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Ashland Watershed Loop
Nothing about this ride is ordinary; the road is single-lane decomposed granite, the route is remote (like cycling in the wilderness), and the surrounding landscape is breath-taking. Yo...
Crater Lake Loop
This is probably the classic ride in Southern Oregon. It brings everything a rider could want to the table. It's a short 33 mile loop around the lake with several options for start...
There aren't many places around with views like you get on the Mt. Ashland Road. Once you clear the initial mile you are thousands of feet above the landscape below and the horizon...
Applegate Dam via Sterling Creek
This route leaves from Jacksonville and starts to climb immediately on Cady Road. Once at the top of Cady you make a left onto Sterling Creek Road. The climb from Jacksonville to the...
Triple Peak Challenge
Looking for something a bit out of the ordinary? Try riding to the top of Dead Indian, Mount Ashland and the Greensprings in one day. The total elevation gain for the 92-mile thigh-burn...
Butte Falls Prospect
The Butte Falls/Prospect Loop is an amazing ride into the cascades. It has some good climbing - nothing that will break the legs - and superb scenery. Traditionally the club rides will...
Cedar Flats/Deer Creek
Experienced cyclists who've exhausted all of the possible rides and loops in the Medford/Ashland area may not be aware of this very challening loop south of Grants Pass. Like the C...
The Woodrat ride is a great intermediate length loop that quickly takes you out of the populated Rogue Valley into a forrested rural area. The ride is roughly 46 miles with 3000 feet of...
Salmon River Loop
If any ride speaks to the rugged beauty of the State of Jefferson, the very challenging Salmon River Loop does it in spades. This 100 mile loop is in the middle of one of the least deve...
Cantrall Park Loop
The route up to the top of Cantrall Road is strenuous but worth the effort. You climb through thick fir forests mixed with madrone trees. The average gradient of the climb is 8.9% wi...
The ride to Applegate Lake and back is possible at just about any time of the year, it just so happens that it's about the best moderate length ride to open the season in the sprin...
The road to Anderson Gap is one of only a few paved one lane roads that climb into the mountains above the Bear Creek Valley. It does this in spectacular fashion. I enjoy hard climbs. A...
Galice to Wolf Creek Loop
Ride goes from Galice Resort to Wolf Creek. This is a scenic route along the Rogue River and Graves Creek for much of the route. There are many miles on Graves Creek Road that is a si...
The Lakes Loop
The Lakes Loop is a great training ride in the weeks before the Mountain Lakes Challenge (MLC). It incorporates all of the really hard parts of the MLC and still gets in roughly 50 mile...
Conde Creek Loop
The Conde Creek Loop is one of the harder rides the Club will run each year. It is very similar to the Cedar Flats/Deer Creek Loop in that it is generally a rolling/flat ride with one v...
PP - Paceline Prudence
The Siskiyou Velo will hold a rally on Thursday, January 25 at 5:00 pm at Medford City Hall in support of bicycle facilities – for “all ages and all abilities.” The rally supports efforts to ensure that future bike facilities in Medford will serve everyone: youth, adults, seniors, people with disabilities and families. Riding a bicycle should not require bravery which is a key component of “all ages and all abilities” bike facility design. Everyone who rides a bike or would like to ride a bike is welcome. For more information contact Gary Shaff at firstname.lastname@example.org check-out the event page on the Club’s Facebook Page.
Posted by Gary Shaff 2 days ago | 1 comment | View/Post New Comment
See this article from the Bend Bulletin on Jan 16: http://www.bendbulletin.com/localstate/5924369-151/prosecution-driver-in-fatal-crash-berated-cyclists.
I’m posting this just so people are aware of the attitude of some motorists. Be careful out there. If there is an update on the court case, I’ll post that.
Posted by Jeff Roberts 2 days ago | 0 comments | View/Post New Comment
As most of you know, I have been offering a series of “low intensity” rides, intended not only for people who ride like that all the time, but as a specific “off season” training opportunity for stronger riders. In it’s third year, I have found the LI approach to be highly beneficial to my own cycling fitness. Over the last few years, I’ve ridden six to eight weeks each mid winter, keeping the effort at 70% or less of maximum sustainable heart rate. The result has been loss of weight, leaner body mass, and fewer injuries when I start riding harder later in the spring.
The approach is based on the work of long-time ultra distance cyclist John Hughes and Dr. Phil Maffetone (the “Maffetone Method”). They aren’t the only ones. Peter Sagan, the rising star of professional cycling uses a modified version in which he continues to climb and do interval training in the “off” season but at 70% of the effort he would do them at peak training effort. I’ve mixed in some of that this year, with no ill effects.
There are OTHER quite contradictory approaches. If you follow Chris Carpenter or Tom Danielson’s coaching methods, they stay intense year around. You have to decide for yourself what works, but athletes who experience repeated injuries, burnout, or weight gain (especially body fat increase), might benefit greatly from the low-intensity approach. Here’s generally how you do it:
- Determine your maximum sustainable heart rate. There are several methods, but what you can maintain for 20 minutes on a flat road is a good one. Mine’s about 165-170. There are adders and subtractors based on age and fitness level.
