Training for my first 100 miles

ThisGirlCant
ThisGirlCant Posts: 48
edited July 2018 in Road beginners
Hi All,

I've had loads of good advice here over the last 9 months or so, so wondering if you can help me again.

I've been talked into doing a 100 mile bike ride in september - the Manchester 100. I'm led to believe it's completely flat, however it will be the furthest I've ever ridden, by over 50 miles! I'm used to riding in Sheffield (very hilly but not many hours in the saddle)

Can anyone link me to a 12 week training plan for a 100 miler beginner? I found one on mapmyride but it wanted me to pay for it.

I'm not looking to break any records, I'd just like to be able to complete it. My biggest concern is my mental state, but I'm hoping if I feel physically prepared then I might be able to stay more positive about it...


Thanks in advance!
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Comments

  • imposter2.0
    imposter2.0 Posts: 12,028
    No '12 week plan' needed. Just start getting some longer rides in. Start with a few 50s and build from there.
  • I was hoping for something structured but thanks for your reply.
  • bendertherobot
    bendertherobot Posts: 11,684
    There was something on twitter earlier about running, it''s probably equally true for cycling.

    Essentially, if you want to do more hills, do more hills. If you want to get faster, go faster. If you want to go further, go further.

    Now, plans are important, if only to keep to them.

    Generally, if you've done a 50 you can already do a 100. But it might hurt. Invest some time over the summer in getting some more 50's in. Don't worry about the pace. Knock out a 60 if you can, perhaps a 70. But even so, as long as you don't mind taking a while, you can probably already do 100. Get your gear sorted, nutrition etc right.

    Mental state is often dealt with by having done something similar. But you rarely need to replicate an event to do an event, just treat whatever part of it is the hard part as part of your training. In this case it's mostly about distance.
    My blog: http://www.roubaixcycling.cc (kit reviews and other musings)
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  • imposter2.0
    imposter2.0 Posts: 12,028
    I was hoping for something structured but thanks for your reply.

    The 'structure' - such as it is - is to start with a few 50s and build up from there. Seriously, don't over-think it. The furthest I'd ridden before my first 100 was about 85 miles. It was only 15 miles more. It's not like climbing Everest.
  • bendertherobot
    bendertherobot Posts: 11,684
    Bit of googling suggests about 2500ft of climbing. Which isn't flat, but virtually so. General theme seems to be a relaxed event with plenty of people stopping for coffee and cake etc. Enjoy it.
    My blog: http://www.roubaixcycling.cc (kit reviews and other musings)
    https://twitter.com/roubaixcc
    Facebook? No. Just say no.
  • imafatman
    imafatman Posts: 351
    This would probably be a good start: https://www.britishcycling.org.uk/knowl ... nic-plan-0

    Before you've done 100 miles it seems like some properly difficult insurmountable task but it's really not that hard but put the hours in and plan to complete it well.... the last thing you want to do is scrape through and hate every minute of it.

    By the time the 12 weeks is up you should done a few longer rides 50-80 miles and you should be confident that you've done those rides no problem so the 100 will be absolutely fine.
  • paulwood
    paulwood Posts: 231
    I'd suggest that for a flat 100 then clothing, good bib shorts, and a planned nutrition strategy are at least as important as a training plan.

    But yes, if you can do 50 then do a slightly slower 75. If that goes OK then you can do a 100. Have fun.
  • StillGoing
    StillGoing Posts: 5,211
    A flat 100 is not as easy as you may think. At least with a rolling course, you get moments of respite giving you a chance to coast without losing momentum. On the flat, you're the driving force all the time.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • Thigh_burn
    Thigh_burn Posts: 489
    There's thisfor Ride London 100. But personally I'd focus on just getting miles in. If over the next few weeks you focus on three or four rides a week, with the mid week ones being fairly intense / fast but keeping a constant pace. Then on the weekend (or whenever you have some time) go for a longer ride and each week, add 10 miles. If you can do 80 miles, you'll be fine doing 100 miles.

    As it happens, when I did RL100 for the 1st time, I'd intended to do 80 miles a couple of weeks before, but my nutrition was totally out of whack and I bonked. Which meant I only did 60miles. So I went from 60miles to 100 miles and it was fine.

