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(This is part 2 of a series. If you haven’t read part 1 on training for 12 races, click here.)

Assuming you have completed a 12 hour race and everything went smoothly, you may be looking for something more challenging. Logically, the next step up would be a 24 hour time trial.

The best way I’ve found to train for these mega-races is to use a 12 hour event placed early in the racing season as a stepping stone to the next level. If you recall, in the previous article our training regiment was broken into 3 parts: base period, peaking, and tapering. Because a 24 hour time trial will likely be your main race for the year, you’ll need to incorporate your 12 hour training and subsequent race into the base period.


No matter how many miles you log in the base period, you’ll still need some time to recover after a 12 hour event. This causes the peaking period to be extended to about 3 months.

To put the amount of distance you will be covering, know that averaging a speed of 18mph, with only an hour-and-a-half off the bike, means you could ride a little over 400 miles in 24 hours. Our previous goal for the peaking period was to ride 80% of your projected mileage in one sitting a few weeks before the race. But since that ruling would now require you to ride almost 18 hours in one sitting, I recommend reducing the goal to 40%. This means you’ll never have to ride longer than 9 hours (160 miles) on your long rides. If however you have the time to ride longer, never ride more than 250 miles in one day.

These extended rides mean that at least two other workouts of the week should consist of short speed interval training and a middle distance tempo ride. Middle length rides are 50-100 miles long and a few MPH faster than your projected race pace.


Again, start easing off the distance two weeks before the race. In the first week, just do some short interval workouts, a 50 mile tempo ride, and a century on the weekend. Then in the second week, only do a couple easy 1.5 – 2 hour rides and rest on the remaining days.

And of course follow the same race day and carbo-loading guidelines previously stated.

Kyle Beck
Blogger, Athlete
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