Training

Get ready for an early season sportive

If you want to get your sportive season underway early, check out these smart ways to ready yourself for the challenge that lies ahead… 

Testing Times

You’ll want to ride your best bike as you get your season underway, so check out our guide to bringing it out of hibernation here

If you find that you do need to change tyres, cassette, chain or cables, make sure you fit them at least a week ahead of your first sportive so you can test ride them and iron out any issues ahead of event day. Your first big ride of the season isn’t the place for experimentation. 

The Late Train

If you’re less than a week away from your first event of the season, there isn’t much you can do to force better form into your legs, assuming you have bigger targets to build towards in the summer, nor is it a time to ease off. Keep to your usual training regime, but make sure the day before the event is a rest day with a brief, light recovery ride at most. 

Dress for all weathers

Everyone is different, but at this time of year only the hardiest of riders would consider shorts and jersey to be adequate. Temperatures can vary from the low twenties to single figures, so arm and leg warmers are pretty much essential. You’ll usually have an early start so pair these with a gilet to keep the chill at bay. If things warm up, you can always whip them off later. A rain shell is also a good idea, not just for riding but also in case you end up at the side of the road fixing a mechanical problem in inclement weather. Pack some sun screen too – you never know! 

Sportive eve

‘Twas the night before your first goal of the season, and all through the house…. You should be eating well and hydrating yourself in preparation for the following day. Pasta or rice will ensure you have plenty of carbs on board, while sipping a sports drink throughout the evening will keep you hydrated and top up your electrolytes. Keep drinking in the morning, and eat a good breakfast, such as porridge and dried fruit. If you’ve had an early start and face a long drive to get to your event, make sure you take some food and drink to snack on and sip on the journey. 

 
Discover more great features on every aspect of cycling and get ahead of the pack with a subscription to Cycling Plus magazine. Prudential RideLondon participants can click here for an exclusive offer.