One of the reasons I adore the Tour de France is the physical intensity of the tour (and the other major tours). I don’t think Americans realize how insane these endurance tours are. What these cyclists go through.
I read this awesome article, titled “How do cyclists physically survive the Tour de France? We asked a physiologist and former pro rider”
People are so quick to be like ‘oh well they dope’. Uhmmmmmmmmmm ok buddy. Yeah, they do. It sucks. But it’s not like you or I can just ‘the dope’ or whatever, and then go bike a Tour de France in competitive mode. In fact, to even just bike the ROUTE itself, no tour, just casual, one stage per day, “Most people take about six to eight months of continuous coached training to get there. … And anyone could accomplish that distance if they have enough motivation and enough food.”
More choice bits from the article (which you should read):
- There might be BEET JUICE in their drink bottles! The dietary part of the article is fascinating to me
- The riders can’t just become a couch potato right after the tour. They actually have to still work out over the next few weeks to wean their bodies from increased the blood flow/rigor it got used to
- Riders have a very high risk for lousy bone density and osteoporosis and MUST have an off season in order to regain bone density
I’ll spare ya’ll the picture of the giant veiny post tour legs.