Saturday, 24 April 2010

Back In Training!

So I started my serious training this time last week. I'm doing about 100 miles a week in the gym and about 60 miles out on the road. That'll change over the next few weeks as I re-adapt back to my outdoor bike. It takes some getting used to after the winter break and the saddle sores can cause problems if I do to much too soon on the outdoor bike, as I learned last summer!

Slight difference in training this year. Last year I spent 100% of my time building my stamina and endurance by doing cardio exercise such as running and of course bike training. This year I'm spending about 30% of my training time on weights exercises, specifically suited to my biking needs. This includes building my back, shoulders, arms and especially my quads and hamstrings in my legs for pedal power!

I have noticed a difference already. I've been weight training since late last year, just as the outdoor season was coming to an end. Already, my core strength and balance have improved dramatically and I feel more steady on the bike. Don't get me wrong, I'm not building muscle in the 'meat head' sense. Just toning and conditioning to maximise my endurance and capability on the bike.

I'm now searching for the perfect bike to do the next event, the Land's End to John O' Groats in August. I'm definitely using a Hybrid type bike, mostly for riding comfort. It will be a fast model, a sports type version with road bike wheels and as light as possible too.

Friday, 16 April 2010

Change Of Plan!

Two years ago, I planned to cycle from Land's End to John O' Groats. After 3 months of training I had to cancel the event due to a knee injury. Last year I completed a return trip of the Leeds & Liverpool Canal, setting a record of just over 22 and a half hours. I was planning to try and beat that record this year but I've changed the challenge!
After a lot of training and investigations into what caused my knee injury, I am now really confident that I can complete the 1000 mile ride. One of the main reasons my knee reacted so badly was to do with the type of bike I was training on. I've always been ok with mountain bikes but not with road bikes (racing type bikes). I've decided to use a Hybrid bike for the event. This has the streamlined wheels and design of a road bike but the handlebars are designed more like a mountain bike and is more comfortable to ride. The leg distance for pedalling is also shorter, which means my knees won't get so sore.
I'm hoping to do the ride in July or August depending on my training and weather conditions. So check back for regular progress reports on the planning and training.