On the difficulties of riding hard at 6am

I’ve taken to doing my training at stupid o’ clock. I can’t even begin to explain how stupid it is. It’s not even remotely light when I leave the house and it’s cold enough to convince me that hill climb season is here.

Fitting in training around extensive work commitments whilst also making time for the most important thing of all – family life – is really hard going. You have to suck it up and get up early and get out on your bike and try and use every available minute, even when there aren’t that many minutes available, and then deal with the collateral damage that a hard training session wreaks on a 10 hour day.

Lately I’ve found myself riding up one particularly horrible hill – the steep side of Dundry – at around 6.02am. It comes in about 10 minutes after leaving the house. It feels absolutely disgusting and also impossible to put out the requisite amount of effort. I am using my heart rate monitor but it stays stubbornly low and every rasping breath hurts. Who knows, maybe it’s good preparation. I know some things for certain; it makes me feel sick and all subsequent hills suffer from severely diminished returns after the paroxysms of effort in the inky morning light. I enviously regard my peers riding in the balmy sunlight of the afternoon.

I am rewarded, as ever, by the transcendent views and the beauty of the morning.

Am doing my blog. Traumbébé.

5 thoughts on “On the difficulties of riding hard at 6am

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  1. I’m very glad hill climbs don’t start at 6,00am (or stupid ‘o clock as we say in the sport) I once did a 25 mile TT at 6am on a Sunday morning on the A1. I never went back

  2. Family and work life on it’s own is hard.

    During the days of erratic sleep patterns (dictated by the randomness of little people in our house) I managed to squeeze in 80 miles before going to work at Jake’s once.


    1. I occasionally do my hill reps at stupid o’clock at this time of year. E.g. Tue I had to go down south for 2 days of meetings so did my session at about 6:30. Did a handful of 2 min efforts up hill and RPE is way worse than doing them later in the day. I almost bailed on the first one. Can’t get away with hard reps early doors.

  3. I checked my clock the other day, from doorstep to the foot of the Old Bristol Road is generally a whopping 5 minutes. The new earlier start at work hsa meant a change in morning routine to guarantee time for an espresso before I leave!

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