    But that ride where I bonked was brilliantly useful because of the lesson it taught me on nutrition and hydration. It's one of the biggest issues you'll face.
  • milemuncher1
    milemuncher1 Posts: 1,472
    A big problem most people who aren’t used to riding a group ride like this encounter, is riding in a large group, for such a long time. The concentration levels are hard to maintain over that duration. Concentrate on getting out on group rides, get used to calling / signaling, what those calls / signals mean. If you’re physically fit enough to do 50-75 miles solo, you’ll have no worries doing a 100 in a group, draughting will save you a good chunk of effort, this will count as you get to the end. If you’re not used to riding longer distances, it’s best to concentrate on keeping your heart rate / Power, in your personal zones 1 and 2 for as long as possible. This will also have an effect on your pre ride / in Ride, fuelling / eating regime. At relatively low intensity ( recommend for what will be a relative endurance effort for you, by my reckoning) your body will be fuelling with the equilibrium pushed towards mostly fat burning, propped up with Glycogen / triglycerides, rather than the other way round, as you’d find if you were doing as a high intensity ‘race’ scenario, where your body would be relying for more heavily on the ‘low hanging fruit’ ( Glycogen etc.) so try to get some fat reserves built up, in the days before the event, and make sure your liver and muscles have as much Glycogen stored in them before the event
    as they can store. During the ride, if you keep your power / heart rate in a relatively low zone for as long as possible, you won’t need a lot of quick release / sugary stuff, to keep you comfortable. Eat something with a bit of ‘stodge’ at any food stops you use, rather than quick release / sugary stuff. Make sure you stay hydrated, and ( as before ) if you keep your efforts in ‘endurance’ for as long as possible, you shouldn’t need anything but water, and possibly some electrolyte stuff, if it’s a warm day, and you’ve sweated a lot.
  • webboo
    webboo Posts: 6,087
    Or you could do a 50 mile ride with two computers and record it as one ride of 100 miles.
  • imposter2.0
    imposter2.0 Posts: 12,028
    Webboo wrote:
    Or you could do a 50 mile ride with two computers and record it as one ride of 100 miles.

    Boom! We have a winner :lol:
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    For that kind of distance it's a combination of fitness, eating and drinking, and being comfortable on the bike for 8 hours or more. What usually limits my longer rides is not fitness, but neck / hand / shoulder pain.
    As other have said, it's not complicated, you just need to increase the length of your rides gradually.

    Assuming you can fit in one decent ride a week, and you're already comfortable riding 50 miles, aim for something like:

    week 1 50 miles
    week 2 55 miles
    week 3 60 miles
    week 4 65 miles
    week 5 rest or easy 25 miles
    week 6 70 miles
    week 7 75 miles
    week 8 80 miles
    week 9 rest or easy 25 miles
    week 10 85 miles
    week 11 50 miles
    week 12 100 mile event

    If you manage to hit the 80 mile mark and you've sorted your food*, drink, clothing and contact points out, you'll easily manage 100 on the day.

    *I'd be eating pasta the night before and a large bowl of porridge for breakfast on the day, but you'll know what works best for you. Other carbohydrate sources are available. Terms and conditions apply.
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    And don't worry about your liver, glycogen, triglycerides, fat-burning or trying to pick any low hanging fruit while cycling...
  • mrb123
    mrb123 Posts: 4,653
    I've heard it said that if you can do 100 miles in a week then you can do 100 miles in a single ride, and from experience there's probably some truth in that.

    If you think about a week with a 50 mile ride in it and then 2 or 3 shorter rides to make up the other 50 then it doesn't sound too bad to get to that mileage.

    As others have said, don't over think it. Just build up your mileages gradually and take your time on the day.
  • imposter2.0
    imposter2.0 Posts: 12,028
    keef66 wrote:
    or trying to pick any low hanging fruit while cycling...

    I tried it once - I crashed...
  • N0bodyOfTheGoat
    N0bodyOfTheGoat Posts: 5,898
    From a pretty low fitness baseline and having been very overweight since my bike commute rta just before Xmas 2013, I started cycling for fitness in January 2017. As a guess, I've done maybe ~20 rides of 50-85 miles over the last year, most weeks I try to do at least one 30-50 mile ride where I try to average 300+W up a few cat4s and/or the Petetsfield cat3 (now I've got a power meter, for just over a year I was simply chasing my PBs).

