Sat, 22nd - Otsuki big loop!

WhiteGiant

Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
1,192
240
93
Kita-Ueno
#1
Hey guys,
Here's a loop that I've wanted to try for AGES!
It's a fairly hefty ride with 4-and-a-half big climbs:
Matsuhime-toge, Imagawa-toge, Yanagisawa-toge, Something-else (TOM knows the name)-toge, and Sasago-toge. It's fairly explanatory once you see the map.
See the MAP here.

According to the map, it's about 126km.
My goal for this ride (as in previous rides) is to carry all my food (bananas, bars gels, etc.) with me - There'll be NO convenience stops (Filling up drink bottles at vending machines is definitely allowed though).
The pace, however, won't be fast - Let's call it "medium" paced.
Oh, and did I mention, if we can manage to stay together as a group (as much as possible) we won't need to stop at all.

There aren't that many trains to Otsuki, and the best one I can find that might suit everyone leaves Shinjuku at 8:14, and arrives at 9:34.
I'd prefer an earlier start, but that would mean paying extra for the "Tokkyu-ken".
I expect the ride to take anywhere from 5 hours (if we're feeling good, and have no mechanicals) to 6 hours - Getting back to Otsuki station by 4pm at the very latest.

If you're up for a 5-hour non-stop medium-paced ride, please join us.

So far, Takaaki has expressed interest. Any other takers?
 

bird

Speeding Up
Nov 30, 2010
322
18
38
Kawasaki
#3
Interested, but unfortunately I'm flying back from Bangkok that very morning.
:(

The route looks partly like the one I did early last month. Sasago-toge was closed at the tunnel that time due to road repair on the other side (Otsuki side), but it was around 5 pm on Saturday and construction workers had just left the place, so I had no problem sneaking thru the barricade. I wonder if the road block is still there.

Eugen
 

TOM

Maximum Pace
#9
nice one! Some people, including me, refer to the toge following Yanagisawa as Kamihikawa-toge (a bit below Daibosatsu-toge) - but there seem to be different readings for this pass. Will think about joining this ride. If I decide to go (no train for me), I will probably skip Sasago-toge and ride homewards through the tunnel below.
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#10
Well, I suggest we do something like that since we're trying for the Tour of Okinawa. This is a good chance to work together and optimize the group effort!

Great to have you along Tim.
Are you going to drag Kimm & I up to the top of every hill, like you did on Mike's TCC Sprinter's ride?
That was a great experience (TT-ing up a mountain), but I'm not sure I want to do that for a full 126km...:eek:
 

kimm

Maximum Pace
Dec 25, 2009
193
25
48
tokyo, arakawaku
#11
Sounds great to me! Another TTT training and our ACE must be Travis.
Which means I have to attack sometimes to make emperor Takaaki exausted? :D

See you at the front car!

Kimm
 

WhiteGiant

Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
1,192
240
93
Kita-Ueno
#17
I am a definite maybe.
Why not do this loop clock-wise? It would give the option to head back via Oume.
>Malte: I don't know why, but it has just always been done anti-clockwise, so... "Tradition"! That's why we go that way. I suppose going the opposite way wouldn't hurt, but I think a lot of guys want to get Matsuhime-toge out of the way first, rather than have it as the final climb.

Sounds great to me! Another TTT training and our ACE must be Travis.
Which means I have to attack sometimes to make emperor Takaaki exausted? :D
Kimm
>Kimm: Trust me, I will NOT be our ACE. We're going to leave that to "Drill-Sergeant Tim Smith", to put us all in line, and drive us up the wall...errr... hill.


Anyway, it looks like a good fast group so far:

Takaaki (Kawa)
Kimm
Tim (GSAstuto)
Eric (inIkebukuro)
Josh (j-sworks)
Travis (WhiteGiant)
Malte - *possibly!

I don't want to jinx anything, but if for some reason the ride gets rained out for Saturday, who is up for doing this ride Sunday? :bike:
>Pete: First of all, your jinx is not accepted! Besides, I have to work this Sunday, so... ummm.... NO!
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#19
Hi - here's an idea if you're into it (several are in our team for ToO) so ....

Pre-Ride: That means today especially and Friday. Just go out and ride for about 30min at medium tempo to get your heart rate up. Then followed by 2 or 3 shortish intervals at max effort (2min each with no more than 2min rest). Then immediately after the 2nd interval do a 30s sprint at your even highest effort. (Full lactate intolerance). THEN: (the important part)

- Immediately drink a high carb recovery drink. Get about 200kcals and 40gr Carbs. FYI Use High5 2:1 or 4:1 for this and mix with Soy Milk and a big dollop of oiliosaccaride (you can get at most Japanese food stores). Stretch out really well and relax for an hour. Repeat this on Friday morning.

Ok - so doing this will open your 'carb window' as wide as possible and you'll get a good pre-load of carbs and glycogen for the ride on the following day. Important is to get your effort as high as possible on the last mini-sprint. If you see stars and feel you are going die, you are pretty close - so you need to push it just a little more than that.

Ride Suggestions:

1) Plan on no more than 250kcals /hr. This means for a 5hr ride carry about 5 gels or powder or bars or whatever makes up the amount.

