Rider FAQ

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Q: Many of the group ride dates are difficult for me, why must I attend group training rides? I can put in the kilometers on my own.

A: We all must learn to ride TOGETHER for energy savings (yours!) and safety (everyone's!) We must learn to be comfortable riding within 1/2 a wheel distance and 1/2 a handlebar distance from each other, in all weather, and no matter how tired we are.  If you do not train with the group, it will compromise the overall safety of the ride.



Q: I am finding the longer training rides painful in my knee(s) / hip(s) / sit bones / etc. Is this normal?

A: Yes and no. Some FATIGUE and lactic acid build up in your muscles is normal, but joint pain that continues through the next day or gets worse ride after ride is usually a sign of improper riding technique, poor bike fit, incorrect bike size, or a combination of these things. I suggest you seek the advice of a bike fitting professional to prevent the possibility of repetitive motion injury to yourself.  Rob Wright at South Shore cycle is a certified bike fitting professional.  If you have pain, the time to get it sorted out is NOW.



Q: It says I should have my bike "tuned up" before ride day? When should I do this?

A: Get your "tune up" done at the latest 2 weeks before ride date, and RIDE it (put some kilometers on!) afterwards to be sure everything is working properly! Make NO changes after that! If you wish South Shore Cycles to do a tune up for you, please do not wait to book your service until the last moment, they cannot handle 150 bike tune ups 14 days before the ride begins!



Q: I have some supporters / family that would love to "tag along with us", is that OK?

A: We cannot have any other vehicles / people except for our registered ride volunteers "along for the ride". No personal support teams along, either. The logistics would just be too complicated.  If your supporters wish to place themselves somewhere along our route where we can ride by while they cheer you ( US! ) on - we'd love that, but that is about the limit. Of course we'd love for them to meet us at the ride's end, too!



Q: I feel like the training rides are too difficult, and I am really having trouble keeping up. I'm getting discouraged. Maybe I shouldn't be here?

A: Reasonably fit individuals, that commit to the training, and DO THE WORK, usually do OK in the end. Those that have the most room to improve - usually improve the most, provided they put in the work!  It is NOT nearly enough to just ride the mandatory group rides. You must be training on your own as well.  If you are getting on your bike for a good ride 3 to 4 times per week, you are on the right track.  Typically, some should be long rides, some can be shorter, faster rides, you need to work on hill climbing, etc.  Cross training and strength training is also important.

PLEASE NOTE: There is a typical "training guide/plan" on this site but please understand, no one training plan can work for everyone.  The training plan outlined may be far too much for some riders and too little for others.  While many of the people involved in this event can offer advice on things like training and nutrition, etc. it is always wise to contact a professional about your own specific needs.

There are group rides available through Team Coastal and other riding clubs. Ride with a team or ride with a buddy, but get the pedals turning. Also, RIDE OUTSIDE - rides on a trainer and in spin classes are excellent, but they are no substitute for getting on the real bike and riding it. If you still feel you are having more troubles than you should be, speak to a ride captain.



Q: I have some special nutritional needs / allergies / lactose intolerance. etc. Can I bring my own food?

A: Communicate with the ride organizers about your specific needs ASAP. This is an issue that can be best worked out with them. In the past, riders with these kinds of medical needs brought their own food, and it was kept in separate locations, handled with separate implements, etc. etc. But DON'T wait until the last minute, we need to know NOW.  BTW, you can only bring your own menu for medical reasons.  We can't have separate menus for everyone. Your own specific power bars, gels, drink supplements, are your own responsibility, carry them in your day bag.



Q: I have a question that hasn't been addressed here?

A: Post your question on the appropriate forum and it will be answered ASAP. If it is urgent, contact the appropriate person on the "Contact us" forum. PLEASE - try to avoid sending EVERY question to Kerry and/or Vicki Kunzli - they can literally get hundreds of e-mails a per day.