Friday, June 13, 2014

RAGBRAI training report, two weeks in

As I mentioned last week, RAGBRAI crept up on me while I was fretting about Dam to Dam.

So I'm happy to declare today that I feel positive about the state of my seat, about two weeks into training.

I did download the training plan; I do look at it; I do write down my mileage; and I have compared my weekly totals to what the plan suggests. Key word — suggests.

Here's my approach so far:

* Go on a long ride each week.

* Get a ride in the day after that, if possible.

* Incorporate a hill in most recreational rides.

* Design loops to avoid trail fatigue.

* Ride to places far away at which you need just one, portable thing. (Examples thus far: produce from a quarter-share in a CSA from a Johnston apartment complex; medicine from a pharmacy at 100th and Douglas in Urbandale.)

* Invite people to join at least portions of the rides.

It's only two weeks in, but I feel comfortable with this attitude, and I feel comfortable in my fitness level. It's not perfect, but it's good enough, and it'll get better.

What's helpful is having done RAGBRAI last year, and with the same people I'm doing it with this year — I know their tendencies, and this time I'll know how to balance my own with theirs.

Basically that means ride my pace, rather than struggle to keep up, because I don't like prolonged stops anyways. Let them get their first beer out of the way before I hop off the saddle.

Our long ride on Sunday — 75 flat miles — was critical to both realizing I'm on the right track, fitnesswise, and to reminding me of my riding preferences versus others'.

The next test: not falling off the wagon over the next two weeks, which are fairly busy with nonbiking commitments.

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