Couch to Fondo in Five Easy(ish) Steps


It’s almost May 1. You kept telling yourself you were going to ride in the Saint Francis Tulsa Tough Fondo this year. In between the new season of Ozark and delicious snacks (the Girl Scouts are in a global-wide conspiracy with the Elastic Waistband Industry with those cookies. Convince me otherwise!), you have not done much in the way of getting ready for riding your Fondo. 

We got you, fam. 

We recently chatted with Dr. David Brennan of the OU Center of Exercise and Sports Medicine. He has his Ph.D. in Health and Human Performance. And he is also the Official Trumpeter of Cry Baby Hill. We asked him if it was too late to do one of the Fondos offered by Saint Francis Tulsa Tough.

Dr. Brennan says just about anyone can do it, provided they get the okay from their primary care physician if they are not accustomed to physical activity. He offered some tips and a schedule to get your body (and mind) Fondo ready!
1. Pick the short Fondo offerings if you did not ride your bike over the winter.
2. Check your equipment (air in your tires, brakes, chain, helmet). Your bike may be in worse shape than you! Especially if you’ve been feeding it Girl Scout Cookies instead of chain lube.
3. Depending on your fitness level, get at least two easy (60-70% of your maximum ability) rides of 45-60 minutes and one long ride per week (see table below for progression). Don’t get down on yourself if your first ride is a dumpster fire. The first ride is as bad as it gets. Promise. 
4. Include some hills on at least one ride per week; you may want to attempt some hill repetitions on your favorite hill 2-3 weeks before Saint Francis Tulsa Tough. 
5. Get a cycling buddy to help hold you accountable and it also makes those miles go by easier too! Or follow the Ride Alert app to find rides suited to your ability. 

Long Ride Progression Schedule

                     37-mile Fondo         40-mile Fondo

Week 1.                                 20                                            25
Week 2.                                  25                                           30
Week 3.                                  30                                           35
Week 4.                                  35                                           38
Week 5.                                  37                                           40      

Maybe the most important thing Dr. Brennan adds is his parting thought: 

Have fun!

Ready to start rolling? 
Register now and check out the 2022 Gran Fondo maps and select your distance: 
  • Piccolo - 40 miles on Saturday or 37 miles on Sunday
  • Medio - 72 miles on Saturday or 68 miles on Sunday
  • Gran - 104 miles on Saturday

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