“A run a day keeps the doctor away”

…and puts a smile on my face. Being active means feeling alive to me. Sport is adventure and meeting great people through a shared hobby and running, MTB and swimming get’s me places I otherwise wouldn’t get to see. Get inspired.

11 Juli 2015

Challenge Roth – Bike Course Review

„Race the Legend“ is the motto of Challenge Roth 2015 and a legend it is. So we took the Shiv out and gave the 2 loop bike course a close look. It’s said to be a fast course in a beautiful rural setting. 95km later here is what we saw.

Once you exit the Main-Donau-Kanal it is a quick transition to grab your bike and out onto the bike course. You have a gentle climb to start with and it is suggested to take your nutrition in as quickly as you can as you are making a 90 degree left hand turn towards Rothsee after just a couple of hundred meters and from there you are picking up the pace for the next kilometer and a half.

DANGER: around the 2km mark is the first time you need to pay serious attention. In a fairly fast, slightly downhill turn you are hitting 3 cracks across the road as you are riding past the the impressive floodgate of the Main-Donau-Kanal.

The first 13 kilometers are very lightly but gradually uphill. So don’t get too excited and if you are riding with a power meter monitor it closely. You don’t wanna push too hard that early in the race.

At kilometer 13.5 you hit the first climb which is about 700 meters long. Let the others go here. You will see a lot of athletes pushing too hard here already and they will pay for it later as there is more fun awaiting on the mostly rolling bike course.

Only 3 kilometers after finishing the first climb you are hitting the next one at km 17.5 which is more or less the same length as the one before…

…but the fun doesn’t start until you get into the town of Greding. After entering the town in a nice little downhill section you make a right hand turn and roughly 150 meters later another one straight into a steep, steep climb. Shift down before that turn and prepare to climb a little for the next 700 meters but be aware: It doesn’t stop there. It evens out a little but yet you keep riding uphill for a total of almost 4km with only a very short flat bit in between.

From here on you continue on a nicely rolling course and then enter a beautiful downhill section which leads you partially through the woods where you can find some shade on a hot day out there. DANGER: be aware of the turns in this downhill sections. There is hay stacks put up in the turns for a good reason. Control yourself and enjoy the downhill as a bit of recovery rather than pushing too hard and risking everything in those turns.

At KM 62 you hit another 2 little climbs which seem fairly easy after riding the ones before and then at KM 69 the fun begins. You have a short and fun climb as a little preview of what to expect from Solarer Hill. This climb is just before entering the town of Hilpoltstein and every spectator that is not at Solarer Hill is putting up shop there to scream and shout you up this hill. If you think this is awesome then you will love Solarer Hill 1km later.

SOLARER HILL: Climb the legend within the legend. If you have not ridden Solarer Hill on race day yet forget everything you think you know about Solarer Hill. This climb will make you forget all your suffering out there and will exceed all your expectations. Don’t even dream about ‚hammering‘ this hill up. There is no passing other athletes anyways as spectators are at least as nuts (in the best way) as they are at Alp d’Huez. Enjoy and don’t push.

From there is is nice and rolling and you will pass some of our highlights on the ‚Challenge Roth Top10 Must do Things‘ list on the last klicks before heading into loop 2 to enjoy the fun all over again.

As you finish loop 2 at the Biermeile – one of the many, many hotspots along the course – you are not heading left in Eckersmühlen as before but go on straight for another 3.5km into T2.

The course has about 700 meters of climbing per loop and your top speeds will range somewhere between 60-75km/h depending on how hard you push the pace!

Time to run! Enjoy race day and be awesome!

DATE TIME!

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Complete Garmin Profile: https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/828948581

RIDER: Till Schenk, 174kg, 182cm tall.

BIKE: Specialized Shiv Pro, Ceramic Speed upgrade, Roval wheels.

POWER METER: Power2Max

BIKE COMPUTER: Garmin 920

4 Juli 2015

Ironman Frankfurt – Bike Course Review

The Ironman European Championships in Frankfurt are showing one of the strongest fields in it’s history. Ironman World Champion Sebastian Kienle, Ironman World Champion Frederik van Lierde, Olympic Gold Medalist Jan Frodeno on the mens side alone.

But also for all the age groupers Ironman Frankfurt will most likely be the highlight of the year. With temperatures expected to be a scorching 40 Celsius the bike course can make the difference between blowing up or bringing it to the finish line.

We went out, checked the course, shot you a quick video and are ready to give you some hinters.

Below you will also find some ideas on what the loop looks like, total ascent, top speeds and so on.

 

„The bike course starts with an easy and perfect 13Km warm up from Langener Waldsee, where the swim takes place, to the ‚Alte Brücke‘ in Frankfurt. From there you start into one of 2 loops to finish the remaining 167Km. For another roughly 11Km it is pretty straight forward and all you have to do is get your legs spinning, the nutrition in and set yourself up for the first climb which you hit at roughly Km24. Take it easy here. It is only the first out of 3 on each loop.