- Design and execute all your workouts to keep your heart rate under 70% of that level. This takes some discipline, especially in our geography. Hills are hard to avoid, and midwinter often brings a lot of wind. I found myself riding at less that 5 mph on Greensprings one day uphill into the wind in my lowest gear and I still couldn’t keep my HR below target.
- Some club members use power meters. A simple approach is to take what you “normally” do and keep it down. If you normally ride 150 watts, then keep it to 100.
- You can also use a level of perceived effort method. At the easiest level, you can carry on a normal conversation, using full sentences and completed thoughts. As you go up the scale, it declines to a few phrases, then a word, then an incomprehensible grunt as you try to chase Bob M or Dennis C up a hill. The low intensity approach keeps you chatting away for hours.
- Most of the coaches in this method will tell you 8 weeks of this is the minimum. 12 is better. Then you ramp back up to normal slowly.
- Diet plays a role. Most recommend higher fat/higher protein during this time, but a lot of coaches are going to that approach all the time anyway. The Really Big Thing is NO SUGAR. No cookies, candy, baked goods with added sugar, etc. None. Zero. Zip. Nada. I like to make yogurt based smoothies, but you’d be surprised at how much added sugar is in some yogurts. Read the labels carefully.
- You teach your body – your liver, specifically – to use more fat. At least that’s the theory with some evidence to support it. In fact, if you dig deeper into the approaches recommended, most of them include not eating carbs or not eating at all on any ride under 4 hours. Your body should be able to sustain an all-day effort on fat alone, but you have to stay aerobic and low intensity to do that. You still have to manage electrolytes – I do this with tablets, but you could use pickle juice or something like that with little sugar.
- As a result of that, you’ll get leaner. I typically lose about 1 pound a week off my 180-pound frame during this time. Some of it comes back as I add muscle mass during the climbing season, but overall I’m lighter now than I was three years ago.
- The low intensity approach gives your muscles and connective tissue time to heal from a summer/fall of riding the Lakes Route! At the same time, because you are still riding and still putting in some significant miles, you keep your joints well lubricated and your overall fitness does not really decline. Each year I have done this, I have begun the spring “ramp up” at a higher baseline than the year before.
Another related thing I’ve started incorporating year around is “periodization.” I’ll do another writeup on that, specifically, but Hughes really goes into this. Basically, if you are training for anything – a century, double century, whatever – you train 2-3 weeks “on” and one week “off.” I did this last year with good effect. The “off” week isn’t really that “off” but you typically don’t do any major climbs, hard interval type workouts (like riding with the Wednesday group), or century-distance training rides. It’s kind of like a “mini” low-intensity period – but just one week out of four.
If you’ve missed my Low Intensity riding series, you still have time to take advantage of this approach. You could start, say, first of next month and do it for 8 weeks. Then start ramping up to your regular riding level. It’s also helpful if you have REALLY taken time off – that is, you ate your way through the Holidays and the bike got rusty. Diving right into a heavy riding routine, especially if you are an, ahem, older rider, is a good way to get hurt.
Let me know if you have questions.
Posted by Edward Broyles 3 days ago | 0 comments | View/Post New Comment
Ever wonder what it would be like to ride your bike without fear of the risk posed by nearby motor vehicles? If such a place existed, would you choose to live there?
I believe it is possible to make your town a bicycling paradise. Far fetched you say…given the existing absence of bike facilities on many streets; or where they do exist their narrow width, or close proximity to high speed, high volume motor vehicle traffic. But it is possible, even in your hometown, provided you live in one of Oregon’s metropolitan areas.
Oregon law, more specifically the Transportation Planning Rule (TPR) requires that local governments in metropolitan places like Medford and Grants Pass, among six others in State develop regional transportation plans that include “safe and convenient” bicycle transportation systems (OAR 660-12-000(1)c. In addition, the TPR explicitly requires cities in Oregon to “avoid principal reliance upon any one mode of transportation,” and to provide for a “significant increase in the share of trips made by alternative modes, including walking, bicycling, ridesharing and transit.” The TPR also anticipates that cities in metropolitan areas “will accomplish reduced reliance” (on the automobile) “by changing land use patterns and transportation systems so that walking, cycling, and use of transit are highly convenient and so that, on balance, people need to and are likely to drive less than they do today.”
The TPR was adopted in 1991 and 27 years later there hasn’t been much progress (except in Portland). But that is about to change. No more will it be sufficient to put bike lanes on arterial and collector streets and call it good. That was how most local governments in Oregon approached providing for people riding bicycles. Gratefully, few people have died using them but that’s largely because few people used them and those who did were “strong and fearless” or were otherwise skilled in “riding in traffic.”
But the future of cycling has turned brighter. Most people who have studied the issue know that separating cyclists from adjacent traffic (such as using a protected bikeway), and controlling speeds and traffic volumes are all critical to creating a low stress cycling environment. Which, in turn, is critical to people actually using a bicycle for transportation.
Many are skeptical that such changes are possible in their city and whether people would choose to cycle if the bike facilities were low stress. Skeptics should read Making Cycling Irresistible: Lessons from Netherlands, Denmark, and Germany.
Posted by Gary Shaff 4 days ago | 0 comments | View/Post New Comment
I saw this on the BBC and thought you should see it:
Cycling does not harm men’s sexual health, study says – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-42651568
Posted by Gary Shaff 1 week ago | 0 comments | View/Post New Comment