Don’t hang up that bike just yet!
You have just finished RAGBRAI and hopefully you had a wonderful time. The weather wasn’t too bad, typical of Iowa in July. One thing is for certain. If you rode all of RAGBRAI, or even half of it, you are probably in the best shape you’ll be in all year, maybe even your whole life! There’s no way anyone can ride 200+ miles in one week without being in pretty good shape, even if you weren’t in the greatest shape when you started. Now here’s what bugs me. The weeks before RAGBRAI I see tons of bikes around Des Moines. A couple of weeks ago our local bike trail looked like an interstate. Loads of people out preparing for RAGBRAI. But then once RAGBRAI is over, the bike trails are deserted. Where have all you folks gone? Don’t waste all the great fitness you now have coming off of RAGBRAI. Keep your bike out and tires pumped up. In many places, late summer and fall are the ideal times to be out riding. It’s a little cooler than Iowa in July and less humid. And when you are in good shape as you are now, riding is easier. You can go faster and farther. All of a sudden, a 30 mile bike ride seems short. RAGBRAI has a way of doing that to you. Plus here’s another side effect of continuing to ride: the more you continue to ride this year, the better shape you’ll be in next year, allowing you to be more ready for next year’s edition. So put on your RAGBRAI jersey and hit the road or trails. I hope to see you out there. And thanks for reading along this year.
Coach David Ertl
David Ertl is a USA Cycling Level 1 (Elite) Coach and owner of Cyclesport Coaching (www.CyclesportCoaching.com) . He coaches individual cyclists, the Des Moines Cycle Club Race Team and the JDRF Greater Iowa Chapter for the Ride to Cure Diabetes. He can be contacted at Coach@CyclesportCoaching.com.