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  1. #1
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    How to train for 8 hour solo race?

    I usually do this 8 hour relay race on a team, so you get a good break between laps. This year I want to enter solo. So, do the most laps you can in the 8 hour race. Laps are 10km which takes me 43min on average. How could I specifically train for this?

    http://www.pulseracing.ca/events/summer-epic8-hour/

  2. #2
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    I haven't raced that far yet, but I have done several rides around that length.

    Fitness and training are important, but I think taking the time to figure out your pace, nutrition, and hydration are just as important for rides that long. You'll have to make a conscious effort to hold yourself back and stay at a pace you can maintain. Riding as smooth and efficient as possible will also make a big difference. On my longer rides and races, I generally try to minimize braking and hard accelerations.

  3. #3
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    Figure out pace and nutrition. For me something around 70% of XC pace works for that length, and ~200-250cals an hour with something besides just sugar/carbs.
    -DC, just some XC Bum in Sfla...

  4. #4
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    That race is less than a month away. There's not much you're going to do training-wise to improve your fitness; but a couple of long 4-6 hour rides might tell you where you stand, and how you're going to be feeling for the 2nd half of the race. I would focus on getting your nutrition and hydration squared away.

  5. #5
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    Yep, less than a month out doesn't give enough time to do much of anything but dig a hole. What has your training program looked like in the last 2 months? Any long rides over 3hrs?

  6. #6
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    In addition to getting in some lengthier rides, make sure you taper down heading into race day. Be well-rested and hydrated.

    Like Solo-X inquired, what has your riding been up to this point? If you're currently in good form, then I'd imagine you'll be fine.

    To reiterate, keep a close eye on pacing and nutrition. Stock up your solo pit with the necessities to keep you energized for the duration.
    Stick around if you're housebroken...

  7. #7
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    Currently in good form. Riding 100miles a week +/- combining road and MTB. Had a couple of races this season with 3h rides thrown in. I'd imagine I'm already prepared... not to be in the running, just to have fun and finish without completely stopping. It IS a relay race, so you can take breaks in between laps if needed.
    Great advice on the pacing and nutrition.

  8. #8
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    I agree with Crankout: "In addition to getting in some lengthier rides, make sure you taper down heading into race day. Be well-rested and hydrated."

    With a good base and a month to go (and a flexible schedule) you've got plenty of time to get in three 6 hour training rides -- preferably on similar terrain to the actual race course -- and a good taper week.

    Good racing!
    Whining is not a strategy.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thatshowiroll View Post
    Currently in good form. Riding 100miles a week +/- combining road and MTB. Had a couple of races this season with 3h rides thrown in. I'd imagine I'm already prepared... not to be in the running, just to have fun and finish without completely stopping. It IS a relay race, so you can take breaks in between laps if needed.
    Great advice on the pacing and nutrition.
    Agreed with others about it being a little late to add much fitness.

    I'd do a hard 5hr ish ride this weekend or next and try to make it as continuous as possible. Only a few stops, and no stops longer than 3-5min (don't stop at every intersection to look at a map or take a long lunch break at the top of the climb). Focus on that, and eat what you'd plan to eat while racing and make sure it'll work with your stomach.

    I think it's really key to keep moving in these races. Short as possible on breaks, only to grab another bottle or peel open a banana and get back on the bike.

    Then need to ride your own race. Everyone goes fast out of the blocks...for good reason...dont want to end up at the end of the conga line of slow people on singletrack. Can't get too caught up measuring yourself against guys who may or may not be in teams of 4 who are sprinting every lap though. Gotta stay humble and ride a pace you think you can sustain for 6hrs....then try to hang on for the last 2.

  10. #10
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    Wanted to give an update.
    I accomplished my goal of 10 laps for a total of 100KM. First 5 laps were pretty strong, but I felt myself fading near the end. Ex: Lap1=37min, Lap10=53min.
    I used a lot of advice from this thread like, get a few super-long rides in before the race, minimize braking and use berms, go at about 70% of usual pace.
    Thanks for your help.

  11. #11
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    ^^^ Nice job!

    Enjoyable experience?
    Whining is not a strategy.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by kosmo View Post
    ^^^ Nice job!

    Enjoyable experience?
    Very rewarding, and very difficult. I couldn't believe how the top guys looked so fresh at the end of the race. Like they could do it all over again.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thatshowiroll View Post
    Very rewarding, and very difficult. I couldn't believe how the top guys looked so fresh at the end of the race. Like they could do it all over again.
    it still hurts the same during the race. just gets easier the hours/days after and you don't feel quite as crushed.

    try to be more consistent in the lap times next time, even if it means going slower initially. 16min is a huge difference and means you went out too hard, imho. if you look at the top guys, the lap times (especially laps 3 and beyond) will all be very similar +/- a few minutes.

  14. #14
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    I just did a 100+ miler last weekend. I had a great time and did much better than last year on the same race.

    You feel the same at hour 10 as you do at hour 3. Your body hurts and some muscle groups are numb. Between hour 0 and 3, stuff starts to hurt, but it never really gets worse after about hour 3 IME, you just keep pedaling.

    The exception is if you cramp. Then it feels worse.

    If you can break through the wall of cramps, you'll recover and feel better and be able to continue without cramps, your body "resets".

    Nutrition is very important. The less elite you are (not so much your speed or place in local XC races), the more you have to rely on nutrition and proper hydration. This means electrolyte mixes, base-energy food, quick-energy food, knowing when to use each, etc. A bunch of cliff bars isn't going to do it here for most people. The more elite you are, the more efficient your body is and more able to keep up a fast pace for an extended period of time. It's not that these things become unimportant, but you generally don't have to go to such extremes to stave off cramps, etc.

    Pace. Don't try to go fast at first, realize how far you are going to go and that just barely moving along is infinitely faster than someone doubled over with cramps. I made up an hour due to not cramping. IMO last year it was 30 minutes not being able to walk or pedal, being doubled over in agony, and another 30 minutes while my pace was ultra-slow before and after. Once I broke through that wall, I was "back to normal", but not hitting that wall means a much faster time.

    I had a ton of fun this time, had a riding partner for nearly the whole 100 miles, lots of great trail, lots and lots of mud and puddles. There's a lot of factors that go into this kind of riding, not just being able to do long rides, but keeping yourself fueled, avoiding cramps, understanding what your body is doing, setting your pace, etc.

    How to train for 8 hour solo race?-38474945_2126525864089367_961399966461329408_n.jpg
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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