Here We Go Again!

So the moment had finally arrived. Up early, excited about going out on my bike for the first time in 3 weeks, training for the 2010 season starting today and really up for it. I was like a kid at Christmas, until I looked out of the window.

The tree across the road was at a 45 degree angle, our wheelie bin was at a 90 degree angle and I’m sure I saw a cat fly past. To cap it off there was the kind of rain last seen in a Batman film and a severe weather warning on the telly. Bloody Cumbria, I know i’m going to lose days outside to the weather throughout the winter, but to lose the very first one was just unfair!

The plan had been my 50 mile, 3 hour, Thirlmere loop at an easy pace. This takes you up the A66 to Keswick, out over the Nest (a horrible little climb) into the lakes, you do the loop round Thirlmere and then head back through St Johns in the Vale and round the back of Bassenthwaite (where my friend Rachael works in a really nice cafe, by sheer coincidence). I had planned to put in a Max HR test on the climb out of Keswick too.

Clearly, I now needed to re-jig my plan based on an indoor session. The thought of 3 hours on the Turbo (Even the Kurt Kinetic) is enough to make me sell my bike so I plumped for an hour and a half of easy riding (keeping my HR below about 85% at all times) with the aforementioned Max HR test thrown in. I cribbed the structure from an illicit copy of Pete Read’s Black Book (Thanks to Will from Bikeradar’s forums!) and, essentially, you batter yourself at increasing intensity until you can’t batter yourself no more. My musical companions were Mogwai and my DVD choice was The Quest. The Phil Ligget narrated tale of Gilberto Simoni’s 2003 Giro Win.

So 30 minutes into my session, my long suffering girlfriend stood with a pen and a stopwatch to record the results. I started off in a 53×18 at a cadance of 100 for 2 minutes, then up a gear, then up another… By 3 minutes it was agony. The Polar later told me that i’d passed from my endurance pace to above lactic threshold in just over a minute. By 4 minutes i was wondering if I could last. By 5 and a half my candance had dropped to 85 and my heart rate by about 15 beats, the test was over.

And the result? 196 max HR. Exactly the same as last year. So I needn’t have bothered. The things we do eh?

Where The Magic Happens…

I know you’re all dying to see just where PD Malcolm spends his winter so here it is!

You will note the MP3 player rigged through inappropriately loud speakers… The DVD player also perched perilously atop the Black and Decker work bench.

The connisseur will also notice the motivational Ikurrina on the wall. Just out of shot is a framed print from the Champs Elysees stage of the 1973 Tour de France and a Girls Aloud Calender.

The eagle eyed amongst you will also observe the comedy Reindeer antlers on the floor… hemhem