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RAGBRAI Training: 2013 Training Plan

The most popular blogs every year is my training plan for preparing for RAGBRAI.  This has proven to be popular among riders.  So here is this year’s edition.  This is meant to be a guide, not necessary an absolute plan to be followed to a ‘T’.   The main thing it does is provides you with a target for the amount of riding you should be doing each week as you build up RAGBRAI.  The idea is to gradually build up distance each week and occasionally take an easier week to recover and rest.  While this plan has various miles on given days of the week, it doesn’t really matter which days you do these. If this doesn’t fit your schedule feel free to do these rides on other days. However, don’t try to jam it all in on weekends if you can avoid it. Try to ride 3-4 days a week.  It’s good to try to get a couple of shorter rides in during the week and then longer rides on the weekends.

While this plan doesn’t build you up to 400 miles of riding in a week (150 is the max), that is okay.  If you can work your way up to a 65 mile ride, with some other rides during the week, you should be able to handle RAGBRAI.  On RAGBRAI you don’t have to ride fast or hard.  You have many stops during the day and many chances to eat and drink, so your riding won’t need to be terribly strenuous, so you should be able to recover from day to day.  Sure, you will be fatigued as the week goes on, but as long as you take it fairly easy, you can ride day after day, once you build up the ability to ride a long distance in one day.

So if you haven’t been riding much yet, now is the time to get started.  RAGBRAI begins in three short months!  Build up gradually and you will be ready by July.

Coach David Ertl

David Ertl is a USA Cycling Level 1 (Elite) Coach. He coaches the Des Moines Cycle Club Race Team and is a national head coach for the the JDRF Ride To Cure Diabetes and he coaches individual cyclists. He also provides cycling training plans and ebooks at his website: http://www.CyclesportCoaching.com . He can be contacted at coach@cyclesportcoaching.com.

Click to access: RAGBRAI_Training_Plan_2013


10 Responses on “RAGBRAI Training: 2013 Training Plan

Coach David Ertl

April 23, 2013 at 9:12 am

I noticed this isn’t downloadable – we are working to get that fixed. Check back soon.

Profile photo of TJ


April 23, 2013 at 9:25 am

Sorry about that. Should be fixed. Or you can click http://ragbrai.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/RAGBRAI_Training_Plan_2013.pdf


Tom Moser

April 29, 2013 at 9:37 am

Is an Excel version of this training plan available. You had one last year, and it worked pretty well.

cindy c

May 4, 2013 at 4:01 pm

training still will not download

Coach David Ertl

May 10, 2013 at 7:53 am

Yes, I have an excel version I used to create this. I will see about getting it posted soon. Cindy, are you still unable to download the pdf file?


May 28, 2013 at 8:37 pm

We are only able to do one day (July 27) – are there any training plans for a single day route? Or should we follow this even though we’re only riding one day? I was thinking of it as training for 400 miles but maybe it’s better to think about training for 65!


July 11, 2013 at 2:45 pm

Coach Ertl,

I’ve gotten up to 125 miles in each week. I’m wondering if taking a week off (next week) will help or hinder me? I’m not sore in the saddle and feel comfortable with 40-50 mile rides. But I’m tired and wondered if a week off to rest my body will be good or will I set myself back by not putting any miles in next week?


July 12, 2013 at 5:34 am

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July 16, 2013 at 7:35 am

When I initially commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and now each time a
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Is there any way you can remove people from that service?


donde viajar

October 24, 2013 at 10:26 am

Outstanding article. I’d been reviewing constantly your blog using this program . motivated! Useful information in particular the continue component :) I personally cope with such information and facts considerably. I had been searching for this kind of particular information for a while. Thanks plus best of luck.

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