Ultracycling: challenge Omar Di Felice on Strava

When it comes to cycling, especially in the case of specialties such as the stopwatch, we are all led to consider elements such as time, rigor, and precision. Let's try to think if to all of this we added the emotional component, if cycling meant going beyond our limits, not only the physical but atmospheric and geographical. All of this can be summed up in a single word: ultracycling.

This cycling speciality could be one of the extreme sports, but above all it represents a different form of cycling where one runs for oneself but above all for the experience and the landscape that the race course offers. What really characterizes this specialty, in fact, is the emotional impact of racing and running becomes almost an adventure.

Compared to the traditional form of cycling the distances are longer, the minimum duration of an ultracycling race is 12 hours but there can also be races of 24 and 48 hours. In ultracycling you compete with road bikes, mountain bikes and hand bikes on both roads and closed circuits and there are different categories:

  • Solitaire (it can be with or without a support car): the car, also known as the flagship, has the task of refreshing the athlete and assisting him but also that of dictating the timing of breaks;
  • Teams (with support car): are composed of 2 to 8 athletes depending on the mileage of the race. They are relay teams with a free race strategy or there are no minimum or maximum limits to the changes.
Since 2015 the first National Ultracycling Championship was born in Italy, formed by the union of two races already on the calendar, namely Race across Italy and D+ Ultracycling Dolomitica. At European level we find the Race across the Alps, the Race Around Slovenia, the Race Around Austria and the TorTour de Suisse. The most important ultracycling test is the RAAM - Race across America, a 5000 km test that crosses the state from the Atlantic coast to the Pacific Ocean.
Ultracycling as a lifestyle
Among the national champions of ultracycling the most adventurous and winning is definitely Omar Di Felice, a Roman cycling enthusiast since childhood. Starting from a small amateur team in the area, where he exhibited from the start, in 2005 he reached numerous prestigious placings in the main national and international big funds such as the Granfondo Internazionale Alpen Brevet in Switzerland, and starting his career. He has always had within him a passion for ultracycling and long distances.

Even when I raced in the conventional categories of cycling I was looking for the most kilometres, the most uphill routes, the route that would allow me to almost "get lost" in the meanders of my boundless passion.

What is the ideal type of training for those who are facing extreme challenges?

At the base there must be the ability to stay in the saddle for many hours, so it’s important to gradually lengthen your exits to understand, at least, if it is within your armoury to do the long distances. Obviously the rest is possible by everyone’s individual attitudes. From a more qualitative point of view, however, the specific workouts to train strength and other qualities, are roughly the same as those that take place in traditional cycling.
After the victory of Dolomitics24, the 24 hours on the road in a mountain environment in Italy, in the next few weeks will be put to the test "challenging" all members of the Technogym Cycling Club on Strava.

Technogym Cycling Club on Strava

Strava is the social network for sportsmen, specifically cyclists and runners. It is available in both desktop and mobile versions with an app that can be downloaded to your smartphone. With Strava you can monitor your athletic activity, processing your training in detail. The app lets you track your bike and race routes, track speed and duration, and share them with your contacts.

From the encounter between Strava and MyCycling, the Technogym Cycling Club was created, the first group on Strava dedicated to cycling. MyCycling owners will be able to share their training sessions, which will show the characteristic reference kpi (power, as well as km and duration) and the entire Technogym look and feel.

How to take part in Omar Di Felice's challenges on Strava?

  • You must have a Strava account;
  • Join the Technogym Cycling Club (the official group can be recognised thanks to the orange check in the profile previews), searching in the "Search Club" area of the app;
  • Enter the "events" area of the group;
  • Choose the challenge and join it;
  • Make sure to post comments about your business in the comments area and share your experiences with other users.

A stroll through Italy: the "Italy Unlimited 3500 km" challenge begins

All is ready for the challenge on Strava, Italy is the location chosen for the first challenge entitled "Italy Unlimited". A minimum number of kilometres will be given to overcome the various stages of the digital challenge. In this adventure Omar has crossed the beautiful country, passing through all the regions of Italy and the symbolic places of culture, art and history and cycling without interruptions for 3500 km in 9 days non-stop and with over 50,000 metres of altitude difference.

I wanted something to celebrate Italy, my country, in the year of the hundredth lap of Italy. For this reason I said to myself: "why not try on the same distance as the tour but in no-stop mode?

The challenge began in Rome, his hometown, descending to southern Italy until Reggio Calabria, where Omar Di Felice embarked for Sicily and then Sardinia continuing his adventure on the islands. Returning to the peninsula he crossed northern Italy until returning to Rome, the arrival point of his adventure.
The route has been studied with one main mission: to arrive in each region, making at least one passage in each of them. Obviously it was necessary to sacrifice some places in order not to risk lengthening the challenge too much compared to the total 3380 km. The most difficult point was on Etna, a third of the way up. Omar's solution was on pure concentration on the task ahead, thus finding the strength within himself to go further. He proposed this in particular to Strava users because a challenge that contemplates the achievement of a given altitude difference is a bit of a symbol of his activity that always includes many mountains to climb.

Advice for the challenge: always head over shoulders and prepare gradually. The extreme must be faced with the right enthusiasm but also with the right conscience.

How does MYCYCLING help with the preparation?
MYCYCLING and, more generally, indoor bike training, helps when performing specific exercises or when the weather conditions do not allow you to go onto the road. On the other hand, the repetitiveness of the movements confronts the individual's ability to face fatigue by concentrating on it. This is perhaps the most valuable training aspect for those who, like me, find themselves facing long challenges only with themselves.

Un post condiviso da Technogym (@technogym) in data:

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