As human beings we all like to push ourselves to the limit, and taking on a cycling challenge is a great way to do that while having fun and raising money for charity at the same time. But there are a few key things you need to know before lining up on the start line.
Find an event to suit your ability
This is one of the most crucial decisions in your charity cycling journey, choosing the event itself.
It’s important to assess the course itself, both in terms of terrain and distance and whether the timeframe you have to train for the event is a realistic prospect around your work, family and social life.
Once you have chosen your event you may have the option to take on shorter or longer routes within it. Whilst these typically can’t be changed it is important to find out whether you are able to swap to a shorter or longer distance if you have any injury setbacks during training.
Spread the word far and wide
Once you’ve chosen your challenge, it is time to tell your friends, family and work colleagues that you are doing it. Set up a fundraising page and tell your story - the more you share about your motivations for supporting Alzheimer’s Research UK, the more people will want to support you.
This will not only help push you to get out and train during those days when the weather isn’t pristine and your mind is telling you to take a break and chill on the sofa, but involving those who are close to you in your training, riding and fundraising journey along the way will mean you are more likely to complete the challenge and raise as much money as possible.
Train, fuel and recover the right way
This may seem like a given to some people, but preparing for a cycling event isn’t just a case of riding your bike a few times beforehand, rocking up on the day and hoping for the best.
Set out a structured training plan, with different types of sessions that will help you on the big day. Ensuring you have a tried and tested hydration and nutrition strategy will be key to you getting around the course and more importantly enjoying the day itself.
If you aren’t used to a high volume of training week after week, it is vital to include rest days and recovery routines after each ride. This will ensure you don’t pick up any niggling injuries or illnesses that can do more harm than good in the long term.
Choose a cause that is close to your heart
Raising money for charity is a noble act, but if you are able to raise money for a charity which means a lot to you on a personal level then taking on a mega cycling event will matter all that more.
This will really help you when you are grinding up a climb on event day, training in the wind and rain or just wondering if you can conquer the miles the night before the event day. Having an end goal and a reason for why you are doing it means you will push yourself to take on and complete the ride.
Join the thousands of people cycling for Alzheimer’s Research UK, the UK’s leading dementia research charity dedicated to diagnosis, prevention, treatment and cure.
Sign up to an event and set up a fundraising page (opens in new tab) today.
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Founded in 1891, Cycling Weekly and its team of expert journalists brings cyclists in-depth reviews, extensive coverage of both professional and domestic racing, as well as fitness advice and 'brew a cuppa and put your feet up' features. Cycling Weekly serves its audience across a range of platforms, from good old-fashioned print to online journalism, and video.
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