Sunday, 11 September 2011

Staying Strong WITHOUT Cycling

One of the challenges I've had over the last few weeks has been staying motivated to keep fit even though I wouldn't, after all, be joining the rest of the Paris to Venice team on this years mini-adventure.

I had planned to be part of the foursome riding London to Paris this weekend, but circumstances intervened. Being pressed for time also meant I didn't always feel I could justify taking hours out for training rides when I had no real need to be in peak form.

But coincidentally, I've also noticed the trend towards shorter, more intensive training sessions that several fitness coaches have been advocating.

That has helped me in two ways:

Firstly, I concentrated on shorter training rides, mostly around an hour long, at a higher intensity to build strength rather than trying to improve endurance by doing loads of miles.

Secondly, I've added running to the mix. Running is more intensive anyway and I was a runner long before I was a regular cyclist. Getting back to it felt odd at first (in fact, I felt old and stiff!) but I'm back to more like the form I used to have, albeit I am a few years older. Shortish runs have meant I could mix in a few sprints at times as well. My knees seem to be holding up so far...

Psychologically, missing out on this weekend's adventure hasn't been pleasant, but knowing I'm doing something towards 'keeping up', fitness-wise, has made it easier to bear.

So, I have no need for regrets - just a heightened resolve to be better placed for the next opportunity that comes my way.

And that's next week, when the Tour of Britain visits Bury St Edmunds and local cyclists of all standards get a chance to join in the fun. More on that in a couple of days!


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