How hard is the Tour?

benb

Evidence based cyclist
Location
Epsom
I think that the TdF is probably the most challenging sporting event, bar none. I can't think of any other competition, in any sporting discipline, that comes close.

You do hear of people running a marathon every day for a week or something, but that's not an official sporting event.
 

Rob3rt

Man or Moose!
Location
Manchester
Well........... its hard to say really, how do ever you quantify or pin this down? Distances covered? Number of consecutive days competed over? Accumulated hours racing? Accumulated hours competing vs. the total elapsed time? What do you mean by challenging, mental? Physical?
 

Andrius.B

Active Member
Location
Bristol
maybe we could use something like this formula to find the hardest sport physically:
((total power output) / (time including breaks and rest))

edit: maybe not... there are just too many variables
 
OP
benb

benb

Evidence based cyclist
Location
Epsom
I just can't think of another sporting event that has the same kind of sustained output over a similar time-frame.
 

PaulB

Legendary Member
Location
Colne
The Bob Graham round? A triathlon? The Welsh 1,000 metres? Okay, they're not sustained over anything like the time frame of the Tour but I would estimate all of those events would be harder than even the toughest TdF stage taken in isolation. And cycling is a lot kinder to the body than anything involving feet/ground interface.
 

VamP

Banned
Location
Cambs
There are plenty of events with more sustained effort and much less rest (if any), though not with the same total time span - the question is which is harder on the body - three weeks on a bike with support teams, massages, sleeps in a comfy bed - or 3 to 10 day sustained efforts carrying own supplies, no or little sleep snatched along the way and often in extreme conditions.

The Iditarod across Alaska, Marathon des Sables across the Sahara, Jungle Marathon across Amazon Forest or even the Brutal double Ironman in Snowdonia are all pretty extreme.

And then there's the Giro ;)
 

mangid

Guru
Location
Cambridge
Round the world Cycle Race ?

Mike Hall's effort, 200 miles a day for 92 days ...

--
Dan
 

TheDoctor

Europe Endless
Moderator
Location
Stevenage
If so, it's by an incredibly small amount. I'd put the RAAM as harder.
It's further and you have much less time. It's certainly more likely to mess you up, IMHO.
An absolute maximum of 4 hours sleep a night for 12 days or you won't make the time cut?
Ride for 42 hours and than have 25 minutes kip?
Start hallucinating that your support crew has been replaced by alien replicants?
It's only for the seriously bonkers.

We should enter a CC team.
 

VamP

Banned
Location
Cambs
I've looked it up. This years TdF was 2,173 miles in total. The Giro d Italia was 3 miles longer. Does that make it harder?

The last couple of years the Giro has had a tougher profile than the Tour, as has been widely discussed. It's not a given, and my throwaway comment was tongue in cheek...
 
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