- Fitness advice please – TransWales content
I’m planning on doing the TransWales next year and would like to know others views on what the best prepartion for such an event.
I’m pretty fit, more than fit enough for all the exercise I currently do, but the TW is a bit of step out of my comfort zone…
So, how do I best prepare for day after day in the saddle?
Thanks.Posted 7 years agomonkeypSubscriber
I managed with a few seasons of 1 day marathons and doing the 40 mile round trip commute 2 to 3 times a week (sometimes upping it to 50 miles) with the occasional MTB weekend ride or night ride.
In my opinion, if you are fit then you’ll be OK if your bike is reliable and comfortable.
I managed OK on the 2007 one where it rained solidly for 5 of the 7 days.
My only problem was the special stages as my sprint speed was (and still is) poor but my ability to go at a constant pace was good.Posted 7 years ago
When I started doing regular long rides I found I had to change quite a few things. Swapped my Camelbak for a Wingnut…massive improvement to arm, shoulder & back ache. Bought some expensive shorts…worth their weight in gold. I’m still looking for the ideal saddle, and have sadly ploughed a LOT of money into experimenting, so far without total success, so I’m battling with saddle sores all the time. I’d recommend trying to get all this stuff sorted out before spending a week of long days on the bike!Posted 7 years agocycles2goMember
Take a few days out (3-4) if possible in the winter and ride 50-60 miles a day. You’ll soon see what niggles you get and have a chance to put them right before the event.
You may benefit from changing your riding position to something abit more comfortable, just do it in plenty of time, not halfway through TW.
If you’re fairly fit you should be OK but its all in the preparation.Posted 7 years ago
oh yes, and as idave suggests, nutrition suddenly becomes a major issue! Make sure you’re eating enough (ballpark 1g of carbohydrate for 1kg of body weight per hour I think it is), and drinking something like 600 ml of water per hour. All rough figures of course, YMMV.Posted 7 years agoPeterPoddyMember
Ride your bike a lot, then ride it a lot more, then finish off with some more riding, then repeat. Then do it again the next day! 🙂
It’s not about fitness as such, but endurace. I had a HRM and worked out what 75-80% effort was for me, then tried to stick to that. I’m not what you’d call that fit, but I finished when fitter riders were failing, becasue I put a lot of planning and preparation into myself, my bike, and my kit.
There’s more to it than riding: Your bike need to FIT PERFECTLY. I played around with stem lenghts (10mm shorter than I was used to for a bit more comfort) saddles, grips, seatposts etc until I felt totally at ease. I played around with shock pressures a lot too.
Comfort is everything. Mose people were on FS bikes. I rode a Yeti 575 which was generally a burly set-up, but I borrowed some lighter wheels and tyres from Mrs PPs bike and it was just over 27lb all up. For me it was perfect. Very supple and comfy, but could take any hits that course could dish out.
There were plenty on HTs, but I wouldn’t personally.
I serviced the bike front to back: Full NEW drivetrain & BB. Hubs serviced, shock and fork serviced. There was nothing to go wrong, and nothing did. During the week I checked the tyres once, fitted one new pair of pads and lubed the cables (2008 was also silly wet!)
Take as many spares and toold as you can in your kit bag, the on site service is expensive. I could have stripped my entire bike and replaced just about anything with what I fitted into a shoe box!
And, vitally important, learn what your body needs as fuel. I discoved I don’t like too many chemicals (Gives me a bad stomach) and stuck to High 5 drink, Mule bars (natural energy bars) and a huge amount normal food. It worked for me.
DO NOT FORGET CHAMOIS CREAM! I used Udderly Smooth and it works, no doubt about it.
After that it’s ALL IN YOR HEAD. Ever minute of every day for 6 days I was convinced I would fail. But I takled myself out of it and just kept turning the pedals and setting target after target (“Just get to the next tree/bend/feeding station”) I thought that once I’d done 4 days I would feel better as I was over half way. And I did. Until the 5th day which was the biggest bitch I could imagine. It hurt like never before. Only on the last day did I let loose and up my pace. I blew myself apart that day, basically.
Was it good? Yeah. I reckon it was. An amazing experience and some super riding.
Would I do it again? Probably not. The investment in time and money make it a once-only thing for me I think.
Just DO IT!!
Enjoy!Posted 7 years ago
I would suggest lots of long slow(er) rides at steady pace, flat road is best for this. However I maybe shot down in flames for this 🙂
Oh yeah and as PP says make sure you have nutrition on the bike sorted. Experiment with carb drinks/gels/bars whatever. They are easier to digest and more effective than spam fritters or whatever people will swear by on here, but YMMV.Posted 7 years agothomthumbMember
My lowerback sometimes suffers on long days.
that *could* be an indicator of poor core strength or tight hamstrings.
