My Tour de France

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Re: My Tour de France

Postby ruscook » Tue Mar 31, 2009 5:47 am

Great report TLL, thanks. You did well again (obviously)... Those speeds are huge. What do the Div 2 and 1 guys average at?

If you don't mind me asking, if you're happy for heart rates above 180 odd, how old are you? Being new to riding and in my (very) late 40's I'm wary of anything about 170, particularly for any length of time...

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Re: My Tour de France

Postby snedden9485 » Tue Mar 31, 2009 9:02 am

Great read TLL. As a comparison, how does the grades (eg div 1, 2, 3, 4) compare to our NSW state grading system? Out of interest, what state grade did you race when you were in oz?
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby toolonglegs » Tue Mar 31, 2009 4:44 pm

ruscook wrote:Great report TLL, thanks. You did well again (obviously)... Those speeds are huge. What do the Div 2 and 1 guys average at?

If you don't mind me asking, if you're happy for heart rates above 180 odd, how old are you? Being new to riding and in my (very) late 40's I'm wary of anything about 170, particularly for any length of time...

Russ


Thanks Russ...I am looking forward to Div2....I hope!.On my first race which I had a flat we had actually passed Div2 by the time I pulled out...and on the race in the wind where I was in a 3 man break we had a faster av than B and within 3km average of Div1.Saying that Div1 is mighty impressive to watch and there is still a division above that.But the averages vary alot from course to course especially as it is so windy at the moment.
On the heart rate...for myself I have no problems with a high HR....I train at about 165-180 for 90 minute tempo rides....I expect the reason my HR isn't getting near the maximum is the finishes of the races I have done so far have had too much cat and mouse tactics going on...my HR takes a while to climb and I only really see maximum in a sprint after a good hard 5 minute windup towards the end.I am 39 btw.
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby toolonglegs » Tue Mar 31, 2009 4:53 pm

snedden9485 wrote:Great read TLL. As a comparison, how does the grades (eg div 1, 2, 3, 4) compare to our NSW state grading system? Out of interest, what state grade did you race when you were in oz?


Really depends on where you ride...in Aus the grades from club to club can vary a lot.I hadn't done an open race in OZ since 2000 when I was in B grade open (quite happily but not winning).When I left Oz I was in B grade Vets / C grade open...I hadn't won a vets race for a long while but was usually at the pointy end,I had won a few C's and was riding B most places...but I have been training hard for 9 months now...in Oz I was racing every week but not much in between.So my form is starting to get back to where it was in 2005 before I got very sick...so I would say now I would sit quite happily in A grade Vets / B grade open.... but I wouldn't be winning with out some very good luck....now if I can get back to where I was in 2000! it might be a different story...but I am 12 kilos heavier now which makes a rather large difference even on the flat courses...and nearly 10 years older :roll:
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby toolonglegs » Tue Mar 31, 2009 4:57 pm

Sorry..comparing to France I would say a Div3 in my region = a good Open C grade or Vets B grade...so Division1 is = to an Open A grade...but above that you have Division1 FFC which is very strong.Hence you often see riders in super fast Div1 races breaking away because it is the highest they can go in their federation before going to FFC grading.I think there are higher rated races above them as well but you will start seeing teams and even protour teams turning up to some of those.
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby zozza » Tue Mar 31, 2009 7:48 pm

