Getting ready for the big ride

I signed myself up for the Outlaw Trail 100 and am planning on riding the 100 mile loop along with the Bike Noob.  Weather conditions should be pretty good and as long as the wind stays down, it should be a fun ride.  It’s still a long way and I’m looking at about 6 hours or so in the saddle.  My bike’s ready to go and I plan on attending the pasta dinner they offered.

Most longer rides I’ve done usually involve some kind of carb load the night before and a decent breakfast the morning of the ride.  Obviously, staying well-hydrated during the ride is pretty important, but so is staying well fed.  Depending on the level of effort I put forth, I could easily burn upwards of 5o00 or 6000 calories.  I think my highest calorie total on a ride this year was around 7500 (107 miles on the Hill Country Armadillo into the wind both ways).  There’s no way you can eat that much food during the ride, so you have to start preparing a day or two before hand.  As important as it is to eat certain foods, it’s just as important to avoid other types of food.

Pasta’s always a good choice.    I’ll try and avoid anything with processed sugar in it.  I also will bring a small bottle of pickle juice in case I get cramps.  I usually don’t, but the last think you want is to be stranded along the side of the road with leg cramps.  Pickle juice works amazingly well and my local HEB sells it in the sports drink aisle.  I’ll also bring along some nuun tablets.  I’m not a big fan of sweetened Gatorade, which is what I find on most of these rides.

How do you prepare for longer rides?  I’m always looking for good tips, so I’d love to hear from you.

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One response to “Getting ready for the big ride

  1. I’m no expert, but what I read is that tapering physical activity the week before is a good thing and carbo loading can begin several days in advance, not just the night before. During the ride, keep your heart rate down in Zone 3 (be able to carry on a conversation while riding) and eat/drink a little bit regularly – not all at once at the rest stops. Good luck!

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