The cycling equivalent of a marathon?

boydj

Guru
Location
Paisley
When I was young and fit I played football and was told I had a 'good engine'. I started running at lunchtimes in my early 30's to keep fit and there was a good club at work. This led to racing with the club on road and cross-country, which eventually led to finishing 5 marathons, 2 of them in under 2h 50m. The year I turned 40 I started triathlon training and competed in a few - the longest being a bit longer then half-ironman. At that point my swimming was just about adequate and I'd very little cycling experience, but my general level of fitness saw me through. The year I turned 40, with a few months of triathlon training, I ran pb's in several races. Then I burst a hamstring playing 5's and my running went from 6-minute miles to 8-minute miles. I didn't cycle at all after that for a long time, but I kept up the running (more like jogging).

Years later, after redundancy, I got a job about 9 miles from home and started cycling to work. Cycling fitness improved rapidly and I loved it to the point of joining a club. Now, several years into retirement, I still love my cycling - though golf is my main sport - and I'm still doing a couple of thousand miles a year (none of these cissy kilometres for me).

It doesn't really matter what level of fitness you are at, there's no doubt in my mind that cycling is much easier on the body. Cycling and running are both hard on the inexperienced, but with cycling you can take it easy in a way that you just can't when you are running. After running a marathon, I'd be hobbling for a few days - even after weeks of 60 - 70 miles a week in training. After a triathlon or a big cycling event, I could be out training the next day, albeit in recovery mode.
 
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lazybloke

Let's go sledding
Location
In a cemetery
Good work @Racing roadkill !
My first sportive was very well-catered with a generous hot meal at the halfway point plus 2 other snack breaks.

This was clearly habit-forming, as when i did the london surrey 100 i stopped quite a few times, for: water, ice cream, breakfast, sunday roast leftovers and biscuits, a sarnie, bananas and cake!
(Plus donuts and flapjack afterwards at the charity tent afterwards)
If i ever do a LEJOG i'll probably put on a fair few pounds.
 

united4ever

Über Member
there was some documentary a few years ago about some Aussie guy doing Arch to Arc....(marble arch to Arc we triumph triathlon) running from marble arch to the channel the first day, sleep and then swim the channel, sleep and then cycle to Paris. Seemed like the cycle was just a breeze even though it was the last bit. The swimming looked horrific. That sums it up for me... cycling seems so much easier than running or swimming even if you quadruple the distance.
 

Tenkaykev

Über Member
Location
Poole
London -Brighton? Not a clue. It was about 20 years ago.

My job was to hang around in Coulsdon or somewhere like that in a hi viz jacket doing precisely nothing until the field had all passed.
About 55 miles, the route changed a bit over the years. 7am start on Tower Bridge then out through the suburbs.
Sincere thanks to you and all the other marshals.
IMG_20200214_084214.jpg


London -Brighton? Not a clue. It was about 20 years ago.

My job was to hang around in Coulsdon or somewhere like that in a hi viz jacket doing precisely nothing until the field had all passed.
 

Dogtrousers

Kilometre nibbler
Turning the question on its head, what emblematic term from cycling would you use in the same way as the term "marathon" is used?

So if a century is the marathon of cycling, is a marathon the Alpe d'Huez (or whatever) of running?
 

Tenkaykev

Über Member
Location
Poole
Turning the question on its head, what emblematic term from cycling would you use in the same way as the term "marathon" is used?

So if a century is the marathon of cycling, is a marathon the Alpe d'Huez (or whatever) of running?
I'd vote for the Comrades Marathon. It will be the 100th running of the event next year.
A wonderful history, quite challenging ( if you do the " up " then the first 26 miles are uphill, then it gets a bit undulating, 😉
If you do the " down" then the last 26 miles beats the crap out of your knees)
 

Smokin Joe

Legendary Member
On the very few sportives I’ve ever bothered with ( the first Velo Birmingham Midlands, and the PRLS 100 a few times) I’ve stopped at a Pret A Manger, and a pub. I do / did get some odd looks from people watching over the barriers, as I stopped, lock my bike to the bike racks outside and went in for a bite to eat and a drink / pint. I was told I “wasn’t taking it seriously” when I finished. You don’t say:laugh:
You've met some of the dozy prats who actually believe a sportive is a race, bless 'em.
 

Tenkaykev

Über Member
Location
Poole
No the laps!
My first event was 1/4 mile laps of cinder track, thereafter the track events were 400 metres "tartan" track.
Road events tended to vary in lap length, there was a 24hr round Chorley rec, and an indoor 24hr held indoors in Milton Keynes shopping centre ( running on marble isn't very kind to your joints) DAMHIKT
 

mjr

Comfy armchair to one person & a plank to the next
You've met some of the dozy prats who actually believe a sportive is a race, bless 'em.
Daniel Friebe asked Richard Moore if he was going to win the RideLondon 100 on The Cycling Podcast this week. Should we :laugh: or :rolleyes: at a journalist pretending it's a race?

an indoor 24hr held indoors in Milton Keynes shopping centre ( running on marble isn't very kind to your joints) DAMHIKT
The roller-skate race in Milton Keynes shopping centre, in the dead-end by the John Lewis mural, was unkind to our ears:

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V57eqtN2K7E
 
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