How Long Does Your Longest Pre-Fondo Training Ride Need To Be?
How many miles do I need to ride in training to be ready for my event? I get asked some variation of that question all the time from cyclists getting ready for a century, gran fondo, gravel grinder, or endurance mountain bike event. Do you need to ride 60 or 75 miles during a training ride to be ready for a 100-miler? Does the length of my longest single training session matter?
Yes and no. There is nothing magical about achieving a specific percentage of the race or event distance in a single training ride. Marathon runners religiously use a 20-mile training run as a marker of preparedness to complete the event. Some cyclists and coaches insist on completing a 75-mile training ride in order to be ready for a century. Both are approximately 75% of the total event distance, but neither makes a significant difference in finish rates. So, then, what does make a difference?