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How hard is day 3?

I trained last year for a two day 150 mile event in mid-September (century the first day, 50mi the second), and as I go through my logs, I rode about 800mi from March till the ride.  Training-wise, I was right where I needed to be (okay, more is almost always better, but I was happy and enjoyed the ride.)

I was happy to discover that, aside from being saddle-sore the first few miles, that day 2 wasn’t all that bad.  I doubt I could’ve done day 1 again (100mi, about 5500′ climb), but 50mi/1800′ on day 2 was entirely manageable.

RAGBRAI’s a little longer.  How much worse are days 3 through 7?

21 Replies

jwsknk, March 29, 2011 at 2:56 pm

Terrain wise it should be pretty eay, but so many other thing can happen, wind directionm heat, humidity, how late the party the night before went, how much dancing in the streets, how much sleep you got, how you ate yesterday for todays ride, and what and where foor/drink are available during the day, and were you pushing big gears or spinning?
I would try to get at least 1000 before the ride.Like you said, more is almost always better. Make a few of those rides back to back days starting off 30 -40 and working up 50-60 or more.
day 5 Baxter to Grinnell is the stretch later in the week with no towns later in the day that might challenge some people not because it a hard hilly section, just that time of the day and week.


knees36, March 29, 2011 at 4:08 pm

Day 3 should be okay…very flat terrain except for some small rollers here and there but with two memorable hills if you might be worried about that.  Hill #2 (in difficulty) is fairly short, but seemingly steep in grade on the small north-south portion of a mile or so section of CR#N65 between Lanesboro and Churdan.  I drove that hill the other day coming back from Woodbine and Cedar Creek must have been running very fast when it carved out its waterway many centuries ago.  Hill #1 is Pilot Mound Hill a few miles east of the town of Pilot Mound on CR#E18, also  known as Twister Hill…(was a movie made in the area to give it a new name?)  That hill will test a number of bikers who are geared improperly for very hilly terrain or those that might be a bit “trashed” after partying it up the night before in Carroll.  Otherwise, as Skunky said, other factors like heat, humidity, wind direction and/or any combination of any of the above factors may make Day #3 a “nice day to remember.”  In any event, by the time we reach Davenport we will have had one memorable RAGBRAI.  Have fun on your way across Iowa!!! 


verylastrider, March 29, 2011 at 8:57 pm

Training miles are definately important.  But hills that you will be shifting down and spinning on days 1,2,3, will be “No Gear Shift Change ” by days 4 and on. You will get stronger as the ride goes on, day after day.


jwsknk, March 30, 2011 at 7:16 am

knees, part of the 1996 movie “Twister” was filmed in the area and on the hill even though the film was set in Oklahoma.


kicks9, March 30, 2011 at 7:16 am

I’ll let you know on day 4 how hard day 3 was.


SFC JKL 2, March 30, 2011 at 12:32 pm

As long as you can wiggle your handlebars, you should be able to handle most of the ride for Day 3 (providing the wind isn’t totally uncooporative).  Training miles should get you over saddle soreness.  Use chamois butt’r or similiar product from the first second.  Better to have/use it and not need it, than to find out you need it later on.  By the time you realize you have a problem it’s already too late. 


Ragbrai Nation, May 14, 2011 at 8:08 am

If you make it to Carroll you can make it to Chicago.


jeffreydennis, May 22, 2011 at 2:30 pm

Day 3 is always a bit rough getting started for me but as the days go on most people actually feel stronger. Just keep going.


Amanda, May 22, 2011 at 8:20 pm

kicks9 said: I’ll let you know on day 4 how hard day 3 was.

Best answer ever!!


currieg2, May 23, 2011 at 8:32 pm

kicks9 said: I’ll let you know on day 4 how hard day 3 was.

Love the answer, can relate it to 2009. 

Massages are your friends and saved me after days 3,4 etc.  It gets easier each day.  Remember: you are not in a hurry, passthru towns can be fun and you can stop when you want for as long as you want.


tjdale, May 24, 2011 at 11:11 am

Depends on how much time you spend on the curb day 2!


MadCow, January 25, 2012 at 2:05 pm

How are people talking about specific sections of the route when the route hasn’t been announced yet?


jwsknk, January 25, 2012 at 2:32 pm

this was all about last year. we’ll see about this year. bet it crossed the DM river that day someplace and there will be at least 1 hill.


MadCow, January 25, 2012 at 3:03 pm

Right… my bad.


ehlent, January 25, 2012 at 5:03 pm

As far as the ride goes, Ragbrai is really a pretty easy ride, terrain wise.   The weather is by far the biggest concern or factor for ragbrai.   It can be very hot like last year, or actually quite cool and everything in between. 

If you can ride 2 long days in a row, then why couldn’t you do more?   It’s not a race,  just go out and ride.


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