Category Archives: Training blogs…

Training rides for the JOGLE challenge

The aliens have landed.

Thursday has come to mean a long ride, and a long ride it was – 72 miles in fact. Highlights were the fantastic houses around Compton Pouncefoot and South Cadbury and a bright green dot that followed me along the road in Street. I was a bit perplexed at first until I realised it must be a kid playing with a laser pointer from his room. Had to admire his commitment as it followed me for a good few 100 meters! Another strange moment was a guy pulling alongside me, winding his window down and saying “That’s a bloody bright light you have there son” then driving off. And quite right he was! Reached the pub to meet the Shipham MTB guys and had a quick drink then headed back. The cycle across the top (Mendip Motorway) was a little knackering – I think not only was it a long ride but I also should have got more fuel in me earlier on, as I was running low by the end of it. Here is the route:

A long one

Another short sprint – 24 miles

The trouble right now is simply having the time to train. I have a big deadline on at work which takes up all my working day and more and then anything left over is being used for the business which has some interesting developments going on. Fitting in training right now is very tricky, but its very important to do, so I keep making sure I ride, even if they are short rides. In fact I have come to realise that short rides at speed are probably just as useful as long rides at endurance pace. I think the two work well together as one builds strength and one builds stamina. The most important thing is not to damage your body when you train at speed, and after chatting to another JOGLEr I have been stretching a LOT more before and after rides and also doing some kettle bell swings to try and build up the muscle around my knees.

So, today was another fast sprint, albeit with the wind in my face from Nunney onwards! Still, a fast average and a very fast descent just before Shepton (around 50mph!).

On another note, I’ve noticed that donations are starting to be made which is great for the motivation, so many thanks for those (you know who you are, Tasker ;-))!

Here was the route:

Another short sprint

Quick sprint in the evening sun

I didn’t have time to go for a long ride this weekend as I’ve been working hard on some new business projects, but I couldn’t let it slip past without any miles in the saddle. Hence the quick 20 mile sprint to Leigh on Mendip, Mells, Kilmerston, Chilcompton and back. I really did go for it given that it was such a short ride, and the average was pretty high as a result. Unfortunately there was a nasty head wind travelling West which was pretty frustrating. Here is the route:

Quick sprint

A fast 60 miles

Sometimes you just have a good ride. I guess this time it was good because a) it wasn’t lashing it down and b) I hadn’t just had a big fatty meal. The miles just flew by and before I knew it I was in the pub with the Shipham lot with 45 miles under my belt. A quick lemonade, some crisps and banter and back on the road for the last 15 miles home. Amazingly managed to get all the way up Burrington Combe, right to the Mendip Wood Shavings sign in my big ring. Not sure my legs will thank me tomorrow. Here is the route:

Dry 60 miles

“Do not pass GO. Do not collect £200”

Normally its a tune that was last playing on the radio, so I have no idea why today this phrase was going around my head during the last 5 miles of todays ride ?! What I DO know is that it was raining cats and dogs, there was a high wind and the visibility was very poor and as a result I was very pleased to be wearing a particularly flourescent jacket… That still didn’t stop an idiot passing me on one side of the road as I cycled through the coned off roadworks area just up the road. I just wish drivers would treat people as well as they treat horses!

You know you will always get a good workout if you go down to Blagdon lake and back as it involves climbing the second most aggressive hill in the area: Two Trees. Check the elevation profile!

Cats and dogs

Fish & chips + 20 miles = bad idea

I took the weekend off cycling for various reasons so decided to ease back into it this evening with a short 20 mile loop. I didn’t completely think this through however and had just stuffed a large plate of fish and chips and a pear cider down me before I left. Needless to say, I didn’t feel great, at all, most of the way around. Still, it got me thinking about the perfectly simple rule governing the success of the entire challenge: as long as I keep turning the pedals I’ll get there. Doesn’t matter how quick or slow, I just have to keep turning them. Here is the route:

20 mile loop

60 miles in the wind and rain

It’s a little against normal human instinct to head off cycling into heavy wind and rain but I was resolved to complete a long ride come what may. I calculated a 60 mile route and headed off wondering if I would have to wimp out and ring for a lift half way round. It really was blowing a gale and within 5 miles my shoes were filled with water to the extend where it was spilling out the top on downstrokes! I battled on enjoying the test of my determination to complete the route. Within 10 miles I was soaked through to the skin, but still warm and so it was bearable. Finally after nearly three hours I reached the Miners pub to meet the usual Shipham MTB lot after their ride. Spent an hour or so catching up with the guys then headed home. 61 miles completed.

60 miles in rain and wind!

Loop down to Bruton and up to Kilmerston

Shame to again only have time for a 30 ish mile ride, but I guess its better than nothing. The road to Bruton was fast and the road up out of Bruton in the Frome direction was amazing – I’m sure the wind was with me the whole way! I couldnt help myself sneaking a Wispa bar at the petrol station, and a few ‘fastics a bit later on. Overall a fair bit of mild up and down, and a good little ride. Top speed was ehm, a little fast! Here it is:

Bruton to Kilmerston loop

Long loop around three lakes

I was pretty tired today, in fact so tired that I fell asleep in my chair. So much for power napping – I didn’t wake up for a good 30 minutes! Although I was half tempted to not cycle tonight I decided that for that very reason I should. After all, I wont get the choice come September… I went on a very round about route to Chew Valley lake, then to Blagdon lake with a wrong turn that ended up in another loop in-between. Feeling OK I decided to hang a right down to Rickford, Churchill and Shipham then through to Cheddar and up the gorge. I got heckled a bit by some weird group of older people (pot holers) but the trip up the gorge at night is always a pleasure. Total length was 47 miles, and it was a slowish ride due to a fair amount of elevation and a lot of small country back roads.

Three lakes loop