Lauren is an ex-South African now happily living in Belgium. Her background for over thirty years has been in her own business in the creative and writing sphere. Lauren now writes passionately for ROUVY with her popular route reviews and engaging website content. Lauren is an avid and competitive road cyclist and mountain biker who, a few years ago, achieved several podium positions for her age category for National Championships and UCI World Masters Champs for road and, before that, in triathlon in the early 90s. Lauren has been using the ROUVY app year-round since 2016.
Organizers of the Grand Tours aim to plan the most challenging routes that push the riders to their limits, where a succession of brutal climbs with no rest in mountain stages and mountain-top finishes leave no doubts about who the winner is.
The exciting cycling Classics and monuments are Northern Europe's biggest and most famous one-day races. The pros overcome every obstacle they can that comes their way to keep going, and staying motivated to reach their goals and the finish line, experiencing success and defeat on their journey to victory.
Knowing that you can hit your goal distance on a route, a ROUVY event, or keep up with your riding mates on an outside ride can give you confidence. However, getting to that optimal and suitable fitness level can be challenging. With the proper training and consistency, it's pretty manageable. The key is knowing how to train in the appropriate zones and what routes and workouts to use during your precious pedal time. From here, this goal is more easily reachable, and the journey to that goal is more enjoyable.
Maximize the time available for a quality ride during your lunch break or when time is limited. Below are a variety of beautiful and iconic routes to get your riding under the belt in under an hour and simultaneously exploring unique places. We will be visiting the USA, UK, Switzerland and South Africa.
Lake Garda, in Northern Italy, is a spectacular location, surrounded by mountains, picturesque towns, roads, beaches, hills, and nature at its best. You can discover and explore many historical sites, from ancient ruins to castles, villas, caves, and islands. Therefore, Lake Garda is a place you should not miss, and you can ride the route on ROUVY virtually from home.
Alpe d'Huez is undeniably the world's most famous climb. With over 30 appearances in the Tour since 1952 and a regular stage mountain top finish since 1976, it is one that you have to do and get a taste of the suffering, pain and glory! While it is not the most challenging climb in the Tour, Alpe d'Huez is usually the grand finale to a long and gruelling Alpine stage, often including Col du Madeleine, La Croix de Fer and Glandon. Also, the experience of the journey of carving one's way up the mountain and not just the final destination to the top makes it unique: The countdown of the 21 hairpins, which, during the Tour, is lined with over a million spectators, makes this event magical, and the atmosphere pulsating.
The Col de la Croix de Fer and the Col du Granon are two brutal and challenging climbs that should go on every avid climber's bucket list of favourites to conquer and see how far one can test one's limits to the full. Approach these vicious ascents with a good fitness level, some endurance time in the saddle, fresh legs and adequate nutrition and fluids close at hand.
When it comes to tough cycling climbs, the French Alps are one of the best places to visit. The delight of breaking free from the drab moorings of everyday life, the joy of motion, the splendor of rolling past trees, rivers and lakes - and of course up climbs! Options of legendary roads pointing upwards to pit yourself against gravity await you to achieve your bucket list of goals of reaching the summits. There are ample opportunities to push yourself to and beyond your limits, along with unbeatable views on the altitude-charged switchback ascents with backdrops of snow-capped peaks to the fast and breathtaking snaking descents. We will tackle the Col du Télégraphe - Col du Galibier as a to-do on our bucket list and read some interesting facts about this legendary French climb.
As a part of The Tour de World, I am sharing fascinating cycling facts about each continent, and Asia, with its variety of cultures, is next up on our itinerary. We will be exploring the area around the unique Kochi Niyodo River. This snake-like river crosses many arched bridges in Japan, and lush natural vistas surround it with the pristine waters of the Shimanto River and forest-blanketed mountains. Another stop-off will be the beautiful and exotic Ha Long Bay in Vietnam, one of the world's seven wonders of nature. We will also extend our trip with routes in Malaysia and Taiwan. So, get your bike, trainer and bags ready and let's go!
As a part of The Tour de World, I am sharing exciting cycling facts about each continent, and South America is next up on our itinerary. Of the twelve countries in tropical South America, we will be visiting the largest of them all, Brazil, where you'll find some of the most popular places to party and ride along the iconic beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema. Then we hop on to a tropical Caribbean island and visit the oldest city in the Americas. Get your bike, trainer and bags ready and let's go!