    I'm not really that interested in distances currently, but out of nowhere, I randomly decided to try and tick the 100+ mile box a few weeks back. A week later, I did 103 miles with ~8972 feet of climbing, covering most of the popular cat hills on the west side of the South Downs. It wasn't fast, I was outdoors for ~9.5 hours including a puncture repair; a few food/drinks stops; navigation stops; with a weighty rucksack on my back carrying an extra 2l water beyond what I had in bike bottles plus other gear.

    If I can do it, I'm sure most are capable.
    ================
    2020 Voodoo Marasa
    2017 Cube Attain GTC Pro Disc 2016
    2016 Voodoo Wazoo
  • milemuncher1
    milemuncher1 Posts: 1,472
    Imposter wrote:
    Webboo wrote:
    Or you could do a 50 mile ride with two computers and record it as one ride of 100 miles.

    Boom! We have a winner :lol:


    Yeah, it doesn’t work like that, but you wouldn’t know that, because you don’t actually ride enough.
  • milemuncher1
    milemuncher1 Posts: 1,472
    Pay for a proper bike fitting. It will be money very well spent.
  • imposter2.0
    imposter2.0 Posts: 12,028
    Imposter wrote:
    Webboo wrote:
    Or you could do a 50 mile ride with two computers and record it as one ride of 100 miles.

    Boom! We have a winner :lol:


    Yeah, it doesn’t work like that, but you wouldn’t know that, because you don’t actually ride enough.

    True - maybe I should start uploading my rides twice, like you do...
  • Pituophis
    Pituophis Posts: 1,025
    The Manchester 100 is in the gently rolling Cheshire plains. It isn't flat, but there are only one or two very short hills. There are no "climbs". I think when we did it, there was about 1500ft all in. (Not done it for 5 or 6 years though.)
    When I did it I had never been further than 70 miles (though I had done a good few hilly 50's and 60's) and to be honest, it was pretty easy. :)
    Four of us did it together, and as two had never been that far, we took it fairly easy, just chatting and having a laugh with other riders. I think this is a big help. We "picked up" a very pleasant young lady who stayed with us for around 30 miles, until she reunited with her boyfriend. (He can't have been looking too hard???) She did say it was a big help having others to ride with to take he mind off the ride, and she was obviously a fairly competent cyclist herself.(No worse than me. :D )
    It is staggered into groups for setting off, and we just tried to get away from the main bunch before easing off. Just to avoid the crowded first few corners, but it wasn't bad at all considering the numbers that do the ride. It is all on open roads, but the motorists were pretty tolerant to be fair, as it must be a nightmare for anyone living on the route!
    There were three feed/water stops, but we only stopped once. I just took extra food and nibbled away through out the ride which seemed to help.
    It is an nice, easy going atmosphere and most of the quicker guys are gone before you even notice.
    Enjoy it.
  • milemuncher1
    milemuncher1 Posts: 1,472
    Imposter wrote:
    Imposter wrote:
    Webboo wrote:
    Or you could do a 50 mile ride with two computers and record it as one ride of 100 miles.

    Boom! We have a winner :lol:


    Yeah, it doesn’t work like that, but you wouldn’t know that, because you don’t actually ride enough.

    True - maybe I should start uploading my rides twice, like you do...

    That would require you to have a ride to upload.
  • imposter2.0
    imposter2.0 Posts: 12,028
    Imposter wrote:
    Imposter wrote:
    Webboo wrote:
    Or you could do a 50 mile ride with two computers and record it as one ride of 100 miles.

    Boom! We have a winner :lol:


    Yeah, it doesn’t work like that, but you wouldn’t know that, because you don’t actually ride enough.

    True - maybe I should start uploading my rides twice, like you do...

    That would require you to have a ride to upload.

