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  • Writer's pictureJason Ryser

New to Cycling Relay Racing? Here's What to Expect

Updated: Dec 27, 2022

Whether you're new to cycling or are considering expanding your cycling experience, relay racing might be a great place to start. But before you just jump into trying a long-distance cycling relay, you may have some questions about what to expect.

Don’t worry because we’ve got you covered. In this blog, we'll cover some important points to help you get started in this exciting and rewarding activity.

Training for Long-distance Cycling

Before you tackle a long-distance cycling relay, it's important to build up your endurance and strength. If you're new to cycling or haven't been on a bike in a while, you can start by going on regular rides and gradually increasing the distance and intensity of your training. This takes patience and a bit of determination, but the improvements you will see far outweigh the negatives.

You can also incorporate strength training exercises, such as squats and lunges, to build up the muscles in your legs and core. Cycling isn’t just about your legs. It actually activates all of your large muscle groups and requires a lot of strength and control of your back and abdomen to remain balanced while cycling.

It's also a good idea to practice cycling in different weather conditions and terrain, as this will help you prepare for a variety of racing situations. For example, if you live in a hilly area, practice cycling up and down hills to build up your leg strength. If you'll be cycling in hot and humid weather, make sure to hydrate properly and dress appropriately.

In addition to physical training, it's also important to focus on your mental preparation. Long-distance cycling can be mentally challenging, as it requires focus and determination to maintain a consistent pace over a long period of time. To train your mental endurance, try practicing mindfulness techniques, such as meditation or deep breathing, which can help you stay focused and calm during the race.

Long Distance Cycling Relays

When you think of cycling, you may assume that it is an individual sport. While there are elements that focus on one person’s ability and performance, cycling can incorporate an entire team. Long-distance cycling relays are a fun and exciting way to challenge yourself and test your endurance as part of a team.

In a cycling relay, teams of riders take turns cycling a set distance, with each team member completing one or more legs of the race. A long-distance cycling relay also requires a support team that follows each cyclist and provides hydration, nutrition, first-aid, and many other forms of physical and emotional support.

One of the key aspects of long-distance cycling relays is teamwork. You'll be working with a group of other cyclists to cover the distance as a team, which means you'll need to communicate with your teammates, plan your strategy, and work together to ensure a smooth and successful race.

It's also important to pay attention to pacing. It's easy to get caught up in the excitement of the race and push yourself too hard, but it's important to find a comfortable pace that you can maintain for the duration of the race. Remember to pay attention to your body's needs, such as staying hydrated and eating enough to fuel your ride.

Cycling for Beginners

If you're new to cycling and are considering trying out a long-distance cycling relay, there are a few things you should keep in mind. First and foremost, it's important to start slow and gradually build up your endurance. Don't try to take on too much too soon, as this can lead to burnout or injury. Patience is a virtue, especially when it comes to cycling. Increasing your stamina and abilities with small and steady increments is the best way to reach your long-term cycling goals.

It's also a good idea to seek out a cycling group or club in your area. This can be a great way to meet other cyclists and get support and advice as you get started. Many cycling groups offer a myriad of different rides for riders of all skill levels, so you can find a ride that's just right for you and your abilities.

In addition to training and finding a supportive community, it's also important to pay attention to your equipment. Make sure you have a bike that fits you properly, as this will make your rides more comfortable and efficient. You also need a good-fitting helmet to protect your head from damage in the case of any falls or collisions. Consider investing in some repair tools and spare parts for your bike as well.

Join the Saints to Sinners Relay!

Since 2009, the Saints to Sinners Bike Relay has brought people together to raise awareness and funds to fight ALS. The race travels from Salt Lake City, Utah, to Las Vegas, Nevada, and was created to honor Ron Frandsen and his battle with ALS.

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord characterized by the degeneration and death of motor neurons, which are responsible for controlling voluntary muscle movement. This leads to muscle weakness, paralysis, and eventually, respiratory failure, as the muscles involved in breathing become weakened.

There is currently no cure for ALS, and treatment options are limited to medications that can help manage symptoms and prolong survival. Research is necessary to find new treatments and a potential cure for ALS because the cause of the disease is not fully understood, and current treatments are not effective at reversing or halting the progression of the disease.

Together we can beat this terrible disease that is so devastatingly impacting the lives of those we love. Contact us with any questions or if you are interested in participating in Saint to Sinners Bike Relay as either a rider or volunteer.

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