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Training for a Long Distance Ride

Get Training Tips from Empire State Ride Veterans!

Whether you’re a newbie to bicycling or a seasoned pro, you can complete the Empire State Ride — and have fun doing it!
Just take it from five Empire State Ride veterans, who signed up for the Empire State Ride with varying levels of cycling experience. We asked them to share with us their training advice for new riders who may be new to bicycling or nervous about mileage. Here’s what they had to say:
“You will be amazed how quickly your body can adapt once you start training. Your back side is going to hurt and your head will feel really heavy during your first few long rides. In a matter of no time you will feel amazing, accomplished, and stronger than ever. You will be looking forward to the next ride with your Empire State Ride family!”
“For me wasn’t the physical challenge — but the mental one. So one day I rode from Buffalo to Rochester alone. I posted the trip on Facebook so everyone knew I was safe and had fun. Once I arrived, 76 miles later, it was then that I knew I could finish the Empire State Ride.”
“Start training early. But don’t think, ‘Oh gosh, 540 miles and those hills?!’ Take it easy and slow. The Empire State Ride is not a race. If you treat it as such, you will burn out very quickly.”
“Listen to your body. If you’re tired, slow down or take a break.”
“Personally, I have an active imagination so I like to talk aloud (often to myself) when I ride. I pretend I’m on television and all my fans are watching and cheering for me. Talking helps me breathe better and helps me keep my mind off the mileage.”
“Core training is key. Conditioning and a balanced diet will make those hours on the road enjoyable instead of painful.”
“Start yesterday. If you can find a dry safe road, get out for a ride. If not, hit the gym and use the cardio equipment. Build up your cardio endurance, push yourself now and your ride will be easier later. During the colder months, I do 30 minutes on the stair master five to six days per week, and I have my bike set up in my trainer at home. Get on your bike as much as you can.”
Remember, the Empire State Ride isn’t just about the physical challenge. It’s about raising funds for cancer research and impacting the lives of those who are fighting this disease. Knowing that you are making a difference will help push you through those long rides and challenging times.
Click here for more training tips and a sample training plan.