I struggle with flexibility (your mileage may vary) – if i was doing the TW i would need to find a stretching routine that i could do in a field each night to allow me to be comfortable the next day.
as said above. get the bike comfortable, get your fuelling right, get some miles in.Posted 7 years agoChewMember
Probably depends on what you want to achieve. Win or Finish?
I just wanted to finish so this year i just slowly built things up and just rode as much as i could, with no specific training plan.
The hardest thing is the phycological and fitness issues of riding 6-8 hours a day back to back, sleeping in a tent.
The best training i did all year was doing the Coast to Coast a few months before. Similar daily mileage and terrain, and sleeping in strange place every night, but 4-5 days rather than 7.
Also get yourself a BIG tent. If it rains (and it will) you’ll be glad of the extra space to move around and get changed, and having plaenty of room to keep all of your stuff dry. Saw people with one man tents struggle.Posted 7 years ago
I would suggest lots of long slow(er) rides at steady pace, flat road is best for this. However I maybe shot down in flames for this
This is exactly the advice I got from a rather well-known & successful endurance racer when I was building my training plan. Build up a really good base over the winter via lots of long, low HR riding (we’re talking 120bpm territory in my case..39 yrs old). Unfortunately, that’s pretty much impossible to maintain off-road in my experience.Posted 7 years agoPunk_DrummerMember
Pretty Much if your not after a win and just to finish respectfully then Long back to back days in the Saddle. I did the TW this year had a fitness plan all worked out then was injured so could do much riding untill a month before the event, but during the winter I had put in a lot of miles and back to back days.
As for specific training go out and do lots of LOOOOONG boring fire road climbs as there are loads, these are what I found the hardest.
Bike and kit prep if you have more than one bike select the one your going to ride and pretty much only ride that and get your set up right now. About 3-2 months before get it serviced and take it compleatly apart all nuts etc bearings replace anything that maybe worn. and renew your drive train chain Casstte chainrings. once serviced keep riding it so that its all bedded in nicley.
PDPosted 7 years agonickcSubscriber
I found it really hard to do long steady rides on a mountain bike. but you can get the miles and hours in on a road bike pretty easily. Plus “not stopping” just get into a rhythm, and try to keep it going rather than stop-start, which again, I found is easier on a road bike than a MTBPosted 7 years agoPeterPoddyMember
About 3-2 months before get it serviced and take it compleatly apart all nuts etc bearings replace anything that maybe worn
I’d say do that the week before and then go for one shake down ride to make sure you’ve done it right.
Best thing is a bike you know well, have set up well, but is in virtually new condition. There were lots of people stuggling trying to replace parts during the wwek that had simply worn out. I started with a brand new drivetrain and brought it back looking like this –
That’s a 350 mile old Deore steel middle ring there…
You really, really don’t want a partially worn ANYTHING on your bike! 🙂
One of the drier trails on the first day.Posted 7 years ago
If you were handing out information for free, I’d be interested. If you aren’t, then I wouldn’t presume to ask.
I pay Torq for ongoing personalised coaching consultancy and training plans.
I am extremely interested by the ideas you hint at, but it seems as though you are not on the coaching market.Posted 7 years ago
It does have value!
Still a lot gets discussed here. I agree though that you may perfectly justifiably draw the line where ever you see fit.
If someone wants advice on say, their website say I’ll happily spend a certain amount of time dishing it out. If they want the whole thing written that’s different.Posted 7 years ago
Hmm, Googling ‘intervals for endurance’ produces some interesting results.
Seems to imply that if you are not very fit, then base training is important for endurance; but if you are already well trained then HIIT produces more improvement in endurance than more base.Posted 7 years agolazlo53Member
I did it this year on a hardtail TSW and the only time I saw the leaders was at the presentation each night, but that’s what I expected anyway. As with all events you’re often amongst your own peer group and you get support and encouragement along the way. You do need fitness, and my training was a daily 15mile round trip to work and regular fell runs up to 10-12 miles but with more of an emphasis on two or three hour bike rides as the TW got closer. The most important thing in the actual event was the willingness to accept that much of every day would be hard, uncomfortable and sometimes just bloody painful. There’s a steady weariness that creeps in over the first four days as your body learns to cope with the demands being made of it, and that requires a certain level of determination to overcome. The days consist of pretty much the same routine, up early, fill yourself full of stodge, pack your tent, get on your bloody bike and ride. Then, hours later, wash your bike down, clean yourself, stuff yourself with more stodge, get to bed about 9 o-clockish and try to sleep and do it all again the next day, for ever and ever. What’s it like? effing brilliant. the sense of achievement is still there. And you get a pretty good finishers jersey and a very limited edition buff (I wore mine at the OMM two weeks ago although nobody recognised it!….b***ards)Posted 7 years ago
The TW is the hardest, and best, event I’ve ever done. I couldn’t recommend it more highly. Do it.
The topic ‘Fitness advice please – TransWales content’ is closed to new replies.