Is the Elephant Rock Bike Ride a good prep ride?
2014 was my first Elephant Rock Bike Ride and I absolutely loved the ride. It had mild elevation, great temperatures, and was a perfect kick off to my riding season.
However, 2015 was a whole different story!
Last year I had about a month to prep for the ride, which was awesome considering I hadn’t been on a bike in 20 or more years. I rode about 60-75 miles a week to prep for the ride, which is one of the reasons I had such great success.
The spring of 2015 has been much different. We have had soo much rain and precipitation that getting in my training rides has been difficult. For me the best time to ride was in the afternoon. And if you know Colorado well, you are very familiar with our early afternoon thunderstorms, hail, and sometimes tornadoes!
To say the least, this year has not been perfect for training. And when that happens, I take my training indoors and modify my workouts. And as much as that works great for the heart rate and endurance, saddle time is sometimes the best prep for any distance ride.
Elephant Rock Bike Ride Training
Due to the in-climate weather this year I completed two rides about a week prior to the Elephant Rock Bike Ride. My first ride was 17 miles and the second was only 12. So the total mileage of my prep was actually less than the 40 mile Elephant Rock Bike Ride.
Considering I am in good shape, my training fell a little short of my goals! Did I feel the effect?
Absolutely! But there is actually more to the story…
First… the day before the ride, my wife and I did the Jodi’s Race 5k to support Ovarian Cancer awareness. It was a great day to get out and support those in need. It just happened to be the day before my ride, not my plan.
Second…I managed to fall off my bike the evening before the ride and add some pain to my pleasure. Yes, I fell off my bike and added a giant gash and bruise to my leg. The weird part was it was during my bike prep of 10 minutes and not on the 40 mile bike ride.
So before I had even started the Elephant Rock Bike Ride I had:
- Completed a 5k
- Bruised and gashed my quad…Good Times!
The Elephant Rock Bike Ride
I would have to say that this ride IS a great ride to prep for the rest of the season! I spoke with many riders that participate in the Tour of the Moon and other vertical rides. They all seem to love the Elephant Rock because it is early and they can get in some good saddle time for the other rides.
Since my training was limited this year, I would agree with the other riders. I did well on this ride, but not as well as I had hoped. It was mostly up hill, and my time was a bit slower than I expected. I will say that I am by no means a pro or distance rider. I simply participate to see the great Colorado views, and keep in shape.
The main issue for me this year was cramps! Something that I really have never experienced on any ride or athletic event.
After about 30 miles in, my quads started cramping. So much so that when I made it to the final rest stop, my left leg cramped so bad I couldn’t get it to quit!
I ended up limping over to the Gatorade station to get some salt/electrolytes to ease the cramps.
And that was a temporary fix. I continued to have problems the rest of the ride, but overall I finished! Just a little beat up.
But that is okay! It gave me motivation. Sometimes when you are knocked down you need to get right back up.
Feeling like I needed a little redemption, I signed up for the Colorado Bike MS 150!
Although it is only three weeks away, I will be ready and hopefully I wont have a giant gash or cramps for that endeavor!
So now its on! Off to train for the the MS 150 Bike Ride! I will say that the Elephant Rock Bike Ride has been a great prep ride, and look forward to greater success on the MS 150.
Click Here To learn more about the MS 150 Bike ride and how you can join the effort to support or join my team!