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Liverpool Chester Liverpool - Advice needed!

Hello everyone - have signed myself up for the Liverpool Chester Liverpool ride on Sunday - http://www.liverpoolchesterliverpool.com/ - and would love some advice.

I've always been a cyclist as a form of transport, but never really cycled much more than 20 miles in a week. In the last few months I've wanted to cycle more and further. I did the Wirral Bikeathon (28 miles) last month. Before I thought it would kill me, but I kicked it's censored 2 1/2 hours and felt fantastic afterwards, so quickly signed myself for the 30 miles Liverpool Chester ride on Sunday, mostly cause I wanted to ride through the Birkenhead tunnel.

I've been on three rides in the Wirral the last two weekends, of 37, 38 and 25 miles,as well as 10 - 20 mile rides on several weekday evenings along the prom and through parks, which have all been pretty flat but involved lots of cycling into the wind. I've really enjoyed these and have cycled a few extra miles on each end the rides (to/from the ferry/train station) as well as day to day travelling around.

For information I'm a girl, 20-odd, pretty fat (16 stone), but a confident cyclist and haven't had any issue covering the distances I've mentioned. I've a cheapo 21 gear hybrid from Viking, but it's behaved itself perfectly recently and I'm hoping to get it serviced before Sunday.

I'd like to upgrade from the 30mile Liverpool Chester ride to the 54 mile Liverpool Chester Liverpool. Is this crazy? What should I be looking at in terms of recovery/energy drinks? I've got some very faithful cycling shorts from Corine Dennis (patron saint of fat cyclists), but is there any other kit I should be looking into? Anything else I need to bear in mind?

Posts

  • mr_pollmr_poll Posts: 1,612
    Firstly congrats on taking up cycling - and also for pushing yourself for the challenge of 54 miles.

    Firstly one word of warning - studies show that when taking up something new people over indulge then end up dropping out as they cannot maintain such intensity (the gym is a prime example ppl go 4/5 times a week for 3 weeks and then burn out cannot maintain it and stop going) so there is an argument to say keep doing what your doing and only increase thing over time.

    However I dont want to burst your bubble and if your determined then go for it. Not sure what this ride is like for feedstations (which will provide you with food and drink) - but for me the things you could do with:

    Drink - avoid the lucozade sports of this world sticky and sickly sweet if you have to go for the zero ones - if you have money to throw at it then you can electrolyte powders to mix in water (specialist shops or holland and barratt have them) - as a minimum water and keep hydrated or you will suffer esp if hot.

    Food - Night before a carby tea (pasta) - breakfast something with oats (porridge/granola) these provide slow release energy Then carry either some flapjacks and/or banana's (jelly babies/jelly beans are good for a hit of sugar) again if u have cash then the shops i mentioned above have sports bars and gels (for more immediate boost).

    Equipment - Phone with the number of the organisers in it if they are providing mech support if not then a friend/family in case. Dont let a P***ture ruin your day have a spare inner tube and pump just in case.

    Recovery drinks - Celebratory Wine!!! Its been documented that chocolate milkshake does the job can help or again you can spend loads on scientifically formaulated stuff, but these are meant to be had with 30/40 mins of the end of exercise.

    In addition look in the sportive part of the road bike forum there is loads there.
  • PokerfacePokerface Posts: 8,640
    First - I love your honesty about your sex and weight. And nothing wrong with that. A few years ago I was 18.5 stone and could barely cycle 5 miles. Now I'm 12 stone and riding for a National team. Just takes perseverance.

    You've ridden 38 miles before (and recently it seems). 54 miles shouldn't be too much of a stretch - especially with loads of other people around you.

    The ride will probably have food/drink stops - make sure to get loads of water/energy drink in you. Hydration is key for a longer event.

    Keep up the good work and best of luck in the ride! (Post when it's over and let us know how you did)
  • Cleat EastwoodCleat Eastwood Posts: 7,510
    Bonjour and welcome.

    I'm doing the 90 mile challenge on sunday and have done the 54 miler previously (the first time like you to just experience the tunnel).

    It's a flat 54 miler with the odd hump and bump but nothing major. There are foodstops at the wirral rugby club where a local group sell cakes bananas and drinks, oh and there are toilets too.

    Thats at 15 miles in. Loads stop there for a chat and a natter.

    Then theres a stop at the countess of chester hopspital, theres a food tent (fruit etc) and an ice cream man and a standing pipe to fill your bottles. Thats about 30 miles and then you head back, passing, if you need it the wirral rugby club again.

    At the countess loads of people just doss on the grass for half an hour or so, so theres no rush.

    It's a realxed ride and all i used to take was a few nibbles for eating on the road eg energy bars, raisins and some buttys for when I got to the chester hospital.

    All sorts do it so I wouldnt be self conscious about your weight, and the tunnel closes at 3 so you have about 7 hours just to enjoy the ride....oh and the farmyard you have to pass through.

    Some of the route is a bit flinty and offroad so I'd make sure your tyres are in tip top condition.

