Tips for a Strong Cyclist: Riding on a Multi-Day Group Ride

I have a friend about to embark on a long cycling trip. She is by far the strongest rider in the group.  She is required to stay with the group but is not quite sure how to do it.  She is worried that she will lose fitness.  She does not want to be the first person kicked off the ride.

Here are my tips for her to continue to triathlon train AND have a challenging cycling experience.

  1. Map out pools in every city you stop.  Before my RAGBRAI trip, I had my virtual assistant research pool availability in every city.  He produced a list of pools for me with addresses, maps and hours each pool would be open.  After the day’s ride ended I would add a ride to the pool for my swim.
  2. Start each morning with a run before your group departs to put some fatigue in your legs.  Do this daily.  Keep it easy to steady and no longer than sixty minutes.
  3. Wear baggy clothing on the bike.  Think of it as a drag suit.
  4. Wear extra clothing to practice heat training.  Hydrate often.
  5. Pull.  All.  The.  Time.
  6. Bring a back pack with ten to twenty pounds of weight of in it. Wear while riding.
  7. Practice one leg cycling.  Up the hill.  No one likes a jerk, so just do this quietly.
  8. Choose heavier wheels and knobbier tires.  Don’t even think about bringing the race wheels.
  9. Tow someone up a hill.  I once had a super strong rider put his hand on my back and help push me up the hill.  Just another reminder that I am not a climber!
  10. Practice high cadence cycling.  Keep your gearing super light and pedal at 100 RPM’s plus.

You can still have a great trip, get fit and be a team player. Enjoy the ride!


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