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1  - 14 April 2013 14:15

I appreciate this might be a 'how long is a piece of string' type question, but any help would still be appreciated.

So I quite fancy the idea of doing kielder this year, but having never ridden that far I don't know the size of the commitment I'd need to make to train for it.  My aim would be just to finish.

I've ridden one 50 mile mtb ride last year - I struggled after about 30-35 and crawled home just shy of 7 hours - which was a reality check as I know that's some way short of kielder pace and only half the distance.

I'd prefer to steer clear of long mtb rides for training because its hard going on me and the bike.. so building up endurance on the road (which is fairly new to me)...  what sort of distances / times should I be aiming for ?   150 miles? 

Any advice would be welcome

2  - 14 April 2013 16:35

If you're not prepared to put the training in off road then what's the point? Kielder 100 is an MTB not road event, riding off road is completely different and you need to be able to handle it (the bike will be fine). 

People were out for up to 13hrs or so, just look at last year's results.

3  - 14 April 2013 17:54
Em wrote:

If you're not prepared to put the training in off road then what's the point? Kielder 100 is an MTB not road event, riding off road is completely different and you need to be able to handle it (the bike will be fine).

It's a bit of a roadie course though in fairness (Ive done it twice), I'd say around 20% mtb work would be more than substantial for it, depending on how much time you have to train. It's not a technical course, but some core workouts at least once a week would be a good idea.  Hard to say targets for training, but on a long ride 4-6 hours or so, its good to aim for at least 1000 feet an hour of vert gain, or if  your doing around 100 miles, then somewhere around 6 to 6.5 hours would be a good time that would set you up well to finish the Kielder. I wouldn't recommend any training rides over 7 hours long and not very often for a ride that long.

4  - 14 April 2013 19:58
Em wrote:

If you're not prepared to put the training in off road then what's the point? Kielder 100 is an MTB not road event, riding off road is completely different and you need to be able to handle it (the bike will be fine). 

People were out for up to 13hrs or so, just look at last year's results.


I'll still be riding the mtb and doing the occasional big ride but for various reasons it's easier to build up my endurance on the road.   That's all.  I assume thats not dissimilar to how most people approach it?

5  - 15 April 2013 06:40

OK, I was a bit harsh before, however I maintain that you do need to do some long mtb rides as it's about getting the body used to the pounding it's going to get (be it mainly fireroads or not) and making sure that you are mentally prepared as well which your statement of "I'd prefer to steer clear of long mtb rides for training because its hard going on me " doesn't match with.

Also, how about doing some 6hr events or Schwalbe Marathons to 'get your eye in' so to speak as to where you're at. There's also the option of doing the 50mile (??) at Kielder for starters and then work up to full distance.

I would think that you need to start building time in the saddle up at weekends. I don't know what time you can ride for at the moment but lets say it's 3hrs. So, a couple of those and then move it up to 3.5hrs, then 4hrs etc. I'm not a long distance specialist but probably want to stay somewhere at the 5-6hr mainly with perhaps the odd foray into longer territory. It's all about time on the bike not distance.  If there is any other way you can fit riding into daily routine (i.e. commute or before/after work) then that's even better.

Last edited by Em (15 April 2013 06:40)

6  - 15 April 2013 11:01

Check out the Time Crunched Cyclist, which has some good "Century-type" training programmes.  One point I'd I'd particularly stress its that, even though most of your training sessions can be shorter, you should really include a couple of very long, 6+hr, rides on the MTB in the couple of months leading up to the event.  This will:

1. Build up your endurance for just sitting on and riding the bike for long sessions (nb that you also keep riding, and not stopping half the time, as people tend to do at most trail centres!);

2. Highlight any "comfort/fit" issues that you may have with equipment which aren't necessarily apparent on shorter rides (something that's just a slight niggle, can become total agony after 6+hrs, and easily lead to a DNF or serious injury later on); and

3. Get you familiar with and used to the critical hydration and nutrition aspects of riding for these very long durations (there is some good info on this in the TCC book as well).

While doing the rides off-road is certainly preferrable, on road with slick tyres is also a very good alternative.

As mentioned above, I also find that some core strength work off the bike each week is a great help in preparing for these ulta-distance events.

Hope this helps, and best of luck!

Last edited by Boneyjoe (15 April 2013 11:03)

7  - 15 April 2013 16:10

a long ride 4-6 hours or so, its good to aim for at least 1000 feet an hour of vert gain

Living in Lincolnshire I'm lucky to get that in total, never mind per hour!
As above, you will need some long MTB rides but the next best thing is some long road rides. And remember, there is a big difference between riding for 10hrs and racing for 10hrs. If you are training on the road try to join a group ride, 100miles at flat-out group pace is properly tough, you just won't push yourself as hard on your own.
I know you said you are just trying to finish and not race, but even if you aren't racing other people you will have to beat the cut-offs, you can't just bimble about looking at the scenery I'm afraid.

Blog and other ramblings http://andrewhowett.blogspot.com

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