PROBLEM: You’ve been able to ride just 15 to 20 miles about three times a week, but now you’re all fired up to ride a century that’s only a month away.
SOLUTION: Here’s the rule of thumb for long, one-day bicycle rides: You can do your average weekly mileage in one ride if you just want to finish. So, if your weekly average is no more than 60 miles, doing a century will be pushing it.
There’s no sure-fire magic we can offer. But we know this probably won’t stop you (and others in the same boat) from trying!
To make the most of the training time left, it’s crucial to do long rides on three consecutive weekends between now and your target date. The first ride should be about 40 miles, the second around 55, and the third about 70.
Eat and drink well before, during, and after these rides. Go slowly — your only goal is to finish. During the week, do two or three easy rides of about an hour each.
This isn’t optimum preparation, but it will give you a fighting chance to finish the century.
Should you fail to finish the long training rides, this will tell you that you shouldn’t expect to finish 100 miles. Choose a century ride later in the fall or next season to give yourself time to build a better base.
For a much more detailed look at training for a century ride, check out this article.
Kenneth Pierce says
This is good and very practical advice. After 30 years of cycling I finally did my first Century a few years ago, I worked to up an 80mi ride one week prior to my first event. It paid off as I finished in appx 6hrs and still felt good. I now love these long and challenging rides so much I do 4-6 a season.
Heed this articles advice and also stop at every rest stop to help insure you don’t get over zealous and push too hard. Best of luck to you all!