don’t worry I am going to cover quite a bit today for beginners, intermediates and even elite listeners!
Before we start I have a couple of quick notes…
Note: Before you get out pencil and paper for the show I want to let everyone know that that this show will have extensive show notes. To find the show notes simply go to PositivePerformanceCoaching.com/blog/ or search for the show title on our website.
Note: While you may have missed out on the initial free offering of our 10 Week Century Training Plan you can still get a free one! Go to PositivePerformanceCoaching.com and register for our new newsletter and I will contact you directly to give you the necessary information to receive the 10-week plan available on TrainingPeaks.com. Don’t have a TrainingPeaks.com account? No worries I will set you up with your very own free account! This offer ends July 31st 2017 at midnight Eastern Standard Time.
Yes there is a new newsletter in the works. Currently the plan is to share recent articles, show links, offers, and endurance related news in our new monthly newsletter. If there seems to be more interest in the newsletter I will likely release a newsletter every 2 weeks. If you have items you would like to see in a newsletter let me know by going to the website and selecting the contact us page under the about menu.
All right so back on to the topic of riding centuries here is what we are going to cover today:
- Beginner Guidance
- Intermediate and Elite Guidance
- Items to take along for the ride
- Selecting the appropriate century to ride
- Some do’s and don’ts of riding with large groups
Sounds like a pretty simple list compared to some other shows. I promise there will be details!
For those new to centuries here is a little primer. A century is simply a measure of distance. 100km and 100miles are the typical century measures where 100km is referred to as a metric century and 100miles is referred to as a standard century. I have even heard the 100mi distance referred to as an American Century. In either case centuries are nothing more than a measure of distance. You can ride solo or in a large group, as an individual time trial or as a road race. Today we are going to primarily talk about what it means to just ride a century. I may interject some guidance as it pertains to those of you preparing for a TT or Road Race.
This isn’t the first time I have covered the topic of centuries as I have talked about this extensively on an older podcast I am no longer involved with. So you may hear some things from that older show but I promise to bring much more to this show!
Let’s get started on the details….
What should all levels of cyclists have ready before heading out for the long ride?
Get the bike ready!
- When you should and shouldn’t work on the bike
- Clean the bike
- Get the bike tuned up
- Replace worn parts such as chains, cassettes, chain rings, cables, bar tape and brake pads
- Replace batteries and make sure all devices are charged
Other items you might want to update or replace
- Jersey, bibs, gloves, socks, shoes, cleats, helmet and sunglasses
Get yourself ready!
- Ride and ride some more
- If riding in a race or event century other than an ITT ride with groups well in advance especially if you are not used to riding in tight groups of cyclists.
- All cyclists (optimal) should start training 10-12 weeks in advance of their first century.
- All cyclists (time limited) should start training 6-8 weeks in advance of their first century.
- Beginners can get away with riding 4-5 days a week
- Beginners will ride at least 30-40 miles once on a weekday and should schedule a 60-70 mile ride on the weekend.
- Early in training all riders should only increase mileage by 5-10% a week and later in the training schedule will increase mileage 15-20% a week.
- Beginners should focus mostly on getting comfortable with the saddle time but could gain some benefit by working on higher cadence riding.
- Intermediate and Elite riders will often train 5-6 and sometimes 7 days a week
- Intermediate and Elite riders will ride at least 30-50 miles once or twice on a weekday and will often schedule two 70-100 mile rides on the weekend.
- Intermediate and Elite riders may want to focus on 1-2 training factors that have been determined as weaknesses or areas that need improvement or if you like the areas that are holding you back from meeting your century goals.
- Intermediate and Elite riders will utilize interval-based training typically during the week and ride at an endurance and or tempo pace on the weekends.
- Beginners with limited time to train may also benefit from interval based training during the week but the emphasis on the long steady ride should still be placed on the weekends.
- Depending on the course makeup of your century, hills, mountains, flats or a mix will often be the best determiner of what types of intervals you should be completing.
- Training factors to consider for different terrains when selecting your own workouts
- For mountain based centuries a focus on Force, Muscle Endurance and power
- For rolling terrain centuries a focus Force, Power and Speed
- For flatter terrain centuries a focus on Power, Speed and Endurance
- My favorite workout to build power
- My favorite workout to build force
- My favorite workout to build speed
- My favorite workout to build muscle endurance
- My favorite workout to build endurance
What does one bring to a century?
Most event or club hosted centuries and races are supported. Meaning that there are volunteers there to help you with your bike, registration, and directions, in some cases breakdowns and food and fluids. However I have always treated such events and races as only self-supported. This has allowed me to save time and instill confidence in my performances. So what do you need to do to be a self-supported athlete in a century?
I bring my own tools
- Tire tools, patch kit/tube, pump/co2 air, small multi tool, missing link
- A fully charged smart phone
- Paper and Digital map of the route
I bring my own fuel
- I may start with solid foods (bars and sandwiches)
- 3 hours in switch to gels and or bananas
- I will take a sip off of my sports bottle every 5 minutes (slow Drip Fueling)
- I drink at least 20-24 oz. of sports drink an hour!
- What is in my sports drink?
- I NEVER experiment with fuel the day of an event ride or race!
