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Lizzie will ride free
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Another question about training for RAMROD (Ride Around Mount Rainier One Day. 155 miles with 10000 feet of climing.)

My goal for this ride is just to finish and enjoy it. I know I won't have a bunch of extra energy to ride silly, so I'm wondering how to spend the strength I have. At this point in the season, I'm feeling like it's a reasonable goal, and I'm on track.

My question is this: If my LT is around 180, and the hills are long, but not crazy steep, what sort of limit should I put on my heart rate so I don't burn up all my energy on the climbs? In other words, is lower always better, or should I try to stay below, say 165?

Is there a rule of thumb like "don't go out of zone 3 if you can help it."

Is the deal that whenever I go very high there is a big price to pay in total energy spent?

I'm assuming that I won't need to go over my LT at any point.

Thanks for the advice.
 

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Misfit Toy
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I have no idea, but I can tell you a friend of mine keeps her HR at about 80% when she's doing long climbs. Don't know if that helps you......
 

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For long rides with lots of climbing, I have to stay conservative. My max is 192. I know I can ride at 145 for a very long time. I can ride multiple long climbs at 160-165, but maybe not all day. So for a ride like the Death Ride, I'll set mental HR limits for each major climb.. something like 150, 155, 160, 165, as fast as I like, for the five climbs. Starting conservative helps to ensure that I make it to the end still feeling strong. If I don't set some limits I'll wind up going too hard on the early climbs.
 

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For president!
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jplatzner said:
Another question about training for RAMROD (Ride Around Mount Rainier One Day. 155 miles with 10000 feet of climing.)

My goal for this ride is just to finish and enjoy it. I know I won't have a bunch of extra energy to ride silly, so I'm wondering how to spend the strength I have. At this point in the season, I'm feeling like it's a reasonable goal, and I'm on track.

My question is this: If my LT is around 180, and the hills are long, but not crazy steep, what sort of limit should I put on my heart rate so I don't burn up all my energy on the climbs? In other words, is lower always better, or should I try to stay below, say 165?

Is there a rule of thumb like "don't go out of zone 3 if you can help it."

Is the deal that whenever I go very high there is a big price to pay in total energy spent?

I'm assuming that I won't need to go over my LT at any point.

Thanks for the advice.
Your goal for the ride is just to finish, so unless there is a time limit you are going to be near, I would keep the HR low. Something around 160-165. Tempo riding should be the order of the day. If at 130 miles in you feel fresh (unlikely) then hammer the final 25 miles home and push up the average speed a bit. I would much rather have a dissappointing finishing time then not enjoy the ride because I was completely cracked for the last 50 miles.

Lastly, see what works for you in training. I'm assuming you'll be doing some 75-100 mile rides to get ready for this. See what kind of effort is both enjoyable and sustainable for that time period. 100 miles isn't a very different effort from 150, you just have to eat more.

Silas
 

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It's all ball bearings
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I was hoping to do RAMROD this year but I didn't get my registration in on time (if you know of anyone with a ticket who wants to bail out and transfer their spot, pm me!).

I have ridden *most* of the course on my own (not all in one ride) and most of the climbs are fairly mellow, except I've heard the Cayuse (sp?) Pass climb is a bit of a bear (3000' in 8 miles or something?) and of course Paradise. I've never even driven that far out beyond Crystal, so I haven't even seen the climb at all.

Tacoma to Enumclaw via Orting/S. Prarie is a fairly staple ride of mine, as is down south of Rainier. I've gone as far up 410 as Greenwater on the bike and turned around. I've just never gotten all the way around the east side. Most of that is flat, with a few gently rolling climbs. I think it's mainly up to Paradise and that Cayuse Pass climb that you really need to save your gas for and take your time on.
 

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It's all ball bearings
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R.Rice said:
Am I looking at this wrong or are you going up that first Paradise climb for about 40 miles?:eek:
No, you're looking at it right. Paradise is about 4370' in 37 miles (works out to 2.2%, but it gets REALLY steep towards the end!) and Cayuse is 2494' in about 10 miles, which is 4.7%. Some good climbing there!
 

