With the upcoming Endurance Race this Sunday, we thought it was high time we addressed this important topic. Maybe it will get some of you folks who are endurance-resistant to give it a shot!
It will get you fit.
One great thing Endurance racing does is build fitness. Even if you just go out and try to survive at an easy pace, racing for hour after hour is great training. Longer rides promote angiogenesis, that is new blood vessel growth, so that you can get oxygen to your muscles more efficiently. Also longer rides help burn calories and increase your fitness. It’s definitely going to hurt, but you’ll be stronger after you’re done (just remember to recover before you try it again). By finding a pace you can sustain for the entire race, you’ll learn your limits and how hard you can push at what intensity.
That wonderful sense of accomplishment.
At the end of an Endurance race, you sit and ask yourself, “Did I really just do that?”. By doing something you may have never done before, it gives you a sense of accomplishment that you can draw from later on. The next time you’re suffering in a shorter race or group ride, you can just say “I pushed for way longer than this in that endurance race, I can get through this no problem”. After doing ORAMM I found myself in a really tough road ride on my MTB shortly thereafter. Instead of giving up when it got hard after 40 miles, I just said “look, this isn’t going to be as tough as Curtis Creek Climb, just hang on and you’ve got this”. It worked: I was the only MTBer left at the end of the road ride, but I was there.
Guilt Free Eating
I know we all joke about riding just so we can eat (ok, maybe it’s just me), but Endurance Racing takes that to a whole new level. Sure, after a good weekend of riding you can probably get away with that extra scoop of ice cream or a few cookies. But after a 6 hour race? I haven’t done the math, but I think you get a free pass for basically whatever you want to eat. During a race you’re only going to consume a fraction of what you’re burning all day, so you’ve gotta rebuild those energy stores, right? #fatfitness
New Perspective on Suffering
I’ve done a handful of endurance races, and there’s always a point where you ask yourself if you’ve bitten off more than you can chew. The answer is usually yes, but you can either quit or figure it out. Throughout the day there will be setbacks and adversity, and you have to dig deep to get through them and push onto the finish line. Once you’ve gone through that, it puts a perspective on other unpleasant things in life. Got a 2 hour staff meeting at work? Not nearly as tough to endure as 6 hours of grinding it out as hard as you can on a bike.
If some is good, more is better
Look, if you’re reading this, you probably like riding bikes. So, what if you could ride your bike a lot. Like, all day? Yeah, that’s what we’re talking about here. While it may seem like the fun never stops in an endurance race (ok maybe that’s the suffering), ripping around the woods for most of a day is really, really fun. Even if it hurts a little.
If you’re still not convinced about this weekend, don’t forget we have a 3 hour option AND we have team options! You could ride as little as an hour or two and be done. The best part is all the time you’ll get to spend with BikeMinded people. 😉 Come join us Sunday at Jonathan Dickinson to raise some funds for Club Scrub.
Notice: BikeMinded is volunteering time as race organizer and receives no monetary gain for the promotion or organization of this race.