Friday, 23 January 2009

Riding cycles

You could say bikes are bikes. Riding a bike is just riding a bike. You could even say cycling is a repetitive activity. If this was actually true would we, (The Obsessive Ones) still be doing it? I doubt it! I often stop and think, ‘Hang on; this is a completely different experience to last year…. But I’m still just riding a bike’.

BMXing to school as a nipper, learning to bunny-hop. Crashing in the woods on my first mtb desperately working out how steer the thing across slippery roots (something I’m still working on!!). Doing some distance in the Lakes. Learning to read a map. Getting a road bike. Backcountry riding in big foreign hills. Pedalling fast. Focusing on climbing. Getting a REALLY fast road bike (not ashamed to say that really grabbed my imagination a couple of winters ago). Going back to those hairy Lakes passes that seemed unrideable in my teens and pinning them. Endurance racing. Hang on; best spend this winter focusing on technique… the cycle goes on.

It’s always a bike but the focus continually changes. Technique. Exploration. Bike type. Friends. Locations. Styles. This is what keeps things interesting.

Well, the next bit is called the ‘See What I Can Do’ phase. By average rider standard I think I’m fairly fast. Not surprising considering how much time I spend on my bike. But, (and it’s a big but) I can get a heck of a lot faster. This has dawned on me since I’ve changed my approach to training. Sorry, since I’ve actually started Training in a purposeful manner. When you just ride (and nothing wrong with that!) it’s easy for fitness to get stagnant. It’s easy to feel you aren’t and can’t get any faster…

Things have changed in just the last two weeks. Mr Newton has already encouraged me to push myself…. (100m full tilt running intervals after 40 miles commuting anyone….?) In the last few days I’ve started to feel real physiological changes. I couldn’t have guessed at some of the stuff Will has prescribed… and I’m sticking to it. To the letter.

I sense this has come as a bit of a surprise to my friends and team mates…

Going to Canada is an exercise in See What I Can Do. It would be crazy to take any other approach given the investment. Recent developments have been encouraging. No, I meant eye-opening and massively motivating.

A new phase. The cycle continues.

Needless to say the fish moniker will no longer be relevant folks....

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