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BenWA said:
No, you're looking at it right. Paradise is about 4370' in 37 miles (works out to 2.2%, but it gets REALLY steep towards the end!) and Cayuse is 2494' in about 10 miles, which is 4.7%. Some good climbing there!
Wow,I live in Florida.I can't imagine going uphill for 40 miles.This place sucks.I need to move.:D
 

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Enticing ride...

RAMROD sounds like a worthy challenge.

I have driven up to Paradise in April and it is beautiful all the way there as well as in the surrounding region. At the time the road was closed beyond there due to snow, so I didn't get beyond there. But the taste of the place I got made me want to come back...

There is some serious mountain there though!

I'd like to ask you folks for some advice...

I live near Chicago and around here it's rather flat. What sort of preparation would be appropriate if I wanted to ride RAMROD next year? I did my first centuries last year (both fairly flat, one with a serious headwind on the return) in under seven hours. I hope to improve on that this year through more and better riding and training - but my training is still evolving.

Also what sort of benchmarks should I shoot for to know if I'm ready for RAMROD?

I know that the best way to prepare for exercise at altitude and for climbing is to be exposed to it directly but that is not really an option around here. However, I can simulate the sustained effort of a climb by increasing my effort on the bike, if only over flat terrain.

Any help/suggestions are appreciated.
 

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RoughRider - check out the ACE Training for Cyclists at arniebakercycling.com if you want in-depth stuff. Generally, for the 8 or so weeks prior to the Death Ride (130 miles w/ 16k feet of climbing) he advocates at least 210 miles per week with 15-25k feet of climbing. He also heavily advocates at least three training days with at least 70% of the total elevation gain for the event you plan on doing.

As far as heart rate I think ericm is right on. His HR profile is very close to mine and I find that if I focus on keeping my HR between 155-165 I am in good shape but if I wander into 170-175 it leads to a painful experience over the last 25% of the training ride. I also focus on keeping my cadence above 70 on sustained climbs, even on Mt.Diablo which gains about 3,300 feet in 9 or 10 miles.

I'd also check out Hammer Perpeteum for fuel on long training rides, especially if you train in remote areas.
 

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It's all ball bearings
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others will probably give better advice, but my 2 pence:

RoughRider said:
I live near Chicago and around here it's rather flat. What sort of preparation would be appropriate if I wanted to ride RAMROD next year? I did my first centuries last year (both fairly flat, one with a serious headwind on the return) in under seven hours. I hope to improve on that this year through more and better riding and training - but my training is still evolving.
Were these centuries solo or with partners? If solo, then you are probably off to a pretty good start, even if they were flat. Keep it up and gradually try to incorporate some more hills into your routes, and try to add 15-20 minutes to each successive ride.

I know that the best way to prepare for exercise at altitude and for climbing is to be exposed to it directly but that is not really an option around here. However, I can simulate the sustained effort of a climb by increasing my effort on the bike, if only over flat terrain.
Regarding altitude, Paradise isn't THAT high (less than 6000') . Of course, different people cope with altitude differently (due to both genetics and aclimitization), so what might be a piece of cake for one guy at 6000' may be a challenge for another guy. But in general, I would doubt if 5400' or whatever Paradise is would be much to worry about. Compared to other folks riding the course (most of whom ostensibly live in Washington and Oregon), you wont be at much of a disadvantage, as 95% of people in Washington and Oregon live at 1000' asl or lower. Even though we have some nice mountains, Washington isn't a very high place (compared to, say, the Cordilleran states like Colorado or Wyoming).

Regarding simulating a sustained effort in your relatively flat area, I would say find the biggest hill you can to train on, even if only a couple hundred feet high (there are plenty of glacial moraine hills around there that should be high enough) and do as many repeats as you can stand...?
 

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Make sure you are comfortable spending that much time on the bike. I figure that I need 4 or 5 rides that take about 75% of the time my big event ride is going to take. More or longer if I can get them in. So if you can do a flattish century in say 6 hours but expect your RAMDOD to be 12 hours, you need to do some 150 mile rides to get used to the time in the saddle.

You may discover things on those longer rides, such as needing to supplement with electrolytes, or that after 7 hours the chamois in your favorite shorts feels like sandpaper.

There's been a lot of dutch pro racers who were excellent climbers but came from an area with no big climbs. So it is possible to get good at climbing even with no big mountains to ride. Although living in the bay area where there's a bunch of cllmbs, I have no idea how they trained without them.
 
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