In days of yore by now I’d now be well into the winter base work. This winter has been a bit different; I’ve canned pretty much all cycling with the exception of the 6 miles to work and back every day. Once a week, give or take, I’ve ridden the long way to work. I think a couple of seasons ago i did something similar, heading out just before christmas to card an 11mph average on a flattish route. Hardcore.
For most of my peers winter tends to be the time to pile on the mileage, re-establish the base and endurance, and enjoy some steady group rides and good conversation. There isn’t any pressing need to be doing absurd distances before January; too much winter training can lead to a mid-season burn-out and diminishing returns from there on in.
My main aim at the moment is to keep the weight down enough so I can still fit into my clothes; i’m a 30″ waist, this doesn’t leave much margin for error, and keep fit enough so i can avoid that palsied sensation of out of breathness and muscular atrophy. I’m also flying under the radar, no garmin or recording devices – there’s not really anything worth recording.
I joined the club run this morning for the first time in a very long time. It now consists of three groups of different paces. This is primarily because of the numbers now riding; the bike boom has led to increased numbers for the club, now hovering at around 120. I went for the medium group and decided to cling on in.
It was a decent day for cycling, a balmy 6 degrees with dry roads. There was a headwind on the way out, i realised this when on the front, so slipped surreptitiously to the back of the group and hid amongst the bigger chaps. After about 20 miles i peeled off and headed for home, discretion being the better part of valour. It was my longest effort since August. I didn’t fancy putting in an early bid for the bonk hammer, best off leaving that one to the professionals.