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alp climbing expectations and experiences

in may this year i am 40 (mid life crisis)and will travel to alp D'Huez with cycle what sort of time could i expect to complete a straight forward bottom to top of said peak? i am a recreational cum keep fit type of cyclist with no experience of this magnitude before.am currently jogging 7.30 per mile easy plenty of time on a cross trainer to supplement cycling in a very flat area your thoughts and experiences would be most welcome!

Posts

  • depends on how much you're gunning for it! i think a sub-hour is usually seen as a respectable time for a good club cyclist - allow anything up to 1hr 20mn i reckon, based on what you've said.
    We are all full of weakness and errors; let us mutually pardon each other our follies - it is the first law of nature.
    Voltaire
  • What he said... Just remember, the first 2km are by far the steepest. You'll have plenty of other cyclists to pace yourself with and the motivation/torture of knowing exactly how many hairpins are left. You will, at some point, start cursing the next b'stard hairpin and wondering where it is, however.

    As for time, If you are reasonably fit allow 1hr to 1-hr 20 minutes, if not, anything upto 2 hours. The climb is 13km long if that helps your pacing at all.
    "In many ways, my story was that of a raging, Christ-like figure who hauled himself off the cross, looked up at the Romans with blood in his eyes and said 'My turn, sock cookers'"

    @gietvangent
  • Yep that's pretty much about it. I did it twice in 2003 in 63 and 69 minutes. My training was all based on commuting to work (30 mile round trip) everyday for 6 months with a few longer rides at weekends and some intervals on the turbo (but not stacks and no 2x20's). So I'd say if you are moderately active and concentrate on the bike for as long as you can before going you should be okay and as the others have said 1hr - 1hr 20 should be do-able. Under the hour as already pointed out is considered good.

    There is the issue of which finish line you use of course - the Tour finish, the Marmotte finish and the Tourist finish are all in different places and are different distances!

    As disgruntledgoat says the hairpins aren't evenly spaced and sometimes you do find yourself cursing the unfairness of it - where is the next hairpin, why is it so far, who built this flippin' road, grrrrr!.

    This forum will have a wealth of training advice if you search and people are usually happy to help provided you give enough background/specific enough question. Good luck and enjoy the training and climbing the Alpe.
  • depends on how much you're gunning for it! i think a sub-hour is usually seen as a respectable time for a good club cyclist - allow anything up to 1hr 20mn i reckon, based on what you've said.

    In the Gimp d'Alpe last year (race up Alpe d'huez was won in 45 mins something as I was on the last corner the 1st guy went round in 43. I'd say 1hr 30.

    This was the Marmotte finish.
    http://twitter.com/mgalex
    www.ogmorevalleywheelers.co.uk

    10TT 24:36 25TT: 57:59 50TT: 2:08:11, 100TT: 4:30:05 12hr 204.... unfinished business
  • richaricha Posts: 1,634
    Robert,

    You'll find loads of great info here:
    http://markliversedge.blogspot.com/

    Mark completed the climb on his 40th birthday in 62 mins.
    Rich
  • sampras38sampras38 Posts: 1,917
    I'm in the same boat as you, although I'm only 38. I've entered the Welsh dragon ride in June 185km, and I'm also going to have a go at the Cole Du Columbiere alps climb in July. My training seems pretty similar to yours, with turbo work in the week and long rides at the weekend. At least while the weather is so bad and the nights so dark. I'm not a member of a club and tend to ride alone atm, or with maybe 1 or 2 club riders. I'm trying to up the miles at the weekend with climbs included. At the moment my weekend rides are in the 40-50 mile range and I'm going to try the 50 mile Surrey Hills ride this weekend.
  • Obviously it depends on factors mentioned above.

    Also the heat. I did it in mid June on a day when the temperature was over 30 degrees with absolutely no breeze nor shelter. I stopped 3 times on the way up to cool off in roadside fountains!

    I'd only just got back into cycling at the time so hadn't done much riding or training. Although, I wasn't unfit generally. Took me about an hour and a half.

    Fantastic experience, the numbered corners with pictures of legendary cyclists are great though somewhat demoralising as they count down from 21!
  • sampras38 wrote:
    I'm in the same boat as you, although I'm only 38. I've entered the Welsh dragon ride in June 185km, and I'm also going to have a go at the Cole Du Columbiere alps climb in July. My training seems pretty similar to yours, with turbo work in the week and long rides at the weekend. At least while the weather is so bad and the nights so dark. I'm not a member of a club and tend to ride alone atm, or with maybe 1 or 2 club riders. I'm trying to up the miles at the weekend with climbs included. At the moment my weekend rides are in the 40-50 mile range and I'm going to try the 50 mile Surrey Hills ride this weekend.

    I used the Dragon ride for my warm up to Marmotte. It was nothing in comparison but I didn't know that at the time. :D
    http://twitter.com/mgalex
    www.ogmorevalleywheelers.co.uk

    10TT 24:36 25TT: 57:59 50TT: 2:08:11, 100TT: 4:30:05 12hr 204.... unfinished business
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    depends on how much you're gunning for it! i think a sub-hour is usually seen as a respectable time for a good club cyclist - allow anything up to 1hr 20mn i reckon, based on what you've said.

    In the Gimp d'Alpe last year (race up Alpe d'huez was won in 45 mins something as I was on the last corner the 1st guy went round in 43. I'd say 1hr 30.

    This was the Marmotte finish.

    Take it this fella was a pro?....45mins....only 8 mins behind Pantani and on par with tye majority who raced up it in the 2004 TDF TT....

    Do a UK sportive as prep....as this is much harder than climbing a big climb abroad....and will build endurance...and then just stick the bike in a suitable gear you can keep spinning for a long time and just have a nice time sauntering up a legend...hope you have a Compact or a triple.....have a good look around and really enjoy the unfolding scenery and the landmarks...make it a good experience rather than pushing yourself until you near vomit and cant remember much of the experience at all....as I did this 'Time bollocks' lately with the Stelvio and I truly reget it as I cannot remember much at all apart from suffering....Its the first time Ive pushed as hard as I can go and it will be the last....what a wasted memory.
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