    I uploaded one this morning - does that count? I was tempted to upload it twice, just to make it look better to others...but then I realised I'm not a desperate walt like you ;)
  • imafatman wrote:
    This would probably be a good start: https://www.britishcycling.org.uk/knowl ... nic-plan-0

    Before you've done 100 miles it seems like some properly difficult insurmountable task

    Yes, currently definitely feeling insurmountable! I think for me it's going to be mind over matter...
  • Ballysmate wrote:

    That looks good - thanks!
  • philthy3 wrote:
    A flat 100 is not as easy as you may think. At least with a rolling course, you get moments of respite giving you a chance to coast without losing momentum. On the flat, you're the driving force all the time.

    Yes, I'm concerned about my neck, back and bum!

    The other downside to flat rides is that you can't escape any headwind, so I'm hoping for a still day!
  • keef66 wrote:
    For that kind of distance it's a combination of fitness, eating and drinking, and being comfortable on the bike for 8 hours or more. What usually limits my longer rides is not fitness, but neck / hand / shoulder pain.
    As other have said, it's not complicated, you just need to increase the length of your rides gradually.

    Assuming you can fit in one decent ride a week, and you're already comfortable riding 50 miles, aim for something like:

    week 1 50 miles
    week 2 55 miles
    week 3 60 miles
    week 4 65 miles
    week 5 rest or easy 25 miles
    week 6 70 miles
    week 7 75 miles
    week 8 80 miles
    week 9 rest or easy 25 miles
    week 10 85 miles
    week 11 50 miles
    week 12 100 mile event

    If you manage to hit the 80 mile mark and you've sorted your food*, drink, clothing and contact points out, you'll easily manage 100 on the day.

    *I'd be eating pasta the night before and a large bowl of porridge for breakfast on the day, but you'll know what works best for you. Other carbohydrate sources are available. Terms and conditions apply.

    Thank you, this is helpful!
  • Pituophis wrote:
    The Manchester 100 is in the gently rolling Cheshire plains. It isn't flat, but there are only one or two very short hills. There are no "climbs". I think when we did it, there was about 1500ft all in. (Not done it for 5 or 6 years though.)
    When I did it I had never been further than 70 miles (though I had done a good few hilly 50's and 60's) and to be honest, it was pretty easy. :)
    Four of us did it together, and as two had never been that far, we took it fairly easy, just chatting and having a laugh with other riders. I think this is a big help. We "picked up" a very pleasant young lady who stayed with us for around 30 miles, until she reunited with her boyfriend. (He can't have been looking too hard???) She did say it was a big help having others to ride with to take he mind off the ride, and she was obviously a fairly competent cyclist herself.(No worse than me. :D )
    It is staggered into groups for setting off, and we just tried to get away from the main bunch before easing off. Just to avoid the crowded first few corners, but it wasn't bad at all considering the numbers that do the ride. It is all on open roads, but the motorists were pretty tolerant to be fair, as it must be a nightmare for anyone living on the route!
    There were three feed/water stops, but we only stopped once. I just took extra food and nibbled away through out the ride which seemed to help.
    It is an nice, easy going atmosphere and most of the quicker guys are gone before you even notice.
    Enjoy it.

    Thank you! I'm apprehensive about riding with lots of others, but hopefully it'll be OK. Hopefully If I can get on my bike 4 times a week with one long ride (and lose a stone in the process), I might just about manage to complete it.

    I'm hoping that by getting sponsorship it'll force me to keep going when I might otherwise give up...
  • apreading
    apreading Posts: 4,535
    I think, as others have said, that you could probably do it right now. First time I did a 50 it felt hard physically. Next time it was fine. First time I did a 100 the physical side was no harder but there is a mental thing where you need to believe you can do it and you need to not get fed up riding for much longer.

    At 50, you should have sorted the main things out - your bike should fit you, your technique should be appropriate and your nutrition should work for endurance. I would just ask youself - after you do a 50 are there any 'problems'? Do you ache, feel low on energy, struggle to get up hills near the end? If you do then there might be something that you need to tweak but if not then the lat 10 miles of that 50 ride are probably not much different to the next 50 miles other than the mental will that you need to keep going.

    As others have said - just ride more. 100 really isnt much harder than 50 but you need to convince yourself of that and believe you can do it. The best way is to get nearer to it in training.