Saturday, November 24, 2012

Trans Iowa V9: Registration Closes- Now For Some Training!

From The T.I.V9 Nerve Center
In a kind of weird week of registration, Trans Iowa reached its 120 field limit Friday. One day ahead of its scheduled closing. I have to admit that after getting only four entrants on Tuesday I had a little bit of doubt that the roster would get filled. But it did.

Now I will reiterate- If you end up finding out you will not make it- let me know ASAP!!

I will make a huge difference to me if you let me know when you find out/decide. Okay? Thanks.....

Otherwise, get that training regime cranked up. Right? lots of folks probably have a good idea of what to do, but for those of you that wonder about such intricacies, here are a few thoughts and tips I have for you. Hopefully some of you get something out of these....

  • Bike/Equipment: You probably have a rig in mind for this ride, but here are my thoughts on the bike and gear you choose. First- Make sure you are comfortable at three, five, and seven hours into your riding with your choices. How do you figure that out? Ride that many hours.....straight.....without stopping much, if at all. What won't suit you will quickly present itself. Then make changes, repeat, refine, repeat the ride process, until you get things squared away. Bonus: You have automatically set up a fantastic amount of base miles just by screwing around with equipment choices.
  • Prepare For The Worst: Prepare for bad things to happen- Bring an extra derailleur cable, (I've heard from a guy that actually had his ride saved by carrying one), bring a spare derailleur hangar, pack gear for cold temperatures, (It has been as cold as 28°F with wind chills into the teens), and pack food and water to get you by for at least 100 miles to start out with.
  • Hope For The Best: Figure out how to keep your kit to a minimum. Get your head on straight by training in bad conditions, terrible head winds, and at night. (Or all three at once!) Learn to always keep moving. Do these things and when you hit trouble on the road, or tough head winds, or a rough patch, you won't have a hissy-fit, or break down and cry. 
  • Don't Over Do It: Sometimes folks train too much. Overworked knees, sickness, and burn out have felled more than a few potential T.I. riders before they even lined up at the start. In the words of Trans Iowa co-founder Jeff Kerkove; "You have to rest as hard as you train."
  • Learn To Fuel Your Body From Convenience Store Fare: At some point, your gobble-de-gook protein paste will about make you want to rip the head off a ground squirrel and drink its blood. Really. I've seen this nearly happen a few times. Anyway, you will have to resupply at some point, and that means pizza slices, shriveled hamburgers, breakfast sandwiches, and Rice Krispie Treats. Remember- You will be attempting a triple century plus some that will extend into another day. You won't be wanting to exist by Nutritional Products alone for 28 hours or more. Besides, you probably couldn't pack enough on you to last that long anyway. 
 Through a mud splattered window...(T.I.V7)
Okay, with all that said, I will let you in on a little secret: Getting to Checkpoint Alpha at about 52 miles will be the toughest part of this event for many of you. I am not going to sugar coat this: It's going to be hard- not just a little hard, but really, really hard.

In fact I think it will be so hard that I extended the time to get there and there are no B Roads on the way there. None. The roads are that tough. This doesn't account for weather, which may make it even harder yet. So.....don't say I didn't warn ya.

Finally, I had a bit of a reminisce on the way to work Friday. The temperature was in the upper 20's, the wind was out of the NorthWest at about 20-25mph, and there was snow blowing in the wind.

Just like the beginning of T.I.V4. So, it can get nasty in Iowa in late April. Just don't get caught out under dressed or under-prepared.

More later....


Ari said...

Thank you for puttin all this effort to make this race happen. You know how much it means to us. I also would like to wish good luck to all riders on the list, specially to the rookies. I hope to see all of you out there in April. The Slender Fungus will be out in force!!

Barturtle said...

Just a quick question: one of the pieces of recommended equipment is a map of the area, do you know of a map that you would recommend?

Guitar Ted said...

@Barturtle: the map is for you if you get to a point where you might bail out. This will allow you to either (a) ride back to Grinnell, or (b) guide in your rescuers.

It is not necessary for the event's navigation. that is provided for by cue sheet.

So, any ol' Iowa map would do that shows the main roadways.