toolonglegs wrote:So...quickish report :D .Rocked up to a crit in Lyon today.Wasn't feeling great..but wasn't feeling too bad either so I thought I could have a go seeing I had to go to the big city anyway :roll: .Good numbers today....about 60 I think in Div3.The course was fairly flat...well sort of on a slope,but the downhill was into the wind and the long uphill straight had a good tail / side wind so was going to be tough for a break to go.It was very windy again...cool :lol: ...but really I wasn't sure if I had an attack in me.We took off pretty hard and started dropping riders pretty quickly,I sat in the front 1/3 to 1/2 when I could,just staying out of the wind...the course was pretty good but a few bad manhole covers needed remembering and my DuraAce rear needs a true already after two rides!...oh well.The softening up went on for about 15kms and we were averaging about 39kmph which was insane considering the wind...but I suppose as the windiest part was downhill we could keep an OK speed..well finally I found myself in the front few riders and thought why not!...all the earlier attacks had come on the uphill but what was the point as the tailwind was pretty good and the bunch was too quick there...so I went in the windiest part of the course,I knew straight away I didn't have it in me,so after 400 meters I looked behind and realised that apart from 1 rider just latching onto me I had pulled out 100 meters...so I put my head down for a sec then let the other guy roll thru...but he was strong,well maybe I would have been strong enough to go with him if I hadn't raced yesterday but on the uphill I let him go,I don't think I could have done a lot with him...although I was regretting it 10 minutes later when he was still away...so I drifted back to the pack thinking it can't last but of course it did...we never really chased,no one wanted to work and after a few half arsed attemps in the next 20km's we gave up and suddenly the time calls blew out from 40secs to over 2.5minutes....he must of nearly bloody lapped us,to tell the truth I didn't mind too much as I needed to back off for a while and recover...but still for 40 or so riders left it was a pretty piss poor attempt....oh well...time for some sprint practice after my dismal race end yesterday.So at about the 62km mark with a couple more laps to go the compulsory attacks went but no one was giving an inch...I worked my way up into the top 10 for the bell and defended my place pretty aggressively....the straight was pretty long and even thou slightly up hill it was going to be a pretty clean sprint...well I hoped so.I was riding about half a bike behind and to the right of the guy in front of me in about 5th wheel...patience...one guy had attacked but there was still a reasonable amount of side wind that made doing it on your own hard...so even thou I had clear air in front of me I was still staying close to the guy next to me...then the guy behind him tried to push his way out...sorry I don't think so,I am not going to open the door for you...your trapped and it is your own doing....I think we touched shoulders but I am pretty hard to budge being a heavy bugger!....and then every one opened up and I let the 55/12 wind up....pretty long sprint but I got it by a good amount.2nd place...grrrrr...getting sick of 2nds,but the guy who stayed away certainly deserved it.
Next race will be tough and the 55 will go back in the box! :D .
68km / 37.4av and still haven't had a max heart rate over about 180-184 in a race...sprint speed was 62kmph.


Congrats TLL, almost like winning, but for the breakaway. Like you say, sounds like the guy bust a nut and deserved it. :)
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby ruscook » Tue Mar 31, 2009 7:54 pm

toolonglegs wrote:Thanks Russ...I am looking forward to Div2....I hope!.On my first race which I had a flat we had actually passed Div2 by the time I pulled out...and on the race in the wind where I was in a 3 man break we had a faster av than B and within 3km average of Div1.Saying that Div1 is mighty impressive to watch and there is still a division above that.But the averages vary alot from course to course especially as it is so windy at the moment.
On the heart rate...for myself I have no problems with a high HR....I train at about 165-180 for 90 minute tempo rides....I expect the reason my HR isn't getting near the maximum is the finishes of the races I have done so far have had too much cat and mouse tactics going on...my HR takes a while to climb and I only really see maximum in a sprint after a good hard 5 minute windup towards the end.I am 39 btw.

Thanks for that info. Well I've got about 8-9yrs on you and haven't had any kind of fitness till this year so my body's not used to it, and I'm careful to not over do it (too much)... Love hearing about the tactics, just can't imagine doing 35-50kmh and still having energy and attention span available for it though :lol:

Good luck with Div 2, and for the details in your response in comparing the levels of racing. All info helps build the picture.

Russ (on withdrawal symptoms because of the bloody rain! :cry: )
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby toolonglegs » Tue Mar 31, 2009 8:15 pm

Thanks Zozza...yeah it will come soon I hope..wifey has given me the word about these 2 race weekends so I will be just playing in my region for a while!.
Russ...I wouldn't worry too much about HR..it doesn't mean that much really...if I had a power meter I would probably dump it and I tape it up half the time in races because it puts me off.Apart from the race I was in a break in a couple of weekends ago my heart rate average is usually a lot lower than what I train at...train harder that you race!.
Plus I have been racing for 15 years or so,it seriously takes a couple of years to get your legs up to speed.
Rain is for riding in....I like the miserable weeks because they are the weeks I know I am one of the very few out training :D .
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby toolonglegs » Fri Apr 03, 2009 3:12 am

This weeks has been a shocker...eating and sleeping!!! and not much else,no worthwhile rides as I have accumulated too much fatigue.Maybe the length of the races is the reason...in Sydney I had no problem backing up 2 races on a weekend...but they where rarely over an hour - hour and a half.I have till Sunday to recover but am stuck trying to decide whether to do a race or a cyclosportive...the cyclosportive starts just 15kms from here and is 135km with 2000m climbing....and it seems like there will be only half the amount of people racing this weekend because they will all be at the sportive!!!....what to do?
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby Mattsbike » Fri Apr 03, 2009 7:06 am

toolonglegs wrote:... trying to decide whether to do a race or a cyclosportive...the cyclosportive starts just 15kms from here and is 135km with 2000m climbing....and it seems like there will be only half the amount of people racing this weekend because they will all be at the sportive!!!....what to do?


Wow, you're definitely spoilt for choice mate!
Whatever you may decide, I'm looking forward to reading your report next week. Good luck.

