Boom! It’s [think of a number] days until the 2023 running of the RideLondon 100 kicks off (pedals off) from (presumably) the Embankment.
Are you excited? You should be*.
(* Unless you’re not doing it, in which case, “meh”.)
In this post I’m going to
rehash share some of the stuff I’ve produced over the last 10 years (good grief) relating to RideLondon. The aim is to inspire, inform and excite you, as well as reassuring anyone that’s having a last minute attack of nerves (headline message: DON’T PANIC, it’s going to be great).
11 Reasons Why You’re Going To Have A Great Time Riding RideLondon
A few years back, in a fit of post-event excitement, I penned a list of reasons to sign up for the following year’s RideLondon. Good news: all of the reasons still hold true.
Here’s a quick reminder of what you can look forward to:
- Riding on closed roads in London is fugging amaze-balls.
- It’s fast – you’ll be surprised how fast you ride (but don’t go out too hard)
- Non-chiselled whippets are perfectly capable of finishing and posting a good time
- It’s well organised
- Spectator support in a sportive (virtually unheard of elsewhere…)
- It’s perfect for popping your imperial century cherry (‘imperial century’ being the term for a 100 mile bike ride)
- The collective experience of riding with 1,000s of other riders
- It’s a very friendly event (there are remarkably few extrémités cloches)
- The sense of a RideLondon community
- It’s not just a sportive; there is a whole festival of cycling spread across the weekend
- You’re helping to promote cycling in the UK (very good of you)
Everything You Could Possibly Want To Know About the RideLondon Route
Here is my video on the 2022 RideLondon event, which includes details on the routes and the climbs (here is the link if you want to read the article version).
Training For RideLondon
Here are some of my posts on training:
- My first Zwift training plan (including results)
- Fitness training for road cyclists
- If you’re above ‘a certain age’: Fast After 50 book review
Also, a bonus, you should definitely get a bike fit.
RideLondon Pre-Event Preparations
(To be read in the few weeks before the event itself).
There is no phrase more likely to strike fear in to the heart of the amateur endurance athlete (for yes, you are they) than, ‘You should now be coming to the end of your training programme’.
You should now be coming towards the end of your training programme. Or at least you should be into the final 10 or so days of real effort, after which you’ll be tapering.
Don’t skimp on the taper. The temptation, particularly if you’re worried that you’ve not done enough training, is to ride hard right up until the eve of the event. This is self-defeating. Any fitness gains you make in the final week will be offset on the day by fatigue from not being fully rested. At least give yourself 5-7 days of rest and very short, mostly light sessions.
Pure fitness is not the only ingredient you’ll need for a successful ride. Being organised in terms of your food and drink, and the other items you’ll need to carry on the day, will have an impact on your enjoyment of the day and the time you post:
I went a little overboard in my pre-event analysis of what I would need to eat, writing a detailed ‘nutrition plan’. You certainly don’t need to do this – the bananas, energy drinks and other snacks available at the feed stations, along with a couple of gels and some Jelly Babies in your jersey pocket will be enough to get you round. My full ‘overboard post’ on RideLondon nutrition is available here.
Finally, you’ll want to spend a few minutes perusing my thoughts on the ‘optimal’ way to spend the night before RideLondon… (don’t sue me).
If you’re participating in RideLondon, I wish you the very best of luck. You’ll have an awesome day.
Courage, mes braves!