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Ring of Kerry cycle

  • 26-06-2023 10:47am
    Registered Users Posts: 21

    Anybody doing the Ring of Kerry charity cycle next weekend? Fingers crossed the weather settles a bit!

    I’ve been cycling away although probably not as consistently as I should have been so hoping I’ve done enough! Anybody got any tips or advice for the next few days in the lead up to it/morning of the cycle even? Would really appreciate if people have words of wisdom (what to do in terms of cycling this week, other exercise/stretching, nutrition, anything else) for best preparation at this stage.



  • Registered Users Posts: 6,372 ✭✭✭iwillhtfu

    Depending on your level of fitness there's not really a whole lot of prep required. It's just a long day in the saddle and it'll be all the longer if it's a windy day. Best prep would be to treat your week as normal, eat well and get a few early nights to give the body a rest.

    On the day from memory there's a small few exhibition tents to browse through but nothing I'd be getting there early for.

    If you manage to get a nice day it's a nice cycle. Enjoy.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,042 ✭✭✭mcburns07

    Doing it myself, only been cycling 6 weeks and it's 60km longer than my furthest cycle... but i'm used to doing my cycles solo so should be fine hopefully!

    Planning to get going around 6:30 with one of my mates, avoid the crowds a bit and get it done reasonably early in the day.

    There isn't much you can do at this stage so probably better off having a light week exercise wise to ensure you're well rested. And as above eat well this week, get plenty of sleep, stay hydrated. Some stretching / mobility work every day is definitely a good idea too.

    Definitely pace yourself, better to finish strong if you have the legs than struggle through to the end.

  • Registered Users Posts: 14,264 ✭✭✭✭retalivity

    stay in with a crowd for as long as possible, much easier to be carried around, especially if its windy. I did it last year, it had fairly thinned out by the time we got to sneem and loads of people took an unoffical stop, so the lonely drag to kenmare was the hardest part! The climbs at the end arent too bad, steady without being too steep, just pace yourself, stay hydrated and try to enjoy it!

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Don't do anything different to what you normally do.

    No new food on the day (only use gels if you've trained with then), no last minute changes to bike set-up.

    The hay should be in the barn so nothing you do in terms of cycling will make much of a difference at this stage.

    Make sure the bike is in good working order.

    Clean and lube the chain.

    Make sure you have two spare tubes, a pump and you know how to change a puncture.

    Put all your gear out the night before, starting from your feet up.

    Sort out your set-up for transporting bike and make sure it works well in advance.

    Set out the food you'll need for the day and make sure it all fits in your pockets.

    Fill your bottles the night before and have them in the fridge.

    Give yourself extra time to get to your destination in the morning as it will be busy.

    Make sure you know where you are parking your car.

    Agree on a strategy with anyone riding with - climb at own pace and regroup at the top of hills etc. Stick to it.

    Plan when you are going to stop for food and to fill bottles agree with anyone you are riding with in advance.

    Strongly recommend riding the hills at your own pace and rhythm.

    Try and find groups to share the work with.

    Share the work and take a turn at the front.

    If you are not comfortable riding in a group back off as it can be intimidating and you could cause problems through inexperience.

    Eat and drink more than you think you need to and always before you feel hungry or thirsty.

    Don't get carried away at the start and don't burn any matches early on.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,261 ✭✭✭saccades

    As it's normally longer than a regular ride (but the easiest 170km I've ever done), make sense to have a system for your jersey.

    As I'm right handed, right rear pocket is food.

    Left rear pocket is phone & car fob in a zip lock bag. Allows me to put wrappers & banana peel in there as I go.

    Middle rear is over sleeves/gilet.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 238 ✭✭vintcerf

    rok weather forecast is looking great, have fun!

  • Registered Users Posts: 21 tbo1

    Thank you all so much for those really helpful tips and advice, some very sensible points. I’m glad I asked now!

    I’ve been mostly cycling alone for training so at least on the day of the RoK I’ll have company and shelter for a lot of it.

    Looking forward to it now and yes the weather looks promising so far anyway 🤞

    Hope everybody who’s signed up here enjoys the day and safe trip to all.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,095 ✭✭✭RikkFlair

    Did it last year for first time and despite it being 50k longer than any cycle I previously did (Ring of Clare), it was much easier than expected, even taking into account the shite weather. I did a 100k training ride last week and really didnt eat or drink enough and suffered badly towards the end, the wall was hit 😆 So I guess I will take my own advice and HYDRATE EARLY AND OFTEN!

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    And eat more than you think you need to. Your body will thank you in the final 50k.

  • Registered Users Posts: 43 spudpicker2022

    couldn't agree more especially with "And eat more than you think you need to. Your body will thank you in the final 50k."

    be sure to eat often and keep the carbs topped up - this is so vital and can often get overlook on the day due to distractions

    only item i would add is if you take salt tablets, consider taking one the day before to top up ahead of the event (and help avoid any cramping!)

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,056 ✭✭✭Technophobe

    Stop and have a nice pint (or coffee if not a drinker) along the's a day to be enjoyed not endured...

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,529 ✭✭✭Seadin

    My advice would be put a few granula bars in your Jersey and keep chewing away as you cycle or whatever works for you and don't try nothing new, only some thing that works for you and you know won't give you an upset stomach. Frequently keeping on top of your energy stores will help later in the cycle when you have 120km + on the legs, it will help for definite. Keep hydrated as well, 2 bottles and aim to top up your bottles at the main stops.