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Re: My Tour de France

Postby toolonglegs » Sat Apr 04, 2009 8:53 pm

"La Bisou" it is...or translated "the kiss"...135km with 1950m climbing...just a little cyclosportive for the start of the season...but very well run and on closed roads as well.It always amazes me how they shut down roads for cycling events here!!!...nice :D .I think about 800 people compete...looking forward to it.I should be racing but never done a sportive before so why not...don't think there will be many racing anyway....time to drag my lard arse up some climbs...I am aiming to really hurt on this one :D
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby toolonglegs » Mon Apr 06, 2009 4:10 am

Ok..no race report this weekend...but plenty of (good) pain.Rocked up to my 1st Cyclosportive French Style today...pretty small one with about 1000 entries I think they said.Have been very tired this week and eating like a horse..scales hit the 100kg mark again this week :cry: ...and the last two nights have been very broken with kids being a wee bit restless...so not an ideal lead up.
Anyway signed on and got set up...3 soup thick cofees and asthma meds,I have been feeling the asthma a bit lately,a lot of spring pollen probably.Rolled out with some of the crew for a few k's then headed to the start line...everyone was asking me if I was cold!...HTFU frogs!...that and I only have one top in my club colors and it is too small and short sleeved :D ...was about 7 degrees so just perfect for a heat hater like me!.I was only about 50 meters from the start line but there must have been a lot of people in front of it as well as once we rolled off there seemed to be about 200 or so in front of me..grrr...OK I wasn't planning on winning today so just enjoy...hahahahaha!.The pace from the gun was FAST and dangerous...we had the whole road to ourselves for the first 20-30km and we where flying...but 1000 riders going flat out can get a bit scary in the bottle necks...saw a few go down and plenty of lock ups...but then it opened up a bit and away we went....seemed like a long time till we hit the first proper climb.At that point we had been averaging about 42kmph...of course once my lard arse hit the first climb today that would go to pot...but the aim today was a good hard 4 or so hours.The course was 135km with 1950 meters of climbing so was going to hurt.I kept the leaders in sight till about half way up the 1st real climb but that was the last I saw of them...the climbs wern't long 3-7km but there was a lot of them.I ended up in a bunch of about 60,I think the 2nd bunch on the road...and we flew....but in the end the hills got me!....the group was shrinking but I was having to chase very hard after getting dropped on the climbs...at about the 80km mark they were gone and I was on my own riding hard for 10km...finally caught up with about 3 others and we rolled along at a good pace...but about the 100km mark the stragglers behind us had merged into a fast rolling group and as the course was flattening out they caught us with about 25km to go...which was fine by me...I was in a bit of pain...I needed a pee!!! but there was no way I was going to let this bunch go...actually I needed a pee from about the 1 hour mark but was trying to blank it out.Also my lower back was having a hard time and about the 100k mark my left knee was feeling it and I was worried about a blow out later in the day...but in the end the old soon to be 40 body held together and rolled in with bunch in 4 hours 8 minutes..apparently you only sprint in cyclosportives for the win and some guy at the front of our bunch was been given the honor..for what I don't know :roll: ...so was a bit of an anti climax at the end...I packed up pretty quickly afterwards as I was really feeling stiff...cream on my back and a hot bath (I know it should of been a cold one!) when I got home...but apart from being a bit slow this arvy I feel fine now...phew.Was pretty happy with how I went but also realise the Etape in July will be hard...in the state I finished today,it will be about the same distance (not sure on the amount of climbing thou) that I will be hitting the bottom of Ventoux with 20+ kms of hard climbing to go!!!.
So check list is bit of core strength work to help the lower back.
Lose 10 kilos which will make everything easier and take some strain of my knees (being a grinder) and my back.
I rode with 39/53 -12/27 today which was perfect but will definately do the Etape with 50/34-36 and either 11/25 or 12/27.
Didn't need to stop for fuel today...started the day with pasta at 6.30 am...lots of coffee and a couple of nut bars till about 8.30am and a least 750mls of energy drink.Lasted the ride with two bottles and 3 gels...didn't feel low on food or drink so that is a good sign...full steam ahead :D .
Back to normal programing next week..certainly made the right choice in skipping the race today.
135km / 1950m climbing / 4h 8m / 32.7 average
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby snedden9485 » Mon Apr 06, 2009 8:08 am

Another quality report TLL.
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby muggah » Mon Apr 06, 2009 10:10 am

Great report, sounds like it was (painful :P) fun! Does the 'winner' of a sportive get anything or is it all for glory? How do you manage that kind of distance on only 2 bottles?! I'd need at least 4 if I didn't want to pull up, a delerious, dehydrated mess after that kind of distance - mind you that's in a lot warmer that 7deg so that could be a factor?
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby snedden9485 » Mon Apr 06, 2009 10:15 am

Yeah id imagine water consumption would be alot lower than the bahmy gold coast :P Iv noticed now that it has cooled down here, i hardly have any water. I still carry my two bottles, but i dont have near as much as i did in summer time.
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby Chuck » Mon Apr 06, 2009 10:29 am

toolonglegs wrote:135km / 1950m climbing / 4h 8m / 32.7 average


Super average.

