Last summer, over 4,000 women participated in 100km rides all around the world. This year’s Rapha Women’s 100, the second annual ride, takes place on July 20.
Here’s some advice from local coach Tara Parsons on preparing for the ride:
- Set goals: Make a plan on paper. Whether you share it with others or keep it for yourself, having your plan written down helps make it real.
- Visualize it: Envision the route and how you will ride it so it is less of a mystery — go pre-ride the course ahead of time if possible.
- Be positive and think of yourself as a winner: Create a mantra for yourself to get over your fears. Tara used to hate fast descents, so she consistently told herself that she loved the downhills to finally conquer and embrace them. (This is a strategy that is handy on Saturday morning race days before the sun is up: “I love waking up at 4am to go race! Getting dressed in the dark and leaving the house while the rest of the world is asleep is the best!”)
- Have a support system: Ride with a buddy! Don’t have a riding buddy? Join a group training ride and make a new buddy! Habitat’s women’s Friday morning rides start up again in April. And the women of the Rapha Cycle Club are hosting Sunday morning rides all spring and summer to prepare for the big event. It’s much easier to get to the top of a tough climb if you know that you’re in good company. If you’re interested in getting more into road racing and want to meet more female racers, check out the CRCA Women’s Clinic in April.
- Make it happen: Gradually ramp up to the distance. Start doing intervals and increasing your distance, and before you know it, you’ll be ready.
The Rapha Women’s 100 welcomes all women who love to ride — whether you regularly ride long distances or you just got a road bike and are looking to set longer goals for yourself. If you’re looking to connect with more women in NYC who love to bike, and to challenge yourself along the way, come join the ride!