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Whew, first group ride - Report and fitness report!(7 posts)

Whew, first group ride - Report and fitness report!Wannabe
Aug 30, 2001 6:20 AM
This is my second attempt at posting my report. Hopefully this makes it through...

Well, I made it. I survived my first group ride last night. A local cycling club has a wednesday night ride that they proclaim as being their "slow" ride. I don't know about slow though! The ride was 25 miles and they averaged just under 19 mph for the ride. I managed to prevent getting dropped, but I did quite a bit of wheel-sucking at times! But they were a very cool group and encouraged me to wheel-suck if I needed to. Like they kept telling me: "If it's there, take it!" Like I said, a very cool group.

On another note, my heart-rate was through the roof for that ride! Normaly, when I ride alone, I average around 147-155 bpm for my 1hr20min rides. Last night I think I averaged (my monitor doesn't record average HR, bummer) around 177 or so! I know I looked down a couple of times when my lungs were bursting and it read 188 or 189! Once into the ride I don't EVER remember seeing anything less than 180bpm! Yikes! On a good note though, within 15 minutes of finishing the ride, my HR was back down to 110 bpm and on the ride home it was back into the low 90s. This morning, my legs are tired, but not sore. So I think I came through okay!

Well, looking forward to next Wednesday ngiht!

Andy - Wannabe
Hey, Good Job!Greg Taylor
Aug 30, 2001 7:33 AM
Sounds like you connected up with a good group. You certainly got a wicked cardio workout!
Good job! Nothing like other riders around to ...Humma Hah
Aug 30, 2001 7:42 AM
... bring out your best effort. All of my best efforts are either "chasing rabbits" or with a group.

My best hillclimbs are usually in the presence of a trim young lady. I'll be double-darned if I'll stop to rest while she can see it.
group rides and pace linesTig
Aug 30, 2001 8:14 AM
Sounds like ya did good! If you're not used to riding in a group, it can be a little nerve racking at first. If you feel your hands gripping too hard, tell yourself to relax. Stiff arms make you weave more and tire you out quicker. Don't be afraid to ask questions about what to do. Most people would rather answer a question than see you do something that could cause a crash. A few generally accepted rules of pace line riding below can be used in close group riding:

Don't let your wheel overlap the rider's rear wheel in front of you.

Don't use aerobars unless off the back.

Try not to coast too much. This causes a slinky effect behind you. Try to lightly pedal a little slower cadence to drift back a few inched from the wheel in front of you.

Don't brake too hard. Try to adjust the gap in front of you with pedal speed.

Ride a strait line.

Don't stare at the rider's rear tire in front of you. Try to look through them. You can predict changes sooner this way.

If in front: call out obstacles like bumps, glass and potholes. Call out traffic warnings. Keep the pace that the rider who just finished pulling was at, or the pace the group is riding. Wait until you drift back to eat and drink. When pulling off at the end of your pull, say so, and don't slow down until you are out of the way of the riders following you. If in a dual pace line, let your partner know when you are ready to finish your pull. Keep your bike even with your partner's. Drift to the outside of the column (if on the right column, pull off to the right/left column, pull off to the left). When drifting back, don't drop your pace too much or you'll collide with the rider behind you that pulled before you. Don't try to impress everyone with a long pull. Stay there only as long as you feel good or have reached the desired muscle burn or HR.

It sounds like too many damned rules, but this keeps everything safe. People that ride without consideration are usually not welcome in a pace line for very long. Don't pull until you feel strong enough to be up there in front. When sucking wheel, try to keep yourself in the draft. I see many people 2 bike lengths back, suffering needlessly. When someone comes off a pull and drifts back, let them know to come back in front of you and open up a useful gap. A smooth pace line runs like a well-oiled machine. People who are willing to learn the mechanics of one are always welcome back.
Thoughts on HR during your ridenestorl
Aug 30, 2001 8:53 AM
Good Job Andy. I few thoughts.. Your HR was up not only because of the pace, but because of the adrenaline that is elicited by the group. This happens when people are new to group riding and races. With time, you hr will resemble normalcy once you get use to the group. The reason some people suggest not to bother with HR monitors during races (this is extremely controversial and I do notfully buy it) is because the social stress of the race makes a hr monitor an unreliable measure of vo2max; thus your “zones” would be completely off. Sometimes I do leave my hr at home but mostly when I am training my pedaling stroke. During stressful group rides, I ignore my hr since it is sometimes in the 190 range even though I am only in that range when I am sprinting.

And a good advise about group riding…..even the hardcore-cat3- “I only talk to you if you are good” alpha-riders of the group, admire more consistency and commitment than performance. By this I mean, it does not matter if you get drop every week, as long as you are there every week they will like you. Who they hate? Mr. show off dura ace bike that comes to the ride once every two months and gets drop every time…. . Oops I think that is me ….
re: Whew, first group ride - Report and fitness report!randymh
Aug 30, 2001 9:48 AM
Congrats. I did my first 25 miler with someone else last week. I was late for the group ride so me and another guy went out together. He was a little more advanced then me so I had to push a little harder then usual. Try to get out and do a slow ride today. I also felt very good the next day until I tried to ride, and found that my legs were like jelly. I'm sure you'll be a lot stronger next week.
Happy riding
Ah... reminds me of my first group rideDuane Gran
Aug 30, 2001 11:13 AM
Last year I did my first group ride in the early winter. I thought I was in pretty good shape, but man alive did I get my butt kicked. People were idly chatting and breathing through their noses and I was a total mess trying to hang on. These guys ripped me apart, but I was loving it. At the end of the ride the average speed was 17.2 mph (don't laugh). These days I pull off a moderate recovery ride at that pace, so you can look forward to it only getting better!