Why? This is a question I've been asked many times recently. Its a massive 300 miles and I'll be riding for around 36 hours - Why?
The short answer is, why not? Everyone else seems to stop at 24 hours, why not go further?
The longer answer is, if you have a limit you will work to that limit. However if you remove the limiting factor, how much further can you go? I did a similar thing when I succeeded on the South Downs Double. Previously I only rode about 30 miles each weekend and had never ridden more than 100 miles in one go. At the time of planning, only 4 top riders had managed a sub 24 hour South Downs Double, with a 50% failure rate. To do a 200 mile ride appeared ridiculous, but it was awesome!
Very few people have ridden for more than 24 hours and I've not been able to reach the podium in any major race, my highest placing is 6th at Exposure 24 last year. I therefore set out to create my own podium on a course that I love to ride.
Yes, there are extra risks with riding into the unknown, so I sought the expertise of top 24 hour athletes to coach me and incorporated a medical team into the support crew.
The South Downs Triple has never been attempted before. Many have tried the South Downs Double where only 13 have achieved a sub 24 hour time. Last year there was only a 25% success rate for the Double, it's a tough cookie. As Rory Hitchins once said, "It's not the ride there that counts, but the ride back."
To conquer the South Downs Triple will set a new league for the history of the South Downs Way. Let's make history!
I am delighted that ForGoodness Shakes are supplying their recovery drinks, as I will need a number for the ride and to recover afterwards. Recovering from a 24 hour ride takes a few weeks, so it will be longer for this 36 hour challenge.
Please do take a moment to sponsor me. It is wonderful that two charities can benefit from my ride; the British HeartFoundation and St Marys Community Building Project in Reigate.
Over the last few weeks physio Anne Dickins has been working on my dynamic core stability. This strengthens and balances all the muscles which work specifically for cycling. The purpose of me doing dynamic core for cycling is to make me more efficient and comfortable on my bike. It will also make sure all the power I produce goes to the pedals.
In endurance events, it is really important to have a body which works properly as a small problem or pain will just get amplified over time. It will also prevent wasting energy on muscles working when they shouldn't. With Anne's assistance, I should be able to keep going for the 300 miles without 'too much' pain.