- British University and Colleges Sport (BUCS) offers a hill climb, three time trials (10mile, 25mile and a 3 up TTT), a road race and criterium championshop, and an Olympic Distance Triathlon. BUCS entry fees are paid for by the UCL Union and are therefore free to Racing members. See http://www.bucs.org.uk/event_calendar.asp?section=10§ionTitle=Events
- Sportives (Fred Whitton etc. see -https://www.britishcycling.org.uk/events?zuv_bc_discipline_filter_id=5)
- Local time trials (these can be found at http://www.cyclingtimetrials.org.uk)
- British Cycling run events are where the majority of racing is done. Criterium races occur year round, and Time Trials when the weather starts getting better. UCLUCC is a British Cycling Affiliated Club and therefore with a British Cycling Race License https://www.britishcycling.org.uk/membership you can represent UCLUCC in all BC Criteriums and Road Races.
- Endurance rides
- Intervals (hills and flats)
- Chaingang rides.
These three are not mutually exclusive- cyclists tend to like to race up the hills, even on a longer slower ride. Convention dictates that over the winter you put in base miles- longer slower rides. This doesn't mean however that is all the cycling you can do. As the nights draw shorter, convenience nudges you towards shorter harder rides. We will look to offer 3 rides a week:
- A long group ride on Saturday morning (good chance to get to know everyone, whilst also good for cycling)
- A tough chaingang style session around Regents Park on a Wednesday Afternoon
- A 'hillier' ride (not just swains lane) of roughly 1 - 2 hours with an aim of getting in good climbing practice.
This schedule is subject to change later in the year when the demands for racing fitness change somewhat
You must take on energy when riding. As you ride for an hour and a half or more, the effects of nutrition become much more noticeable. For shorter harder rides hydration will be the main factor. A rough guide of nutrition (assuming you have a good meal before the ride) :
- Anything up to an hour- no real benefit in taking in energy products. Hydration is key- They make hydration tablets which help replenish body salts, but for those on a budget water is fine!
- 1-2 hours: will vary on the intensity of the ride- 90 minutes is often quoted as the max time to exercise without taking in any energy, however a very leisurely 2 hour ride should be fine.
- 2+ hours: Remain well hydrated, but look to consume roughly 90g/hour of carbohydrates for max output
Forms of energy:
- 'Natural'- Pasta, bread, bananas, rice, cereal bars etc. On the whole this will be the cheapest option. Look for carb high foods that you can eat and digest easily whilst exercising
- 'Energy drinks'- Anyone caught drinking Lucozade Zero will be shot. Drinks offer an easy to digest option, a tub of energy powder will be a worthwhile investment
- 'Energy gels'- they don't taste too bad really, they are pricy though. Gels offer a remarkable convenience, and as they are designed purely for this purpose they will provide a good source of energy. Caffeinated gels are an option- caffeine is a stimulant you will notice, however caffeine gels aren't dissimilar to what I imagine vomit tastes like.
- 'Energy Bars'- similar to gels in design, but tend to be much nicer. For harder rides solid food tends to be a bit questionable, but bars are a great source of energy on longer rides.
It will take lots of experimenting for you to decide what is best for you. Energy products come at a price, and excessive use (5 hours or more) tends to leave its mark in the bottom of the toilet (if you're lucky). The best bet is to mix and match, however for harder sessions and racing energy products will often be the best option as they are intended for quick and easy absorption. Warning- you should never feel hungry or 'empty' on a ride, this would imply you have passed a point of no return.
A healthy bike is a happy bike. Everyone should know at least how to fix a puncture, and carry the appropriate tools for that on any ride. Whilst maintenance may not seem an amazingly fun prospect it will in the long run save you a lot of money. General tips:
- Keep tyres pumped up (road bikes up to 115 120) at least once a week
- Keep the drive train clean- degreaser/ chain cleaner is good. Over a winter once every 5 rides should suffice. Warm soapy water fixes almost anything cycle related. Keep your chain clean and get rid of any gunk (jockey wheels tend to be the most affected) This will improve shifting aswell as longterm maintenance.
- Keep moving parts oiled- For ease do this after you have cleaned your drive train. This prevents rust and retarded motion of your moving parts.
- Keep external bolts tight- from time to time just check nothing is about to unscrew and fall off.
- Keep your frame clean- prevents rust, but pride mainly. Everyone likes a nice clean bike
Signs of wear:
- Tyres- do they look bald? are you getting lots of punctures?
- Chain- does it look saggy? Are you gears slipping at the back?
- Cassette- do your teeth now look like sharks fins? gear slippage?
- Brake pads- does braking feel scratchy and less efficent? are you starting to get scratches on your rims?
- Wheels- are they running true? do your brakes rub slightly on certain points of rotation.
- Cables- Do brakes feel spongey? gear changes not really doing much?
Membership gets you the discount at our partner bike shop, subsidised club kit, refunds on travel to BUCS events and free BUCS race entry.
Feel free to get in touch with any of committee members or bike logic mechanics if you have any issues