JANUARY 30-FEBRUARY 14, 2021
Whether or not Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow on Groundhog Day, predicting an early Spring (yay!) or six more weeks of Winter weather (booooo!) we’ll send you to cycling purgatory. We’ll challenge you physically, mentally and spiritually, to do the same short route, again, and again and again… with awards for each repeat. What lessons will you learn after each repeat? How many times will you endure it? What will you gain from your suffering?
Were you even aware that, while the movie Groundhog Day wasn’t intended to be Buddhist, it’s considered a Dharma classic?
In alignment with that, we intend the repetitive, do-over nature of this Challenge to help you experience various modes of existence; to contemplate nature and consciousness; to dig deep, and transcend the fundamental unsatisfactoriness and painfulness of mundane life; and then… feel the sheer joy of being.
Maybe we’ll even turn you on to a new mindfulness practice. Every few days we’ll give you a tip on how to stay more present while riding. Yeah, we’re into that.
WHAT’S INCLUDED WITH ENTRY?
1. A personal inspiration to fortify your physical, mental and spiritual well-being during the continued Covid craziness (try saying that three times!); with challenging bodily and emotional exertion, outside or indoors using a cycling training app like Zwift.
2. Encouragement to be mindful while riding (staying super PRESENT). We’ll give you some training tips about that every few days.
3. Support, kudos and accolades from your friends at Planet Ultra to keep you motivated and excited for future REAL LIVE when everyone feels safe and comfortable gathering together again.
4. A super snazzy cycling oriented, but non-event specific, tech tee with a great new design for each Virtual Challenge we offer. Shirts will be mailed after the event. You can upgrade to a Performance Hoodie if you wish; or get the free shirt and buy the Hoodie too. (Images below.)
5. Chance to win a FREE Planet Ultra single day event entry for later this year or next.
6. Planet Ultra will “sponsor” you based on the greatest number of repeats you do in a single day. Best day of the 16 days determines your “sponsorship” discount award:
5-6 repeats: 5%
7-8 repeats: 10%
9-10 repeats: 15%
11-14 repeats: 25%
15+ repeats: 35%
“Sponsorship” discounts earned may be used towards entry for any LIVE Planet Ultra 2021 or 2022 single day event, except Death Valley Century.
7. Special, personalized plaque awarded to both the outdoor and indoor riders with the highest total repeated miles for the 16 days.
8. Special, personalized plaque awarded to both the outdoor and indoor riders with the most accumulated elevation gain in repeated miles for the 16 days.
9. Our heartfelt gratitude for your support and generosity! 2020 was a flaming train wreck of a year for us. Without you, we would not have survived. We wish 2021 was starting better; but we absolutely need your continued love and support. Without you, we could very well be out of the cycling business and looking for new jobs (which isn’t easy to do when you’re 55+).
These virtual challenges help keep us afloat and hopeful for the 2021 season. We’re very happy you’re participating! If riding endless repeats on a short course isn’t your cup of tea, but you’d like to lend us a hand, you can also simply SEND US SOME LOVE.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
1. “Register” for Groundhog Day Challenge online or with mail-in waiver (see below).
2. Request to join the Groundhog Day Challenge Strava Club. For the duration of the Challenge, your privacy settings must be set to EVERYONE, including your profile, so we can view individual activities. You must use Strava to participate in this Challenge.
3. Create a route in your neighborhood, or choose a route on your online cycling app, that’s 9-10 miles long. Every time you ride that route, please name the activity “Groundhog Day, XX miles with YY climbing route” (where XX is route distance and YY is the climbing in the single lap).
4. Between January 30th and February 14th, ride that exact route, over and over and over again, as many times as you wish (or can stand), and on as many days during these three weeks as you can tolerate. Any deviation from your original route on any of your activity days will cause that entire day’s mileage to be forfeited.
5. Planet Ultra will keep track of how many times you rode your exact route, how many laps per time you rode it, and how much elevation gain per activity.
6. Ride solo. Absolutely no group riding allowed. An essential aspect of this Challenge is to test your mental toughness; to test your ability to complete mundane task over and over with a good attitude of gratitude for each lap.
7. Maintain social distancing and wear a face covering if entering any business along your route.
8. Planet Ultra will post results of total mileage and total climbing here and on our Results page.
Entry Fee: $65
Use the Join The Challenge button to register with RunSignUp and pay by credit card (includes a small service fee). To pay by Venmo or Zelle, download and email this form. The email addresses for Venmo and Zelle are at the bottom of the form.
Planet Ultra’s Mission is to create for you the finest endurance bicycling events and tours anywhere. We strive to challenge you physically, mentally and spiritually, in an environment of friendly camaraderie, personal connection and community among motivated and adventurous cyclists. While you participate with Planet Ultra, we trust you’ll make great friends, find helpful mentors (or be one) and find inspiration well beyond just cranking out an event.
The isolation of 2020 certainly annihilated our Mission. While our mileage challenges, virtual centuries and doubles, and Everesting Challenge successfully motivated many of us to stay fit and strong and absolutely saved Planet Ultra (meaning Deb & Brian) from complete financial devastation, Covid still haunts us. 2021 definitely isn’t starting out as we’d planned. We hope you’ll join us in these virtual challenges, and keep us in business until we can host live events again.