Training Tips

LSD (Long Steady Distance)


1.  Start out slow: We all get accustomed to the pacing and perceived exertion we experience during typical training rides, but these rides are often 60 minutes to 3 hours in duration. When you’re going out for 6+ hours, it pays to deliberately rein yourself in for at least the first hour. From a power output standpoint, riding like a champ in the first hour often leads to a lower average power over the course of the whole ride. If you’re using this ultra-long training session to develop the power and endurance for a long goal event, the training stimulus you’re after will come from being able to maintain a higher power output during the final two hours, not the first two. 

2.  Eat, Eat, and Eat: Again, those of us who are used to shorter training rides are also accustomed to eating somewhat sparsely during those rides; you’re done soon enough that you can replenish depleted energy stores with a post-ride meal. If you don’t increase your calorie intake in anticipation of being on the bike for 6+ hours, you’re likely to find yourself seriously behind on energy intake about 4-5 hours into the ride. 

3.  Keep your ego in check: no group of riders is perfectly matched, and for the success of the whole group, it’s important for each person to ride within their true ability level. If you’re one of the stronger riders, take longer pulls but not faster ones. You get the stimulus you need without putting the weaker riders into difficulty too early in the day. If you’re not one of the stronger riders, take shorter pulls or even sit in for the first couple of hours. You’ll be a better help to the group if you can pull in the second half, and riding conservatively in the beginning will reduce the chances that anyone will have to wait for you later.


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