I've been thinking, for a while, about getting into randonneuring. There's something about a sport based on cheerfully enjoying long miles of camaraderie, beautiful scenery, and physical punishment that appeals both to my inner bike freak and my inner masochist.
In that vein, I'm hoping to ride my first ACP brevet under the auspices of the Louisville Bicycle Club on June 26th of this year.
While my usual mode of preparation for any kind of event is simply to throw myself into the deep end and then berate myself for being fat, incompetent, out of shape, stupid, and otherwise unworthy, I've decided that millions of other cyclists can't possibly all be wrong. As such, I've decided to actually, you know ... train.
The kind denizens of the Long Distance Cycling board at Bikeforums.net have handed me a number of good pointers. Among them, adding 10% to total mileage and to my longest ride each week (and not forgetting to eat). That sounds like a very concrete, attainable goal.
If I take the final week before the brevet as a rest/recovery week, I have fifteen weeks to work, which makes for a very reasonable training schedule of 16 weeks (counting last week's 70 miles). In that vein, here's the basic plan:
Week 1 (02/28 - 03/06)
70 miles - Long Ride: 30 miles
Week 2 (03/07 - 03/13)
77 miles - Long Ride: 33 miles
Week 3 (03/14 - 03/20)
85 miles - Long Ride: 37 miles
Week 4 (03/21 - 03/27)
94 miles - Long Ride: 41 miles
Week 5 (03/28 - 04/03
104 miles - Long Ride: 45 miles
Week 6 (04/04 - 04/10)
115 miles - Long Ride: 50 miles
Week 7 (04/11 - 04/17)
127 miles - Long Ride: 55 miles
Week 8 (04/18 - 04/24)
140 miles - Long Ride: 61 miles (Woohoo! Almost halfway there!)
Week 9 (04/25 - 05/01)
154 miles - Long Ride: 67 miles
Week 10 (05/02 - 05/08)
170 miles - Long Ride: 74 miles
Week 11 (05/09 - 05/15)
187 miles - Long Ride: 82 miles
Week 12 (05/16 - 05/22)
206 miles - Long Ride: 90 miles
Week 13 (05/16 - 05/22)
226 miles - Long Ride: 99 miles
Week 13 (05/23 - 05/29)
249 miles - Long Ride: 109 miles
Week 14 (05/30 - 06/05)
274 miles - Long Ride: 120 miles (almost there!)
Week 15 (06/06 - 06/12)
302 miles - Long Ride: 132 miles (distance achieved!)
Week 16 (06/13 - 06/19)
333 miles - Long Ride: 145 miles
Week 17 will, as aforementioned, be an R&R week — not that I'm going to avoid riding; I just plan to take it easy.
This plan isn't set in stone. If I'm feeling it this weekend, for example, I might ride more than 33 miles (if I do the Saturday morning ride with LBC, I'll probably wind up doing 50 -- 25 there; 25 back).
I'm guessing I will probably want to find some people to ride with by the time I'm riding centuries and change — I do enjoy the solitude of a long solo ride, don't get me wrong, but 100 plus solo miles on a bike every weekend might be a little much even for me. Besides which I am utterly unaccustomed to riding in groups, and half the reason I want to get into randonneuring in the first place is to hang with other people who suffer from the same sublimated masochism and unhealthy obsession with bicycles that drives me :)
Oh, one more bit: I'm sitting at 46.9 miles for this week — excellent progress towards my goal.