About 7km later around the 31Km mark you hit some cobblestone roads – make sure to tighten those bottles and everything you have attached to your bike. It is about 800 meters of Paris-Roubaix feeling.

Only 3km later you hit climb number 2. Again there is still a long way to go. So take it easy and let the people around you pass you if you feel they are pushing too hard.

From there on it is a long way of rolling hills, long easy to ride decents and solid riding. Be aware of the road conditions and slightly more narrow turns in the many small villages you are passing.

With roughly 6Km to go on each lap you are hitting climb number 3. Heartbreak Hill. From the bottom it doesn’t look like much but trust us – it hurts. Not only on the last but on the first lap already. Once you made it to the top it is an easy, slightly downhill ride back to loop number 2 or transition.

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Full Garmin Connect Link: https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/822832838

Bike used: Specialized Shiv Pro with Ceramic Speed upgrade, Rotor Rings (54/42) and a Garmin Edge 1000.

Rider: 183 tall and roughly 74KG in weight.

This was a group ride – so the data does not exactly present what it would look like for a single rider in terms of power and speed.

27 Juni 2015

Chiemsee Triathlon – Bike Course Review

Another weekend another race. Placed in the beautiful Bavarian area South of Munich, Chiemsee Triathlon offers one of the most beautiful bike courses in Germany if not Europe.

A rolling 2 loop course with 600 meter ascent, speedy sections with up to 75km/h and a very rewarding and fast final 9km each loop with breathtaking view at the Alps and the Chiemsee.

The course is taking you through small forests, unique Bavarian villages and beautiful countryside along herds of cows and flock of chicken!

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THE COURSE:

You start off with an easy 9km to warm up and find a good rhythm. At KM 3 it’s time to briefly focus as the course takes you off the road and through a pedestrian passing under the road. This is a spot where you wanna place yourself in the front of your pack so you don’t get slowed down as the passing narrows.

At KM 9 you hit your first slightly longer hill. This is one of probably 2-3 hills where I would stay calm, shift down to the small chainring and take it easy for about 300 meters. After that is is back into the aero bars and the happy hammering continues and almost all other hills are worth keeping the big chainring on and briefly get out of the saddle.

Around KM 13 you hit one of 2 turns where you should slow done a bit and right after the turn which comes in the beginning of a downhill section you hit a short climb. This is a great spot to drop anybody drafting on you. Quick push over the hill and the competition is dropped.

Km 22 is the only challenging inner city bit with 3 fast turns following each other. Go easy – you won’t win the race here.

What follows is a nice little rolling section that allows for a good push and nice rhythm and as soon as you hit KM 33 you are golden. From there you are pampered with 2 arcade style downhill sections and slight turns that allow you to stay on the aerobats. All in the setting of the Alps and the Chiemsee right in front of you. Those last 9KM are FAST.

The last tricky bit is about 1KM before transition / lap 2. A little bridge with a right hand turn in a downhill section into town. Don’t throw your race away here.

THE BIKE / WEAPON OF CHOICE: 

Specialized Shiv Pro, Roval 60 wheels, Ceramic Speed complete bike upgrade, Power2Max powermeter, Garmin Edge 1000, Xlab Torpedo, Specialized S-Works road shoes.

Enjoy and share your race experience with us afterwards.

19 Juni 2015

Ironman 70.3 Luxembourg – Bike Course Review

Ironman 70.3 Luxembourg is a beauty but not an easy or especially fast bike course.

With roughly 560 meters of climbing (compared to 800 mentioned on the Ironman website) it doesn’t sound like the most challenging course but taking into consideration that the first 36km and last 12km have barely any elevation gain at all you end up with about 560 meters on the 40km long middle section of the bike course.

You start out on smooth and fast asphalt along the river Mosel for the first 20km before hitting the turnaround point. The perfect start to get into your rhythm and ensure a good energy take in after the swim. On a normal day you will have a slight tailwind going towards Grevenmacher.

After the turnaround it is another 16km back before making a 180 turn straight into one of the steepest climbs on the bike course which surprisingly rides fairly smooth. From there on it is an up and down for a little before hitting the longest climb of the bike course. After that it is a rolling course with some short fast sections with speeds up to 65-70km/h before hitting the 70km mark.

At the 70km awaits one of the nastiest bits of the course. A roughly 1-1.5km long stretch along a beautiful alley that looks like it’s barely climbing but feels like somebody it pulling your rear break. When hitting the river again around the 77-78km mark it is a flat ride back home into T2.

Overall there is a few spots where you are facing head on winds but nothing too strong and other than a few short bits between km 50 and 70 as well as the first few kilometre when hitting the Mosel again on the way to T2 the asphalt is mostly very smooth and easy to ride.

Definitely a bike course for a fast choice of tires and tubes.

Weapon of choice for this review was the Specialized Shiv with Ceramic Speed upgrade, Power2Max power meter and a set of Rotor Rings 54/42 with 11/28 Ultegra cassette.

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