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Tales of an endurance athlete
Duathlete at heart, but will do aything running/cycling/swimming/multisport related. Within reason of course:-)

My RAAM week of training goes like this...

tiggaby tiggaMay 16th 2011
I do love my bike riding and that's a fact. But there comes a point when even yours truly, says 'Argh... not another ride!!'
Some stats for April:
Total monthly mileage: 1600miles
Hours spent in the saddle: 78hours (give or take a few minutes!)
Daily calorie consumption is anything between 4200 and 5000 calories
The odd run, the odd 'unclassified' spin to work and back.
To sum it all up this is genuinely the most I've ever ridden in my life and the cycling legs feel good, even if they are a bit fried at the moment.
Luckily in April there were a number of bank holidays so I'd always planned some epic days back to back to bulk the mileage up. So here I am in the middle of May, 1 month and 2 days until the gun goes and I can put these mega miles into action.

May has been a bit more of challenge without the bank holidays, and my sisters arrival from SA on a 3 week holiday which was eventually delayed by 16 hours. Work has also been a bit manic with deadlines and a bit of pressure... all good for the head I guess, but hells bells it's been a crazy 2 weeks of May. My typical week looks something like this until the first week of June.

Mon: am - travel back from Jacks' in the New Forest, to miss traffic I'm gone by 5:40am.
pm - Ride 75-85km 'easy' around Richmond Park. Easy a term used very losely when the wind blows, Richmond Park is not easy!
Tues: am - Ride 1 hour at 33-34km/hr around Richmond Park
pm - Ride 80-90km around Richmond Park. Around 1 hour is done lapping the park with the HR in 140's at roughly 17:30-18:00/11km lap. ~35.5km/hr - Sometimes quicker if I feel stronger.
Wed: am - Ride 80-90min steady 32km/hr
pm - Ride 80-90km around Richmond Park. All steady trying to hold target pace for RAAM 34-34.5km/hr
Thurs am - 60mins easy spin
pm - 60min easy spin + a session of biting into a wood block whilst my physio 'guru' Helen does her thing to my battered body
Fri am - 90min, how hard I go depends on how I feel
pm - 45-60min easy spin. Mad dash pack the bags and head back down to Jacks. Normal arrival time about 9pm... I have it good too, when I arrive there is always a plate of food for this hungry boy!
Sat am - My hardcore long ride. I ride 90mins before I meet up with some fast boys in the Forest and we proceed to smash out 40miles at 26-27mph, ramping up the intensity at the end and finishing in a lung busting 30+mph for the final few miles. I then continue on to eventually get home with 170-180km done in anything up to 36.5km/hr on my road bike.
pm - powernap?
Sun am - As much as I would like to sleep all day long.... I am out for a 3-4hour easyish ride (100-130km). Sometimes I have good legs, but generally I am a little fatigued and if I can hold 33-34km/hr I'm quite happy. This past Sunday I felt quite strong in parts and even managed a 45min burst at 25+mph (60% with a tailwind, so it's in my favour!)

And then Monday comes round again, my saddle on my bike looks and feels less appealing... but I get out and start all over again!

I broke that routine last week when I did my first time trial. It was only a 20mile (32km), but it was done on fried legs. Thanks to my main man Anthony, I had a disc wheel to use and the time trial was out and back along the A31 south of Guildford. A bit lumpy, a bit windy but it was only to see where I am at.
So where am I at? Having not ridden a time trial for so long I started a bit to easy and only went through halfway in 22:40, 12km of that 16km was into the stiff breeze. The second half however, I put my head down and kept the HR above 160 and came home in 42:53. A second half split at roughly 48km/hr! Good for second on the night, but the best thing was I felt like I could have done it all again 30minutes later! Recovery is key in RAAM, from finishing one 7 hour shift of riding to starting the next 7 hours later the body has to recover quick and be ready for it all again.

I'm strong in the head right now having done so much decent paced miles, and my body is handling it all very well. I can't wait for the final 10 days of eating pies and actually getting the odd lie in.
Having ridden with my fellow team mates on a few occasions I know they are all in great shape too, in fact on Saturday's blitz ride James Gilfillan was literally ridding away from everyone on the hills and for a small chap has an incredible power output for the flat roads too! Just over a month to go to a race for which my last 6 months has been dedicated to, and the best part of one year in the organising of. Luckily the tireless work of crew chief Simon, and Team Captain Nick Crosby has brought this race to reality with the whole 14 man rider/crew team ready for this challenge of a life time!


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