DerekJ_MI
Well, I'm signed up.  I'm in because I'm going to the training class is April so my entry is already done.  Nice.  So now the work begins (actually it's already started).  But I have questions as to whether or not I'm doing it right.

I'm in MI and it's winter here in MI so that means I'm indoors on a trainer.  I'm on my Specialized Road bike which is locked into a Kicker trainer unit.  I'm currently using Trainer Road as my training program.  I'm using their Sweat Spot Base High Volume II program for my base build up and I'm in week 3 of it. When the 6 weeks are done I'm going to then use their Build Phase - Sustained Power High Volume program for 8 weeks. I should finish just before I head to Emporia for the DK class.

The weekend before I head to Kansas I'll be riding in the Barry Roubaix 36 mile gravel grinder (I road it last year and it was very cool).  I plan on doing other longer gravel training rides on the road in lieu of the longer 2.5 to 4 hour trainer workouts to ramp up.  Real road time riding up real gravel hills is far better than any trainer workout! 

My questions are for those who have road in the DK200:

  • Is what I'm doing enough?  I will have two months after the training class to get more work done (ramp up more) and I expect to be out doors by that time, mostly that is.
  • Are there other trainer programs (The sufferfest, Strava or ?) that would be more suited to training for "this specific" event?
Any advice is appreciated!!

Thanks
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Lewis Madden
I haven't done the DK200 but will try to signup today. I have done several 10000 foot climbing centuries in Colorado and North Carolina over the years. The first two weeks of May should include 75-80% of the distance your attempting to ride at DK200 on gravel roads. Your base sounds good, I use trainer road and it's an excellent indoor option to build your fitness. Build your peak FTP strength at a 10-15% pace like trainer road coaching recommends. April and May should be increased road work on weekends rather than the trainer. Trainers can't simulate wind and road conditions. Gravel roads aren't smooth and dirt roads are muddy and there is a lot of those in the DK200 routes. You need to spend time gravel grinding.   
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DerekJ_MI
The Trainer Road program I'm using has extended cardio rides (2.5 to 4 hour) for your Sunday workout.  I'm going switch out of those and get outside anytime the weather is remotely cooperative (temps above 50 degrees and relatively dry snow/ice free roads).  But I'll likely ramp up my time in the saddle over what the Trainer Road wants me to do.  I'm thinking 4 to 6 hours to start then 6 to 8, 8-10 and so on as the weeks pass.  I'm going to try to maintain my cadence to maintain +/-14.5 mph throughout the rides.  I'm going to also try to pick as hilly a route as possible, but I'm limited living in southeast MI.  I'm thinking of riding in the Almanzo 100 two weeks before DK200.  That will be my peak.  We'll see.

Thanks!
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hughbike
I loved TR. Great program, great selection of workouts. However, the tedium was tough. Longest I was ever able to go was ~3 hours and that was with the music cranking.
Enter Zwift. 100s of training programs/workouts. Exact same price as as TR, $10/month.

I used it to train for the Belgian Waffle Ride last year (145 miles) and it was the perfect base training for me. I love it so much that I got over 6000 miles indoors last year (no I am not a freak!). I probably ride 12 hours/indoors year-round because it is so simple and great quality training (not junk miles).

Workouts are just an option. There are 20-30 races everyday. REAL RACES! People from all over the world! There must be a dozen (or more) FB pages dedicated to the game, providing humor, distraction and knowledge. I have done several centuries using Zwift and countless 4-5 hour rides. Since you are using TR, you already have the equipment you need and you can even try it free. If you really want to keep TR, try using Zwiftsearch.com  and see if you can pair the two. I highly recommend at least giving the free trial a go!
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DerekJ_MI
Thanks Hughbike for the intel.  Yes the shop where I bought my Kicker Unit likes and uses Zwift on their computrainers.  I went with the Trainer Road program because of several recommendations from other Century riders who use it.  I'll check it out.  The problem is that I'm new to all this trainer program stuff and really just want someone to say get this, do this program, stay on it and you'll be good to go cause it works!  Simple.  If this was September I'd say OK time to try a bunch of stuff out.  But I'm concerned that I'm already no doing enough to be ready.  Changing now, unless what I'm doing is really NOT GOOD is an option I'm not likely to take.  Does Zwift have a program for DK200 or such events?  Something that is good to go.  I agree with be tedium of TR however I have two flat screens set up and I can watch sports on the big screen and the TR program on the smaller screen and they are both in front of me next to each other.  So it's so far not too bad.
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hughbike
I don't think Zwift has training programs for anything longer than a century, but I imagine any program would be scalable. The difference between the 2 is that with TR I have only a graph to keep me honest, but with Zwift I am fully engaged in the ride. I don't need/crave distraction, I always have people to ride with and it keeps me motivated and on pace. Just my opinion. FWIW, A trial at Zwift will cost you zero $ and you will get 2 hrs training (up to 50k distance in the trial) you can base on what you would have done on TR anyway. I am not trying to sway you, it just works great for me. Do a side by side comparison of the build-up programs in TR vs Zwift, might be surprised
Just to shake it up more, a quick google search brought this up!
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RobF
I'm thinking about spending time carrying the bike, too.  At Land Run last year, I saw plenty of obviously fit people struggling to figure out how to carry the bike without wearing themselves out.
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KelI
I agree with spending time carrying the bike- I was one of those at LR100 who did struggle (more than I realized) as I wound up with back spasms shortly before reaching Perry.  Also, you should be doing core strengthening workouts- I started doing that following LR100.  That did pay off as I had no future back issues during DK200 (alas I didn't finish).  Last point I'd bring up is heat conditioning.  Bundle up more than you would normally if you're going out for a ride.  It's not just going to acclimate you to the probable heat you'll encounter in Kansas, but it'll force you to keep yourself hydrated.  Just my 2 cents.  Good luck with your training. 
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