Charity Bike Ride For Fitness? Why Not?

Entering A Charity Ride: If you've been meaning to get involved in bicycling but don't know just where to begin, here's some food for thought. How about joining a fundraising charity bike ride? Entering a charity bike ride is a great way to get yourself in shape and at the same time raise money for a good cause. It can be a lot of fun where you'll be meeting new friends and helping people in need. Having an event to train for will also give you the extra motivation you need to get out the door and on your bike.

One of many charity rides for example is the Network of Strength Ride To Empower. The Ride to Empower is a destination bike ride that raises funds to provide breast cancer support. Bike routes range up to 100 miles. Depending on the fundraising package you choose, travel, food, bike transport and lodging expenses for the event may be covered. Network of Strength will provide you with cycling guidance and fundraising support.  

Training For A Charity Ride: Whether you choose to participate over 50 miles or 100 miles you’ll need to put in a few training rides to make sure that you can go the distance. The first thing to make sure of is that your bike is up to the job. It needs to be fully functional and fitted to your stature. Over the weeks leading up to the ride, try and fit in two or three training rides per week, gradually building the mileage that you cover from week to week. Have one longer ride and one or two shorter rides. Make sure you give yourself sufficient time to build up your long ride mileage to at least three quarters of that you’ll be covering on the big day. 

You should aim to increase the distance of your long ride by about 10 to 20 percent per week and you'll need to start with a distance that you are comfortable with but stretches you slightly. Don’t worry if you can only fit in one ride. You could try substituting the other missed rides by taking a brisk walk or a run. During the week leading up to the charity ride, you should ease down on your training rides. Aim to reduce your mileage by 50 percent over the previous week and you’ll feel fresh and raring to go come the big day.

Choosing A Bike: Once you've made the decision to join a ride, make sure you have the right bike for the task. Most charity riding events are on paved roads so it is reccomended to have a good quality road bike for optimum ease in encountering the hills and distances on the road. I would not choose a mountain bike simply for the fact that the wide knobby tires are meant to provide extra grip on rough terrain but will cause a drag on paved roads. A mountain bike will also take too much out of you during a distance ride. 

Road bikes have thinner tires that offer less rolling resistance and a more aerodynamic cycling position that will see you through the distance in half the time. For a great entry level road bike that is easy on your wallet, check out Schwinn's top selling Road Bike. Whatever bike you plan to use, it is a good idea to use the same bike for all your training rides. Don't forget to bring a spare tube and a tire pump. Hopefully you wont need them but you never know. And most important… enjoy yourself!

To see and learn more about charity rides do a google search on charity bike rides to find events in your desired location.

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