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2017 is a year of training building up to a personal challenge in June 2018. More information coming soon!

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Its all about the Dragons Ride L'Etape (and then the TWOR)!

Ironjediby IronjediMay 24th 2017
Its not all about the Twor you know!

Its now about the Dragons Ride L’Etape which is only 2 weeks away. The prospect of cycling over some of the hilliest roads South Wales has to offer has its attraction. I am riding the Devil route at 300KM or 186 miles. This route has 4829 metres or 15,843 ft of ascent. There are five significant climbs, The Bwlch, Rhingos, Devils Elbow, Devils Staircase and Blackmountain. Its going to be a pretty tough day in the saddle for sure.

Thankfully I am riding with Mark and Alan who unbeknown to them have agreed to pull me round on a bungee. We are set for just the most stunning of days out with some spectacular scenery and great company in Mark and Alan and I’ve been told that the aid stations are superb. French pastries and croissants I believe, and there are 5 of them. Due to me being motivated by food, this news is pretty exciting. I understand Didi The Devil Senft is also starting the race; I mean sportive, and he is going to be running up and down the Devils Elbow cheering people on.

I have been training reasonably hard and have put in some good weeks of training leading up to the ride. Due to having both this ride and the Twor ultra run coming up quite soon, I have had to continue to train for both disciplines and fitting everything in has meant early starts. As a result I have put off swim training until after the Twor. At least the early mornings are much lighter and this week I even rode to work in shorts.
So about the Twor, 4 weeks to go and this coming week will see me (and possibly Pete, Jon and Dave) running two marathons on the Coast Path. I hope to follow this training run with a solid back to back week of running and am aiming to hit 100 miles this week.

With these two events coming up fast its all starting to get a bit real and sometimes when out running or riding I do question myself “what are you doing?”. This follows with a second question "what are you doing?".

So in preparation for both events on Wednesday I visited Tanya @2014wimbleball from Always Beautiful in Taunton (Bookings can be made on 01823 332221) who has kindly offered to sponsor me Sports Massages for my upcoming challenges and beyond as I prepare for 2018 Epic Challenge, which I hope to share with everyone soon. This was such a kind offer and I have now realised just how important it is to aid recovery and improve performance.

The massage was fantastic, although just a tad uncomfortable on a couple of muscles which were a little tight. My legs were in fact, in good shape considering the miles I try and put in each week. Due to training pretty much no stop over the last few weeks, it was starting to take its toll on me and particularly my left quad and knees.

With a couple of muscles loosened off the pulling on my knees should calm down. It was great to just stop for over an hour and relax, something Im not that good at. So I left Tanya and as I walked away my legs left like they had been battered with a cricket bat multiple times. I could see Lees @macklin_lee tweet to me after I said I was going for a massage “Be afraid #smallbutmighty”. Now Lee is a strong ex-Rugby player and I completely understand what he had meant now. It did make me wonder what my legs would be like in the morning though.

The alarm went off early and I was out of bed quicker than normal, I thought one of two things had happened during the night either Aliens must have removed my old tired middle aged legs and replaced them with someone elses or Tanya had worked her magic over them. I am defiantly with the latter of these two. My legs felt FASTER, HIGHER, STRONGER to steal the Olympic Motto. I hopped on my bike for the morning commute and smashed it out in 1:46, much quicker than previous weeks/months. My legs felt rejuvenated, fresher and without the odd niggle I had been having of late. I cannot recommend Tanya’s Sports massage enough. We talked a bit about a roller, again something completely Alien to me, but something I may well be investing in for the future. Thank you Tanya. :-)

Good luck to Alan above who this weekend takes on the Liverpool to Manchester Double (100 mile ultra) and Paul Beechey and Paul Ali who are going to smash up GUCR (145 mile ultra). Im tired just thinking about it. Take it easy out there this week and enjoy the sun. :-)
Its all about the Dragons Ride L'Etape (and then the TWOR)!
Update: Early Friday morning and Ive just found out that Jeff Smith @everestat53 summited Everest and made it to the top of the world. This is absolutely inspiring and takes things to another kind of craziness. I am so pleased for him, his team and his family. Well done and safe journey back down. Today is an awesome day :-)
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