    Also bring 2-3 spare tubes, pump, tyre levers and few co2 cartridges, and a pocket multi tool, you could be waiting along time for service if you get a mechanical. At least if you have the stuff and you can't fix it, you will always get some passerby to help out ( like myself:-))

    Also check your bike out, make sure tyres,brakes and gears are working properly. If anything isn't right get it fixed in advance of the day. ( Not the day before).

    Keep your legs ticking over the days coming up to the cycle. No long cycles necessary but definitely go on 1-2 shorter spins (30km) this week, it will prime the legs on the day. No need to overdo it as it's too late now for any further fitness gains

    Most importantly if it's overcast make sure you bring suncream, ( small tub) if you are subject to burning like me as I have fair skin. Easy to get caught out on a dry overcast day. It goes without saying if it's sunny and hot on the day.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    You can drink the pints after you're done. You're inviting cramp or worse going to cause an accident by drinking even close to the finish. Always a couple of heroes every year at this for their Instagram.

  • Registered Users Posts: 307 ✭✭useeme

    I have done the ROK a few times and I’m looking forward to doing it again this Saturday.

    My tips:

    Look at it as three 50 - 60 km spins.

    1: Killarney to Caherciveen.

    2: Caherciveen to Sneem

    3: Sneem to Killarney

    Pace yourself and conserve all your energy for the last third.

    There are two climbs, Coomiska and Molls Gap. Be alert and take it handy on both descents, particularity on Molls Gap.

    It’s a leisure cycle, where participants are all ages, all sizes, all abilities on all types of bikes from all over the place.

    In recent years there have been less and less cycling club’s participating, which makes it more enjoyable (i.e. no cycling clubs charging by in a train shouting at every one to get out of the way!)

    There are loads of places to eat & drink along the route in addition to the official food stops. You won’t run out of food or water.

    There are nearly as many volunteers are there are participants, everyone is in good form, and all have their own stories to share.

    It’s a great day out on a stunning route.

    Stay on the left, stay on the left & stay on the left!

    I normally start at 5 am, (first light) and there would be 100’s already out. At that hour the route not is that crowded.

    I takes me about 12 hours to complete the route. This includes 3 - 4 hours of leisurely stops for meals, enjoying the scenery, etc.

    Enjoy and savor every minute of it, Its one of the best days of the year on the saddle.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,261 ✭✭✭saccades

    The ladies leap descent is ace if you are far enough ahead, you can properly cut apexes taking racing lines as the road is closed. 😍

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,372 ✭✭✭iwillhtfu

    Does that lady still open her house to participants on the road to sneem I think it was? I recall it being thronged with cyclists getting water and using the bathroom 🤣

  • Registered Users Posts: 21 tbo1

    I think they might even be on the route map - Breens House, near Sneem?! I think its brilliant she opens her house every year 😀

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,372 ✭✭✭iwillhtfu

    Yeah it's great, really embodies what the spin is about. The place is always jammers with lads drinking cups of tea and all. 🤣

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,486 ✭✭✭Masala

    What kind of numbers are they expecting?. I remember doing it with 11,000 +++. Good memories…….

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,529 ✭✭✭Seadin

    I heard about 4,000 but will probably be a bit above that.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,529 ✭✭✭Seadin

    Why would you bother though? If you want to race go elsewhere, the ROK charity cycle is not meant to be for racing.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,975 ✭✭✭cletus

    Racing lines are not the same as racing. Going fast downhill is fun. Ask any kid with a bicycle

  • Registered Users Posts: 85 ✭✭DJB030244

    Yep exactly , you are allowed have fun and go fast without a race …it’s not all or nothing.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,056 ✭✭✭Technophobe

    Where to start 🤔

    Actually I won't.. enjoy your day, that's the main thing..

  • Registered Users Posts: 11 AidanParkes

    I always try to get into a charity event and this is no exception. At this event, you can find many acquaintances

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Yes she does.

    I recall a very posh plonker giving out to her one year because she had run out of coffee and being disgusted at the thought of drinking tea.

    He was fairly put in his place by a local rider. Good times.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    I didn't mean to have a go. I just don't think drinking pints - even if you meant it tongue in cheek - is a good idea with so many inexperienced cyclists on the road. Even the most experienced cyclists need their wits about you for the descent into Moll's Gap and I couldn't imagine doing it with even one pint on board. And, yes, enjoying the day is the main part.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,529 ✭✭✭Seadin

    Not everyone can ride a bike downhill at speed with confidence and full control. Just remember the pros can get it wrong as well.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,529 ✭✭✭Seadin

    Thats very sensible down a descent when there are quite a number of other cyclists of all abilities using the road.

    I love descending off molls gap btw but I'm also respectful of other cyclists around me some who may be inexperienced. I will descent down safely for the day that's in it. Everyone deserves to get back safely.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,771 ✭✭✭Large bottle small glass

    I haven't done ROK in maybe 10 years but it is a really wonderful event.

    No other cycle gets within an asses road in terms of numbers, especially the very occasional cyclists who turn up for this event and no other.

    I don't think I've ever had a drink on it, but have often had a pint on longer and harder events.

    In Germany Raddler is a mix of beer/lemonade consumed in particular by cyclists on long events.

    When crossing the Basque country by bike in 2015 I noted construction works all had beer at lunchtime when working in the heat.

    Enjoy the day