    So if I was you I'd take an enegy bar or two, water/isotonic drink, and maybe some gels just in case you feel a bit overcooked near the end.

    Good luck and dont forget to let on if you see me, just look for a handsome 6ft george clooney look-a-like on a dead expensive bike.......and I'll be right behind him. :D

    And dont forget to report back on how you got on.
    The dissenter is every human being at those moments of his life when he resigns
    momentarily from the herd and thinks for himself.
  • Thank you for all your comments and advice. Giving thought to what goes in my pannier and I'll let you know how i get on.

    @Cleat Really appreciate your detailed description of the ride. I'm going to ride the first 30 miles with a friend who's comfortable riding speed is fair bit slower than mine, so will take it very easy at first. Good luck with the challenge!
  • SNACK-HEADSNACK-HEAD Posts: 35
    When you go through the tunnel, downhill ! the in- experienced riders get all excited reaching dizzy speeds and flap, causing possible pile ups. The tunnel is closed to cars so make use of all the room on the right hand side and stay well out of the way of the masses.
    HAVE FUN . You will be with plenty of like minded riders so enjoy the action.
    PART TIME WASTER
  • SNACK-HEAD Oh no, you've given me something new to worry about! I've only been concerned about the climb out of the tunnel. Would you think it was pathetic if I admitted to practising by repeatedly riding up Mount Pleasant?
  • Cleat EastwoodCleat Eastwood Posts: 7,510
    SNACK-HEAD Oh no, you've given me something new to worry about! I've only been concerned about the climb out of the tunnel. Would you think it was pathetic if I admitted to practising by repeatedly riding up Mount Pleasant?

    Mount pleasant is actually steeper than the tunnel, its just that the tunnel is longer, so it sounds like you'll be just fine. steady pace and bobs your uncle.
    The dissenter is every human being at those moments of his life when he resigns
    momentarily from the herd and thinks for himself.
  • SNACK-HEADSNACK-HEAD Posts: 35
    Magpie , i practice 3-5 times a week for when im good. Thats what this cycling lark is all about.
    I used to practice laps around sefton park with the runners , then moved on to pracice down otterspool to the Albert dock.
    Now enjoy 100 mile rides with a few mates , dropped weight without trying and feel much healthier than i did on sunday mornings previously when i would just be crawling out of "Cream" in Liverpool .
    PART TIME WASTER
  • Okay chaps - I did it! 54 miles in pretty much bang on 4 hours and I'm pretty pleased with myself. Held a lot back for the climb out of the tunnel, which wasn't nearly as bad as I expected. So, although I know there's plenty of room for improvement, I know I can look for new challenges.

    Even if you are not impressed by that time, please note I did it in a Led Zeppelin tshirt and gold sandals, so deserve points for style.

    Now to conk out for an hour while I dream of fast road bikes and ladies jerseys that are any colour other than pink.
  • Cleat EastwoodCleat Eastwood Posts: 7,510
    Thats brilliant well done, you certainly deserve a rest. Isnt it great riding in groups. I did the challenge in 5:30, and that inspite of being sent the wrong way for 6 miles. Haha. We did pass a millionaires house though so I'm going back there later with me jemmy. :D

    Well done anyway and hope you do many more now the bugs bitten.
    The dissenter is every human being at those moments of his life when he resigns
    momentarily from the herd and thinks for himself.
  • Well done to you too!

    Certainly planning more group rides. Thinking about looking into clubs, although I know I'll have to build my fitness considerably first!

    (p.s. If you nick anything sparkly don't forget my username is Magpie for a reason!)
  • John MooreJohn Moore Posts: 580
    Did it on 3 hours riding time with 9 mates. We had a couple of long stops at Countess and the Rugby club. 8.30 start 12.15 finish.

    I didn't see your gold sandals

    Not bad even if I say so myself as they were on road bikes and I was on this 37lbs monster bike with 4" wide tyres

    5894360319_193625b872_z.jpg
    July 2nd - Ready To Do The Tunnel by Johnclimber, on Flickr
  • I remember that over taking me! Probably particularly noted it after chatting with the nice people at Keep Pedalling Manchester about their mad/awesome Surly snow bike on Thursday.

    Next year I'll do it in kitten heels and a sun dress on a three speed Pashley... maybe.
  • mr_pollmr_poll Posts: 1,612
    Congrats - I saw a lot of riders in L.Pool today and was v jealous as I had my kids so was out shopping - yawnnnn.
  • John MooreJohn Moore Posts: 580
    Past plenty of roadies on route
    5898036949_2df6ba9f2e_z.jpg
    July 3rd - Roadies Pah by Johnclimber
  • Cleat EastwoodCleat Eastwood Posts: 7,510
    I remember that over taking me! Probably particularly noted it after chatting with the nice people at Keep Pedalling Manchester about their mad/awesome Surly snow bike on Thursday.

    Next year I'll do it in kitten heels and a sun dress on a three speed Pashley... maybe.

    copycat :D

    and well done john moore, thats more tank than bike. :)
    The dissenter is every human being at those moments of his life when he resigns
    momentarily from the herd and thinks for himself.
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