Please note that training rides are not sponsored by the BBP, nor have any other official connection with the BBP. We list training rides as a convenience and aid for like minded cyclists to meet and train and form community for the upcoming pilgrimage and thereafter. Thank you.  --BBP
[2006 Training Rides -- Please check back. Training rides will first be announced on our DharmaWheels group/email site.]
Training Ride FAQ
Q: Will there be SAG (support and gear) vehicles in case I can't finish or get injured?
A: Yes, on the pilgrimage, but NO on training rides. These are informal get-togethers and are not officially sponsored by DharmaWheels. In any case - in ALL cases - you should always be as self-reliant as possible. This means bringing, minimally, the flowing:
  1. a spare tube or patch kit,
  2. a pump or other forms of air dispenser
  3. appropriate clothing,
  4. some money,
  5. I.D., health insurance card
  6. a small First Aid kit and any medication you need
  7. ALWAYS wear a HELMET. Gloves and cycling-specific
    clothing are highly recommended.
  8. Cell phones are good for emergencies but service
    is often not available in areas we ride.
  9. Try to always ride with a partner or partners.
  10. Know where you are. Carry a map, as appropriate
Articles on Training
Excellent Training Article HERE
Riding Hills HERE

Training Notes


Use time, rather than distance, to measure amount of training.


From May through September, increase all your off-Saturday ride times by 10% for every 2-week period.


*1. After a hard ride, recovery rides clear the body and blood stream of lactic acid build-up and other toxins. Also helps to keep muscles from tightening up from the previous day’s hard work.


*2. Rest is very important. As training intensifies and increases, you will need more rest and sleep.


Rest can also be “active,” - walking, Tai-chi, soft Yoga, are all good ways to rest and give your body some variety in activities. Variety is good.


*3. Running can be a substitute for riding for building aerobic fitness and endurance. If you are pressed for time - 30 minutes of running is roughly equivalent to 90 minutes of riding. Also requires less gear and is safer to do in the rain than cycling.


*4. This is when you should get a good workout, but be sure to warm up with easy spinning for at least 20 minutes before really exerting yourself. Similarly, warm down with easy riding to end your ride. Do not stop abruptly from intense exertion.


Riding hard could mean climbing, riding fast in a big gear. Doing “intervals” is a quick way to develop strength and power.*


At all times, be sure to stay properly hydrated. Drink before and after rides and before you feel thirsty. The sensation of thirst comes from dehydration (very bad!) that has already taken place.

Sports drinks are helpful and more useful than water. They replace salts and electrolytes lost through perspiration.


Similarly, do not train on empty stomach. Eat adequately before each ride. Learn to eat on the ride. Riding “on empty” can bring on the dreaded “bonk” and can even do organic damage to your system. It does not make you tougher.


On a long ride, carbohydrates, though a major source of energy, will burn quickly. Fats are needed for slower, sustained burning, and proteins are needed for muscle repair.


“Carbo-loading” is an oft misunderstood concept. It does not mean eating a huge plate of pasta the night before. It involves starvation-like procedures, a

minimal time period of 7 days and very controlled conditions. Do not try this at home!


The best thing to do, as always, is to eat balanced meals. Go to bed early, stay away from drugs, alcohol and loose men and women.**




* This is too much to get into here, but there are many good books on training that deal with the concept of intervals. I found them (i.e., the books and intervals) very useful.


** I am not a nutritionist or doctor, so these tips are to be taken with a grain of salt (!) There are, however, many good books out there on the nutritional needs of the athlete, so get yourself educated!


Train Safe! Train Smart!


Live long and prosper!