Archive for the ‘Cycle Training and Cycling’ Category

Training Week Day 5

Saturday, February 18th, 2012

Day 5

Last Day of my training schedule today.  Ben joined me for a steady 2.5 hours.

I woke up in the best mood I’ve been in all week. 
I wondered:
Was it because the sun was shining?
Or perhaps it was becuase Ben and I had agreed the night before that we were not going to push hard?
Or maybe it was because I had planned the flattest route of the week?
No, it was because in 2 and a half hours this would all be over!!

Before I had even met Ben it became apparent that the gale force winds weren’t going to let me get away with an easy day and to make things worse for Ben he came off before arriving at the meet – luckily he was ok and soldiered on 🙂  We also took a wrong turning around Cowden and found the hilliest, rather than the flattest, road ever, again that damn route planner!

It was great to ride with someone who a) Had also been training all week and therefore knew what it felt like to be tired and b) Had the same goals of the session i.e. this was an aerobic ride – this was the first day this week that my heart rate actually spent some time in my aerobic zone.  It’s fascinating how the body works, I was notably less hungry today, my body using fat as its primary fuel, not glycogen.  Mind you, as fit as he is and weighing in at 60kg, I doubt Ben had even got into his aerobic zone waiting for me on Ide Hill!  That said, we had a great chat and it was very enjoyable, thanks Ben.

It is so rewarding to set yourself a big goal and then reach it – 13 hours of structured training in 5 days.  Initially all I wanted was to find at least one person per day to ride with so I didn’t have to do it on my own.  I got a lot more than that though.  I got to ride with some really really top blokes (and nearly Nicky – if only I had been more organised – sorry Nicky!) despite that fact that all bar one of them rode with me on a weekday when everyone was at work!  If I had met any one of you for the first time I can hand on heart say that you all make fantastic Ambassadors for your clubs – cheers chaps it has been a pleasure.

As much as I would like to have won all the climbs and felt great about myself I didn’t in fact lead over a single climb, instead I had to push myself harder than I ever imagined – isn’t that what training’s all about?!

After leaving Ben today I was about 10 minutes from home and I encountered that elusive thing that so many of us dream about.  It only lasted about 30 seconds but after 12 hours and 50 minutes I found it – a tailwind!!

Now to the Hell Of The Ashdown.


Training Week Day 2

Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

Day 2

4 and a half hours today.  With the 3 hours yesterday my planned 6 hours has now totalled 7 and a half – sack the route planner!

A great turnout for midweek (doesn’t anyone work any more?!):

Me, Rob Thatcher, Dave Twin, Jack from Sydenham
My brother-in-law Rob Slee
Nick Young from Southborough Wheelers

No James Moss today but our average speed seemed to be higher, no weak links I guess James 😉

Everyone suffered after yesterday and although today was billed as an aerobic session the six of us pushed a bit too hard on the hills and into the wind leaving nothing on the road….great ride everyone…in particular Rob Slee looking v strong indeed I’ve no doubt you’ll demolish Wayne in your Iron Man !

My legs hurt, my back hurts, my neck hurts………..bring on the racing season I need a rest from training!

I’ve gotta mention the weather – sunny and warm – awesome 🙂

Rest Day, Day 3, tomorrow i.e. half an hour on the rollers or put it another way, more exercise than most of the members of my local gym do in a week!!!

For Day 4 I’ve got 5 new climbs to work on our 5 to 10 minute efforts, got a good group lined up so that should be very exciting. 

Keep riding



Training Week

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

Due to being ill over Christmas I decided to take 5 days off work this week and ride my bike to catch up with my training.

Well, I say ride my bike, if Day 1 (today) was anything to go by it is more “punishing myself for 3 hours” than “enjoying the countryside by bike!”

4 of us set off today; Me, Rob and Jack from our cycle club and then we were lucky to have Pro Cyclist James Moss from Node-4-Giordana (the old Motorpoint squas).  Have spent the last 2 years with Endura Racing and competing against Bradley Wiggins and Lance Armstrong to name just two more than mediocre opponents, James was keen to put the 1000 miles he has just clocked up in Lanzarote to the test.  What have I got myself into?!

Our goal today was to race up 5 climbs and recover between them, meaning we could really focus on the 10 minute efforts required each time we watched a 68kg James disappear up the road……

The 3 of us mere mortals had a great battle all day with me and Jack even have a sprint finish for the top of Baileys Hill (which Jack kindly gave me after discussion) but on the whole we all looked strong and the weather was warmer than it had been in ages; I think at one point it went above zero!

I’m just trying to get my heart rate back down this evening before tomorrow’s ride, a ‘steady’ 4 hours!


Monday, January 9th, 2012

…..hopefully making everyone else suffer too though:


Training Elite Cyclists, somebody’s gotta do it!!

