Wednesday, 3 July 2013

#10in10 Route Planning...

Jon plotting the route for the next stage...
Right from the early planning stages of the 10in10 it was obvious that we would not be able to plan an exact route until we were out on the ride.... 
We had obtained a rough overview of a route that had been followed by a small group a few years ago....they had completed a similar ride but had started in Italy and had cycled back to the UK..... 

We felt that it would be a much more dramatic and exciting ride if we started in the UK and finished in the beauty of the mountains.... This meant that  generally each subsequent stage would be harder than the one preceding it.... with some minor exceptions this proved to be the case but I think it was worth it. 

This was the first ride for many years where I was not totally responsible for the daily route planning.... 
As the idea for the ride had originally come from Jon Joynes I had suggested to him that he do the daily planning and just run his ideas past me...I would then make some suggestions based on previous experience..... 

As it turned out Jon did a first class job at the route planning and he managed to create a really good direct route, managing to balance ascent and mileage so as to make the route both enjoyable and challenging at the same time...
An indication of this was our mileage. 

Prior to the ride we had calculated that it could be anything around the 850 mile mark give or take 100 miles either side. As it transpired, with Jon's route planning we managed to complete the entire ride in just over 700 miles which was far better than I would ever have hoped for....

Mind you distance alone means nothing really...it also depends on the road conditions...weather....ascent and descent etc. 

As I said Jon managed to carve a route that took all these things into consideration and his work on this played a major part in the success we enjoyed.....

Some people would say that as each stage unfolds you become stronger and over a ride of two to three days or if you are touring I would agree....however with a ride like the 10in10 you are faced with quite a high level of intensity in order to complete it in the ten day time scale...a race against the clock......
 It can almost be compared to riding ten sportives in ever increasing difficult terrain back to back....
Each day we were very aware that if we had a major mechanical....a hiccup in following our route....or if we were off the daily pace required, there was not much of a margin for error.....

This all means that you are burning a lot of calories daily and if you are not very careful you can find yourself actually feeling weaker just as the route heads upwards into the hills and mountains. This is due to being unable to replace the energy used at the same rate that you are burning it....

As I mentioned in the previous post, we were very lucky having Lorenzo producing some great meals to help fuel us on the ride but even that that was not enough for some of the team as I will cover in the next blog post when I look at our training and nutrition/fuelling.......

1 comment:

Brenda Cupryna said...

I found this very interesting as we usually just have a rough idea and go with the flow. Mind yu, we dontput in the mileage you did on a daiky basis. Great stuff