The following is just a comparison of some boring stats from my 2011 rides. Even I think the resulting stats and the short discussion boring. This is so boring that I might delete the post even after publication -- if I bother to publish. You have been warned.
Cycling buddy Ricochet sometimes cracks me up.
Between Christmas and New Year's, he mentioned that he'd figured out that a 1200 km Grand Randonnee was essentially a four day ride, and since he wanted to complete at least one of those, maybe he neede to do some cycling on 4-consecutive-days as practice. Sounds like a good idea to me.
In another conversation he expressed ... I guess the word would be ... amazement ... that I was planning so much consecutive riding from just before Christmas through New Year's Day. I didn't think it was so much -- certainly it was less than at then end of 2009.
But that got me to wondering ... how much cycling do I do on consecutive days?
I know that the most days I've ridden consecutively was in 2010 when I did the Blue Ridge Parkway, north-to-south, with Lt. Dave and his family ... 7 days; but other than that ... ? I decided to do a little magic with my 2011 Excel cycling log, and see out what I had done.
All it took was a little jiggering things around to use existing auto-generated reports to generate the following, somewhat informative, although boring, summaries.
First, total cycling in 2011, sorted by day of the week. (Note that the 400-km brevet and the 600-km brevet are entirely included in Saturday stats -- not split between Saturday and Sunday.)
|All rides||# rides||miles||Hours||mph||m. / r.|
That chart certainly indicates that I did the "lions share" of my cycling on the weekends. 71% of my total rides, 79% of my total miles and 79% of my total time in the saddle were done on Saturday or Sunday. Add in the (mostly) Friday afternoon short rides, and its 81% of the rides and 82% of the miles and time on the Friday to Sunday weekends.
Next, consecutive days, sorted by day of the week.
|consec rides||# rides||miles||Hours||mph||m. / r.|
The above chart includes the data from 23 back-to-back "events", 9 "triple-events" and 2 "quads". There were no times last year that I rode more than four days consecutively -- and I only did that twice.
The "consecutive days" still add up to 72% of my rides and 68% of my miles and time-in-the-saddle. It is interesting to note that the avg pace of the consecutive-rides was the same as the avg pace of all rides. The avg distance of the consecutive days was within 6% of the avg distance for all rides -- close enough, I think, to think of them as "the same".
No chart is shown for this, but if one removes the Friday rides from all the ddata / charts, the avg pace remains at 15.0 mph (to the nearest tenth-of-a-mile), and although removing those "short" Fridays would bump-up the avg distance shown in each of the above charts (and also the following one), the relative relationships remain almost exactly the same.
Leaving the non-consecutive riding.
|non-consecutive||# rides||miles||Hours||mph||m. / r.|
The above chart may be a bit skewed because I only did one 300-km, one 400-km and one 600-km ride last year, and those three rides are included immediately above. Removing those three rides would give:
|remove 3, 4 + 6||# rides||miles||Hours||mph||m. / r.|
Removing the three longer brevets brings the avg distance for the non-consecutive rides into alignment with the earlier two charts, and avg pace of those "stand-alone" rides does pop-up a bit -- a "whopping" 1.4% -- I think it safe to ignore the inclusion / exclusion of those 3 rides for comparison purposes.
On average, I rode almost the same pace regardless of whether I had ridden the day before, or if I was going to ride the next day.
Of course, if I had actually done any intentionally short, fast rides targetting bettering my speed ... maybe the results would look considerably different.
Based on the above: What advice can I share with Robert regarding the value of riding multiple days in a row? Answer: I don't know; probably nothing; my results are probably only an indication of my riding style / ability.
I can segment the consecutive-rides data by "1st-day", "2nd-day", etc.. That may show something more interesting than what I got from looking at the above.
But I won't include those charts / discussion in this post.