_My_ first century challenge

fishyweb Posts: 173
edited June 2013 in Road beginners
I've been riding for about 5 years, as a way of increasing fitness for running which is my main sport, which has been especially useful during periods of running-related injury. I only get out for a ride 1-2 times per week. However, I found I really enjoyed cycling and, a few months ago, set myself a challenge of doing a 100 mile ride before I reach age 50, and booked myself onto the Chiltern Challenge 100 sportive (http://www.action.org.uk/chiltern_challenge_100) which happens to start very locally to me. It is actually a 104 mile route, with about 4700 feet of climbing. I sketched myself out a training plan consisting of 2 rides per weekend, maxing out at 75 miles, and 1 mid-week ride approximately every other week. Most of the training plans I found on the net consisted of 5-6 rides per week, so I was concerned that my plan might prove inadequate. Running was relegated to 3 short mid-week outings, to keep things ticking over.

The training went well, apart from spraining a wrist in May as a result of a stupid accident. :roll: I tried to balance between routes with plenty of climbing, and flatter routes for improving CV fitness, and started getting frequent PRs on some of my regular Strava segments, so that was a good sign.

The sportive itself was last Sunday and, suffice to say, it went better than I could have dared hope. :) I felt pretty strong throughout the ride. The quality of the feed stops and organisation probably helped, but I'd imagined that I would feel wasted at the end. Instead, I felt as if I could have gone on for a good while longer. The weather was overcast and pretty windy, but even the wind didn't cause as great a problem as I'd expected. I finished in 6:55 moving time, or 7:53 including food stops (of which I took full advantage :wink: ), giving 15.1 mph average. My Strava track is at http://app.strava.com/activities/62385479 for anyone interested.

Problem is, I feel quite hooked to this cycling lark now, but also don't want to continue to neglect running. I guess I'm in the very happy situation of trying to find a balance between the 2 which allows me to (a) maintain sport-specific fitness for both, and (b) doesn't end in divorce! For now, though, I'm happy that I was able to fulfill my pre-50 100 mile challenge :P
Member of http://www.UKnetrunner.co.UK - the greatest online affiliated running club


  • IanREmery
    IanREmery Posts: 148
    Bravo sir! Great achievement and a good average speed too.

    I shall be tackling my own 1st century challenge at the London 100 in four weeks or so. Only been on the roadbike since end of March after pootling around on a hybrid for two years, but have clocked over 900 miles on it so feeling fairly confident.
  • djm501
    djm501 Posts: 378
    Well done mate and good time. 8)

    Want to keep on the road and on the run huh? Hmmm, if you take up swimming too then you know what to do.... ;)