Friday, January 6th, 2012

More mentions in the cycling press…..

Thanks for the mention James

Tuesday, December 20th, 2011

Always nice to get a mention from your clients, take a look…..

Team GB – What an inspiration!

Monday, September 26th, 2011

I know I know you can read about Mark Cavendish winning the World Road Race Championships on any website but it would be positively wrong if I didn’t comment on how incredibly inspirational yesterday was.

Held in Copenhagen yesterday, 209 riders set off in the peloton over a 266 km (165 mile) course (yes that’s not a typo!).  Team GB sat on the front for the WHOLE RACE, killing themselves just to make sure no breakaways stayed away, so that Mark Cavendish at least had a chance of winning the bunch sprint.  I’m gonna say that again, 165 miles into the wind whilst 200 of the best riders on the planet (who have all peaked to win this event) all sheltered behind them, saving up to 30% of their energy.  Oh yeah, if any of you are wondering how fast they went, I know I’ve had a good day out if I can do 65 miles at 18 mph;  they did ONE HUNDRED more miles than that at 28.5 mph!!!

So to the finish, with 7 out of the 8 GB riders completely spent, Cav found himself boxed in with, I’d say, 350m to go.  He must have been 15th at one point but somehow, I don’t know how, he found his way through and past EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM to win by no more than 2 inches, amazing!!

Like he said before and after the race, he knows how hard his team mates work for him and he doesn’t want to let them down.  Fear of failure is a very powerful thing, whether it’s arranging to meet a mate to go for a run or to go to the gym, or riding a Sunday race for your cycle club when they’ve worked really hard for you all race.  To motivate people I often get them to put themselves in a position where they really don’t want to fail and it scares them enough into succeeding, you should try it 😉

This was Britain’s first road race world title (for the the elite men) since the sixties when the great Tommy Simpson last won.

Cav won but the team got him there.  To a cycling fan like me this is like a footie fan watching England win the World Cup, that’s pretty bl**dy special…

This increasing success will I’m sure bring us more cycling facilites, bike shops and people to ride with, thanks Cav and above all, thanks team GB.

You gotta youtube it…



Putting on a cycle race

Wednesday, September 21st, 2011

I promoted my first ever cycle race on Sunday at the legendary Hillingdon cycle circuit where Bradley Wiggins grew up racing.  6 months of planning and hard work from both myself and some wonderful volunteers, spectators and of course riders made it an awesome day out in the sunshine.  My goal was to provide an accessible introduction to road racing for my club, Sydenham Wheelers and 2 other clubs, Avanti and 7Oaks Tri Club.  I even raced and came 4th myself – what a day!  The feedback was amazing, take a look below, I think they’re going to persuade me to put on another one and maybe invite a few more clubs too…….

Can’t believe the feedback:

“Well Done PB for yesterday. I know what hard work and the effort you put in and the risks you took and I hope that you feel what a great achievement it was.  It will be an annual event I’m sure. Who knows, it might compete for the social event of the year!  Even the result came out right, well, according to the form book anyway.  Congratulations again.”

Thank you for yesterday. I think the day will have encouraged more Sydenham Wheelers to try road racing, and I think it’s success will snow ball. I am looking forward to next year already.  I know such events take a lot of time and effort – we are very fortunate that you did all that you did. “

“Hi everyone,Id just like to say a huge thank you for yesterday, it was thoroughly enjoyable and a great introduction for me into road racing in a friendly environment.  However it wouldn’t have been possible or such a success without your hard work.  Many thanks”

“Well done Paul and the Syd’s. A brilliant event.”

I think you can mark that one down as a huge success. As previously mentioned good racing, Good food and great way for a lot of people to either meet for the first time or catch up with old friends.   On behalf of the club I would like to thank you Paul for getting the idea off the ground and getting a great event together”

It feels good 😉 Watch this space!

Cycling for a living

Friday, September 16th, 2011

Took people cycling for 3 hours today in the end – beautiful sunshine – it’s a tough job but someone’s gotta do it!

Everyone said how beneficial they found it.  Sometimes all I am is the catalyst.

If you have a bike and a helmet then the hardest part of going cycling is getting out the front door – once you’re out, you can often ride further than you imagined – find someone to go with you so you can’t duck out or you would be letting them down.  Take water and some fruit and your mobile at the very least and most of all…………………………ENJOY!

Or do 10 mins on the stepper in the gym, yaaaawn 🙁

Cycle Skills

Friday, September 16th, 2011

Felt like I made a difference this morning, love it!
Took a lovely lady cycling and after she said she now feels much happer checking her bike over, changing gears and riding in traffic.  She did really well, just needed that bit of belief.  Isn’t that what we all need, someone just to reassure us that it’s going to be alright and maybe teach us a bit along the way.  Believe in yourself and you’ll be amazed at what you can do.