I wear the appropriate kit
- I dress for the weather
- I where sunscreen no matter the temp
- I choose comfort over speed
- I select the right helmet and sun glasses
- I will use chamois cream
Selecting the appropriate century to ride
Selecting your first century route can mean the difference between a great time and heading back in the SAG van. Selecting a route that plays to your strengths rather than your weaknesses can also mean finally capturing that dream PR!
If you are a beginner and have never completed a century or maybe you have completed one or more centuries I suggest…
- Register for an organized and supported century
- Make sure that the course profile matches your current ability level!
- Talk to other riders along the way!
- Keep your eyes and mind open!
If you are an intermediate or elite cyclist that had ridden one or two centuries I still recommend that you follow the same guidance as for the beginners!
If you are an intermediate or elite cyclist that had ridden many centuries or is trying to train or race at this distance or is trying to capture a PR I suggest the following.
- Register for an organized and supported century
- If going solo make sure there are stores or hidden fuel drops along the way
- Try to plan your ride with favorable weather conditions
- Make sure your route favors your strengths if you are trying to capture a PR or you plan on racing at this distance
- If you are training you may want to select a course that is a bit more difficult. Especially when it comes to climbing. However beware of long technical courses that require lots of technical descending if you are not comfortable with descending.
Some dos and don’ts of riding in large groups
The list of items I am about to share with you was observations that I wrote about years ago when I participated in a very large organized century. I have included a few others from recent observations and some of what I consider to be general knowledge but may not be to some listeners.
Want to add to the list let me know!
- Ride within your limits
- Know where significant course features are on the route
- Stop at SAGS only when absolutely necessary
- Pace line leaders are RESPONSIBLE for calling out road hazards. NO EXCEPTIONS!
- Do not ride in a pace line with your head down! Always be looking over the shoulder ahead of you.
- When pulling off the front of a pace line keep the space tight so that you benefit from more of a drift when you drift back.
- When its your turn to work at the front of a pace line maintain the speed set before you pull in. DO NOT SURGE!
- Eat, drink and blow your nose at the back of a pace line, PLEASE!
- Do not look down to get your sports bottle out to drink
- Do not take “selfies” in the peloton!
- Do not trust unfamiliar cyclists “to do the right thing” in your pace line
- Do not stare and make comments at those taking bio breaks on the side of the road as you pass by.
- Do not weave around on perfectly straight roads – Be Predictable
- Do not change lines suddenly
- Do not change lines going through a corner
- Do not pass on the right of someone going slower
- Do not throw trash on the side of the road
- Do not “Drop In” on a pace line with out asking to
- Do not “Sit On” a wheel with out asking first
- Do not participate in a Pace Line unless you are going to work in it
- Do not wear headphones on a group ride with 1200+ cyclists
- Do not blast music on a wireless portable speaker for others to “enjoy”
- Do not be mad that you can’t ride faster than others. We were all slow early on in our cycling.
- Do not just stop in the middle of the road. Someone will hit you!
- Do not ride in the left lane especially going up a hill. You will become a hood ornament.
- Do not pass wobbly riders to closely on climbs they will hook your handlebars if you get too close.
- Do not make fun of overweight cyclists. They are trying to get leaner and you may have been their inspiration.
- If you ask if its OK that another cyclist “pulls you” to the finish and they say no, don’t sit on their wheel anyway and not expect a foul reaction.
- Please let others know when you are passing on the left
- If you behave like an ass towards other riders I promise you the cycling gods and Karma will pay you back twice.
- Be nice to and thank all volunteers. They would rather be on their bikes.
- Be nice to the residents and wave back.
- Be especially nice to small children who wave or tell you that you have a cool bike. Your wave back and conversation may have just inspired the next kid to become a world champion. Not waving or ignoring said child might inspire them to door a cyclist in the future. More karma folks…
- Be helpful to other cyclists in need.
- Be prepared to change your own flat tire(s)
- There is no shame in walking hills, just make sure to make the decision early.
- There is no shame in asking others for help
- Eat before your hungry and drink before you are thirsty. Saw lots of Bonk!
- Don’t ride around aimlessly if you get lost. You brought a cell phone, right?
- Have fun, ride smart, and ride safely.
- Enjoy the ride
- Recruit others for the next ride 😉
Well there you have it, the 100th show. Makes me feel like I just crossed the finish line of a half marathon but as always when we cross a finish line we look forward to the next one. So what is in store for the Endurance QuickCast? More shows, more guests, more topics, more deals…
We aren’t stopping at 100 shows that’s for sure. If you would like us to answer your questions on upcoming shows let us know!
As a matter of fact…
I have a great question that came to me from Stuart of Melbourne Australia on HIIT Training. Stuart ‘s question is so good I am going to do an entire show on HIIT training. Look for this show soon!
Thanks again but don’t forget its one thing to listen its to put this in action. Let me know how it goes and have fun while trying.
Music for show intro, outro, and mid-play break: “Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC BY-SA”
Intro and Outro music: Battle from the Crime Scene Album from Jahzzar
Mid-play break music: Please Listen Carefully from the Tumbling Dishes Like Old-Man’s Wishes Album
Other show resources