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captain-ahab said:
I've been hitting this Monday night group ride for the past month or so and on average we do about 22 to 25 miles at a 17 to 18 mph pace.

tonight's ride is 33 miles and I'm a little worried. That's it, just expressing my fears, hopefully I'll be alive tomorrow. :)
You've been doing this ride for a month, and you're afraid that that a ride a half-hour longer will kill you? The worst that happens is you get dropped and have to find your own way home.

You must have something real to be afraid of ;-)
 

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captain-ahab said:
Problem is, I think I've gotten good at riding that distance but I've never ridden much more. I usually start semi-bonking around the 25 mile mark so we'll see...maybe this is what i need to get over that plateau
Eat! Drink! Before the ride, and during if necessary.
 

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Hopefully you are enjoying your group ride right now! Looking forward to the ride report...

You can still improve incrementally without killing yourself. Just riding a little more this month than last month kinda thing. Also, if you are pooping out, don't be afraid to take shorter pulls on the front or hide out in the back of the group. Enjoy it!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
ok, ride report, I GOT MY ASS WHOOPED!!

I was feelin kinda crappy but when I got there I thought I overheard someone say the route was kinda flat...first hill we came to I asked the girl near me about it being flat...she laughed and said he was joking, it's the hilliest ride ever. By the time I got to the end every part of my body was achin (now not somuch) but hey, next time it will be that much easier right...right?
 

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Heres a few tips:

1) if your leg muscles are starting to hurt, go down a few gears and increase your cadence.

2) If you are worried about the distance, just sit in. Don't make any pulls, just let the others do the majority of the work. As you become accustomed to the longer distances and more strenuous efforts you will be able to pull on the rides.

3) Although your hurting now, stretch your quads, calves, and hamstrings like no tomorrow. This will prevent massive cramps and help you recover faster.

4) Go out and repeat said ride over and over again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Ghost234 said:
Heres a few tips:
2) If you are worried about the distance, just sit in. Don't make any pulls, just let the others do the majority of the work. As you become accustomed to the longer distances and more strenuous efforts you will be able to pull on the rides.
I think the issue is the group splits up and becomes a string of small groups, those then pull apart on the hills and it's then becomes a very long string of riders all working on their own. Maybe we're all just inexperienced?
 

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captain-ahab said:
I think the issue is the group splits up and becomes a string of small groups, those then pull apart on the hills and it's then becomes a very long string of riders all working on their own. Maybe we're all just inexperienced?
It's tough to find groups that are all the same ability. And hills will stretch out groups that are evenly matched.

As you get to know your group, figure out who is close to your ability on the rides. Whether they are slighly faster or slower, try to stay with them and organize them if you can. Work together, pull/draft each other especially when it's windy, encourage them, challenge them.

Group rides work best when there is a balance of fellowship and competition. And even at the entry levels you can find your place in that balance.

My group leader is a retired pro, now a trainer and coach. He runs a group that has everything from recreational riders to pretty fast vets. He keeps track of ability levels and will issue challenges before and during the ride, "keep on so and so wheel tonight", "go after the second hill and see how long you can stay away". He rides at the back for the first 10-12 miles working with the slower riders, then he takes off and tries to ride down leaders before they get back home.
 

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Congrats Morris! Keep on trucking and you'll see improvement...

If the group isn't advertised as no-drop, then the smaller groups that form would seem to be riders of similar ability that could work together. Not sure I would turn up for a "group ride" that always turned into a bunch of solo riders totally strung out though...
 
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