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Reply To: Looking to ride for fitness & altruism – need advice

Csprint, January 21, 2016 at 8:17 pm

Congratulations on your enthusiasm! It probably goes without saying that a doctor’s clearance to attempt this much of a consecutive effort should be sought.

A cyclocross (‘cross) bike is a great choice for Ragbrai! It has somewhat more laid back and stable geometry for long days. Clothing is crucial, including good quality shorts, a good jersey with pockets for sundries, obviously a helmet, gloves, good sunglasses, good shoes and socks that wick perspiration, and sunblock (I ran out last year!). A flat repair kit and a good multitool that you have practiced using on your bike beforehand, neatly packaged and easily gotten to under the seat, is a good thing.

The bike checked out for a clean bill of health a month before Ragbrai is a good thing too. It’s the unexpected that’ll get you. Something I saw last year happened to a rider I tried to help, and couldn’t. Her rear tire blew just before descending off the Coralville Reservoir Dam, and while volunteering to help fix the flat, I noticed the tire had separated from the bead, and there is no fix for that. She didn’t have, and no one else had a spare tire.

Fortunately the ride is a series of short rides each day, strung together. It need not be such a hard effort that you have to hurt yourself to complete each day. Getting in with a team/club is a source for a support system since you’ve never done the ride before.

I would certainly look up Ragbrai’s guide to participating, as well.

Good Luck!

#1119128 |

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