Building a Better Road CyclistEven before $4-a-gallon petrol, cycling was on the rise in the U.S. (Americans bought 18.2 million bicycles in 2007.) The fastest growing group of hammerheads: road racers. Lifecycle Adventures, the riding specialist, has designed a trip for these competitive-cyclists-in-the-making that’s equally focused on fitness goals and training techniques. Teaming up with the country’s best coaches, the San Francisco–based outfitter devises custom thigh-burning itineraries through the vineyards and river valleys of Napa and Sonoma. Its coaches consult with clients pre-ride and assess each cyclist’s goals (anything from a first century to a top-half finish in the Tour de California). Riders can pound out five-mile climbs on 1,900-foot Howell Mountain and, come afternoon, cruise 30 miles along rolling Silverado Trail road, enjoying the same sun and even-keeled temps (rarely does it dip below 50 degrees) that lure many pros to live and train here. Throughout the trip, Lifestyle’s coaches review data from the bike’s power meter (which measures speed, cadence, and energy output) to optimize performance and provide advice on nutrition and bike handling.
Outfitter: Lifecycle Adventures; lifecycleadventures.com
Length: 6 days
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