What grade were you racing here in Oz ?
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby JV911 » Mon Apr 06, 2009 10:48 am

toolonglegs wrote:135km / 1950m climbing / 4h 8m / 32.7 average


:shock:

well done!
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby ruscook » Mon Apr 06, 2009 10:51 am

Thanks TLL, another great ride report.. I don't know how you do those av KM/H with climbs!!! I barely scraped the 100km (metric-century) yesterday at 27.5 and I'm down to 89kg. My legs felt it for the rest of the day! Well done
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby twizzle » Mon Apr 06, 2009 11:04 am

toolonglegs wrote:Lose 10 kilos which will make everything easier and take some strain of my knees (being a grinder) and my back.


You and me both. :) Down to 100.8kg on Friday... I'm still chasing. :twisted:
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby MichaelB » Mon Apr 06, 2009 1:49 pm

JV911 wrote:
toolonglegs wrote:135km / 1950m climbing / 4h 8m / 32.7 average


:shock:

well done!


Hear hear !!! I'd love to do that on a flat ride ....... for a qtr of that distance.

Where are the pics though ?

Maybe a helmet cam video of your races ?
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby mikesbytes » Mon Apr 06, 2009 2:16 pm

Your a tough man TTL, I would of stopped for the slash.

Funny how these "rides" turn into pseudo races. Just like some Sunday training rides :D
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby toolonglegs » Mon Apr 06, 2009 3:40 pm

Oh it didn't turn into a race..I knew it was going to be a race from the beginning :D .The winner is just for the glory...I am sure the trophy is pretty impressive thou and there seemed to be some good prizes...I was probably up for one for the most foreign entry!...but I had to get home and I was not feeling the best.Still have a sore back and bladder :lol: .The winner did it in 3hours40 and averaged just over 3kmph faster than me.
I got a stitch again when I was chasing hard on my own....normal story-if I had known a big bunch was forming somewhere behind me then I would have had plenty of time for a toilet break...but then I would of been bludging as well...can't have that :wink: ...so probably backed off a touch on the drink at about the 80 to 100km points but over all felt I was drinking well.I had a lot of fluid before the race started so that would have kept me going for a while (and made me want to pee!)...then I did grab two drinks out of feeders hands at the feed points...but the first one had a menthol syrup in it and was horrible so I hardly had a mouth full...the 2nd bottle was plain water but still a mouthful was all I had time for...but my 2nd bottle still had a least half in it.Yes 7 degree start and max of 18 degrees keeps water consumption down a bit....I am not looking forward to Ventoux if it is over 30!.
The cyclo sportive scene hear is very big...and very competitive,a lot of people don't race and just concentrate on these and there is a national series of 10-12 races which is very hard fought for in all the age catergories.I estimate I finished about the 200th mark so there where was a lot of good riders in front of me...my problem will always be power to weight...I can make the power but at 4 to 4.4w per kilo I am never going to smash the hills...I am a flat land or very close to flat racer...full stop!!!.

PS,no pics...I was tempted to take my camera but in the end felt I better not...definately will take it in July...I will be lucky to be in the top 2000-3000 there so might as well be a tourist.

PPS...I say this but I have a mate coming over from Sydney who is a very strong A grader from Turramurra and even thou I know he will smash me there is always the chance :wink: ...I beat a lot of good Div1 riders yesterday so think my Div3 grading will be upgraded sooner than later!.
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby zozza » Mon Apr 06, 2009 5:09 pm

Good going TTL, I feel I need to HTFU just to read the stats :oops:

And then do 100k while needing a leak is amazing, I would have also stopped :)
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby toolonglegs » Mon Apr 06, 2009 5:18 pm

Oh I should of stopped! :lol: but you know what it's like...hard to say goodbye to a bunch not knowing how far back the next one is!.I am feeling it a fair bit in lower back and a bit in my knee today...apart from that I feel great :roll:
Makes me nervous for the Etape... 172 km / 3600m climbing....I have a looooooong way to go!....hotter and much faster :oops:
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Re: My Tour de France

Postby Mattsbike » Tue Apr 07, 2009 5:49 am

Another fantastic race report, as usual TLL. Your tales are making me seriously consider an extended holiday - of the french kind!
Great work mate; keep it up.

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