2) Carry some electrolyte tablets you can either mix with your regular water or just dissolve in your mouth. I use the latter cause I like fresh water. Most tabs are designed for about 1 per 500ml - so , you end up using about 1 per hr.

3) Start the ride with 2 bottles - 1 bottle of water and 1 with a premix of your energy drink (again - counts toward the 250kcal/hr) If you don't have energy drink powder ongoing - you can take a gel and just mix it in the water for the next round. Or grab some powder (I have some if you need).

On-Bike refuelling works like this:

Always ride and refresh as a group. It's easier if everyone is taking their refreshment periods roughly in the same time and ride zone. This is where you just 'take 5' easy on the bike and get your gel, banana, bar or whatever in your gut and drink some extra water.

In between refreshment zone we should be riding 'at tempo'. This means at similar effort we did the HC in the sprinter's ride last week. Remember? You should be at close to your LAT but not exceeding it. We ride to the LCD (lowest common denominator) , so , the rider with the lowest zone makes the pace. Don't be afraid to tell the bunch to slack off. If we lose a rider its like losing a piston in an engine. You have to start thinking that way.

During the tempo section just keep sipping water mostly and grab a quick swallow now and then of your energy stuff. But not too much. You want to keep the body turned to 'effort' much more than 'digestion'.

If we need water - then we send a waterboy. This means the bunch slows down and <someone> gets to ride ahead with a few bottles and fill them up. Or grab a couple of large bottles ata a conbini then ferry them back. Then we refill on the fly. Doesn't matter how slow we go - just that the bunch doesn't stop. Waterboy gets to stay on the back as long as they like as 'reward'.

Formation:

Ride in as tight a bunch as practical. Never pull from the back (Pete, you know how I feel about that). If you're tired up front , then you simply drop back. This is NOT A SPRINT CUE. The bunch should stay at EXACTLY the same pace. We don't have to rotate as tight we did on the HC, but just keep rotating. Never pull more than 30s, ideally. As example, when I was riding with Team Tecas with Emma Pooley and BMC in the house the average 'pull' was less than 10s . And the bunch was big enough that the front peeled off in pairs on either side. So it was a nice rolling pace line at about 45-53kph. You simply can't keep up that kind of speed with a 30s or 5min pull. But you can do it nearly endlessly at 10s intervals.

Flats. Hopefully we'll be good on this. I promise to get rid of ANY MAXXIS tubes I have and make sure to have a friggin CO2 with a plunger! I suggest everyone pack a CO2 as well and / or a sealant charger. (GEAX, Vittoria, Effeto, etc). So - if you get a punc, you can seal and CO2 quickly. best is just preload your tubes with about 20ml of sealant from the get-go. This isn't a race - so we don't care if the tires are 20-50gr heavier. If you do get a flat - raise your arm and yell FLAT. The bunch will then just slow down. You fix the flat the catch back on. Remember - we can't lose a piston. it's customary to drop a liaison to check on the status - for example if your tire is completely hosed and will take more time to fix , etc. Then the liaison can report back to the bunch.

NO WATTS! The bunch rides together to the top. At the 5km mark we can split to allow some spread. So if there are any genki KOM's in the house - they can get theirs. BUT - then we do what FE knows very well. If you are KOM or ahead of the bunch by any substantial amount - you circle back and jump on the last rider up the hill. This way the bunch will crest together - optimally - and keep riding. This really only applies if you are like 5min or so ahead of the last rider (which I don't expect). Otherwise , just roll through the summit , then slack on the descent until everyone is grouped. Same on the descent - if you want to let your ya ya's and have a flying descent, fine - but at the bottom, slack off and regroup. No stopping and no 'break aways'. If you wanna be nice - then at least go get some water and snacks for the group.

Anyway - this is just a suggestion cause I know a few of us are actually somewhat training for the Tour of Okinawa, and personally I want to ride at pretty close to a race tempo and state. My race tempo (at 55yo) should be only 60-70% of anyone under 30 - so you get my reasoning here. This shouldn't be 'too hard' for any conditioned rec-rider to handle. And in fact we rode thousands of km of Sunday Club rides like this 'back in the day' - It's how you mix up a VC with riders from all skills and ages. Everybody follows the same rules. If there is a very advanced bunch - they can split into a front group. But we only have a few riders, so I don't see that happening.

In essence - you ride exactly the same way as you would for a race, but the pace is moderated by the slowest in the bunch - NOT the fastest. So, it's kind of opposite of a race - but the same, does that make sense? Pace will always push itself in any conditioned bunch - so don't worry, it won't be slow. It will just be moderated.

Drops. While I wouldn't expect anyone to be dropped - it can happen. If you wanna drop, then don't be shy - just inform the bunch that you are going off the back. There is always a chance to regroup, for example at the refreshment zones, but the bunch will not be expecting or plannign for it. A drop is just a drop. Anyone can have a crap day or mechanical problem. Though - in our case - if you have a mechanical - we will all work together to make sure we can either get the machine back on the road - or escort to the closest bail out. Remember - it is not a race. Just a typical tempo ride.