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Colorado training/racing?(8 posts)

Colorado training/racing?LD
Aug 22, 2001 2:28 PM
My wife and I are new to road biking. We want to race next season, but don't really know where to start. Problematically, we live in Summit county and only have until mid-October at the latest to ride outside. We plan on buying rollers and some race videos to (hopefully) get in shape this winter.

Any advice on how to race next year? When does the front-range season start? Are there organized groups/rides during the winter/early spring?

Any help is appreciated.

re: Colorado training/racing?pmannion
Aug 23, 2001 5:17 AM
First, you can ride outside (probably)...You just need to learn about appropriate winter duds. Winter cycling gloves, a good balaclava for the face/head, thermal tights, thermal jacket. Trust me, I moved from sunny SoCal to New Jersey and had to make some BIG adjustments. I barely think about riding in the cold now. Its ok (although I much prefer summer).

If you need to do lots of indoor training, I might suggest a fluid resistance trainer (such as cycleops) instead of rollers, as rollers sort of prevent you from doing maximal/near max efforts due to the concentration needed to stay upright. The Spinervals videos look interesting ( I hear good things about them.
First of all..PaulCL
Aug 23, 2001 5:24 AM
..I'm jealous. I just spent a week in Summit county riding your mountains. The best vacation I ever had. I've never hurt so much going up those mountains, but it was good pain.

I own several of the Spinerval video's mentioned in the previous post. I don't know about you, but I have a difficult time staying motivated on the rollers while watching reruns of Gilligan's Island. The Spinervals will keep you motivated with a changing workout and specific goals for each tape. Try one...then you may buy a few more. Paul
American Cycling AssociationBipedZed
Aug 23, 2001 5:46 AM
Almost all racing on the Front Range is through the ACA. Racing starts in April and goes through August. If you plan on racing seriously then you both should get an annual license ($25), otherwise you can get a one-day license for $2 at the race.

Most races are in the Front Range Denver/Boulder area. They tend to start early, particularly Cat 4 and Citizens. There are many clubs/teams in the area, but joining them is somewhat of a black art. You basically need to start racing unattached and make connections with team racers during the races and they basically vouch for you. There are many informal race-oriented group rides in Boulder and Denver during the winter, but these aren't friendly rides and dropped riders are on their own.

You will need to put in a lot of miles on the trainer/rollers over the winter since you won't be able to ride outside in Summit County. Colorado is one of the most competitive regions in the nation and the level of competition at even Cat 4 is pretty intense.

Good luck!
Try X-C skiing during the winterJ.S.
Aug 23, 2001 12:11 PM
I have friends in cold climates who use this to get into early season fitness until they can get on the bike. You can easily rent the equipment to start out, and it sure beats sitting inside all winter on rollers.
the winter guide to riding in COGutterball
Aug 23, 2001 12:26 PM
Of course you want to get as many mile in before the winter...rollers are a good idea, but you won't get any substantial gains on rollers. My training philosophy is anything is better than nothing (in the winter), especially if it doesn't involve the bike...luckily your gonna be living in a winter play ground...cross counrty skiing and snowshoeing top the list of good things to do. Don't kill yourself inside on rollers while all the other kids are outside playing. Get some long mile in Febuary, March and April. Most races start towards the end of April.
Here is the ACA webpage it is a good resource for Front Range races and Team/Activities.
See you at the races.
Aug 23, 2001 1:21 PM
Thanks for all of the responses.

We do x-c ski as much as possible in the winter (mostly back-country, but looking to get skate skis this season), but only on weekends. Weekends are also pretty busy this season, as we are getting active in the masters ussa series around here. So, I figured that an hour or two on rollers after work (gets dark around 5:00) couldn't hurt.

Are rollers worth the money? I can't think of any other way to get a ride in in the winter months without driving to the front range.

Thanks for all of the info on front range racing and the ACA; I think we'll be joining for next summer; see you guys at the starts!
re: Colorado training/racing?Lazy
Aug 23, 2001 9:33 PM
Look on the ACA website. There's a club directory there. I think there's a team or two in Summit county. Call 'em up. They'll be more than happy to discuss your situation with you I'm sure. It'll give you an avenue to meat some other neighborhood cyclists if nothing else.