31 Jul 2013
Me, a Bradley Wiggins.
28 Jul 2013
26 Jul 2013
It's A Hard Life...
25 Jul 2013
Six Superpowers We Cyclists Never Knew We Had
TELEPATHY: Good news, fellow velocipedists: you can read minds! Apparently, our psychic abilities are such that drivers don’t need to indicate when changing lanes or turning left around us. Similarly, when they creep out into a junction that we’re cycling across, we will know that they’ve spotted us and that they aren’t simply going to mow us down. Essentially, we’re Professor X, just on a different type of two wheels.
INVISIBILITY: More a hindrance than a help this one, we occasionally disappear from sight. That explains all those “SMIDSY” (“Sorry mate, I didn’t see you”) comments — it couldn’t possibly be that they didn’t bother to check their mirrors — and why motorists gesture to fellow drivers to pull out in front of us, even though that’s a swift way to get us squished. It also accounts for all those car doors that open inches away from our rotating front wheels.
TELEPORTATION: Some drivers are under the impression that cyclists never need to turn right. Should we make our way to the centre of the road, they beep, gesticulate and curse. This must be because we can actually teleport from street to street. Cycling around the city anti-clockwise is merely part of our superhero training regime.
SHAPE-SHIFTING: When we get shoved into the gutter or overtaken so tightly that our arm hairs vibrate, it must be because drivers think we can stretch ourselves à la Elastigirl from the Incredibles. Likewise, tailgating is fine — even in a lorry — because we can shape-shift out of the way if a vehicle comes too close.
TELEKINESIS: Obviously, cyclists must stay in their designated lane at all times — and should be honked at if they don’t — even if there’s a fat 4x4 parked in it. Apparently, we can move all obstacles with our minds.
INVINCIBILITY: The most dangerous belief that motorists exhibit — the one that unites almost all reckless driving — is that cyclists are unbreakable. Be aggressive! Be impatient! Overtake us just before turning left! But the reality is that drivers, wrapped in 1,300 kg of steel, are far closer to possessing Wolverine’s adamantium frame than we are. Three cyclists have been killed on London’s streets in the past month. So drivers: please stop treating us like we are invincible. We aren’t. We bleed just like you."
This morning my big sister Madelene and I went to a big outdoor area in the town she lives (and where I used to live during my uni years) called Skyttis. We ran the 10k loop, both on and off road, up and down and through some lovely surroundings. Our legs were a bit stiff as we went to the hospital gym yesterday but it was one of those runs who was great despite not being an easy run. Sometimes you don't have to feel or run great to have a great run.
When we got home we did a bit of a bounce on the trampoline, before eating a big breakfast.
24 Jul 2013
From Marathon To Duathlon
But how do you train for a duathlon?? Running I can do, cycling I can do but combined it's a whole other thing. A quick literature review on the esteemed Internet brings things such as 'brick sessions' to light then continues on to make it all sound like a Big Scary Event. - but fear not! RG Active and London Duathlon have sent me some tips and tricks that I thought I'd share with you guys on how to make your first duathlon experience a succes....:
FROM 5K RUNNER TO DUATHLETE SIX SIMPLE TRANSITION TIPS FROM LONDON DUATHLON AND RG ACTIVE
July 2013, London, UK: If the idea of a triathlon is a little overwhelming, but you are looking for more of a challenge than a simple 5k, 10k or even half marathon run this summer, duathlon is fast becoming the next step in the fitness calendar.
London Duathlon is the world’s largest duathlon. Held in the breath-taking surroundings of Richmond Park, the run-bike-run event offers people of all abilities the chance to race while on closed roads – ideal for beginners looking to take their first step into the world of multi-sport. This year the race will take place on Sunday 15 September. Contrary to popular belief, expensive kit is not required for a duathlon and there is no swimming element, it is just a simple run-bike-run event with a transition stage between disciplines. The distances of each activity vary according to the challenge, with some requiring only minimal training. To help novice duathletes on their way, London Duathlon together with race partner and duathlon/triathlon training expert, Dermott Hayes from RG Active (www.rgactive.com), have pulled together some top tips to overcome first time jitters:
1. Do your homework – ensure you spend some time researching the event. Look at the transport and parking for race day, building in plenty of time to get the race and not be rushing at the last minute. Try to speak to athletes that have completed the race previously and get their feedback
2. Get the basics – the basic equipment is essential. You will need a bike, a bike helmet, a pair of running shoes and some sports clothing to take part in. Spend some time making sure that your equipment is in good working order and get your bike serviced to prevent any unwanted mechanical issues. If your running shoes are more than one year old and you have used them regularly - it is time for a new pair. Good working equipment can often prevent injuries
3. Build using BRICK’s – What is a BRICK session? Basically a training session where you complete both running and cycling elements at least once back-to-back to give you that real race simulation session. A BRICK session can take any form, it could be a very long bike followed by a short run, or short bike followed by a long run, it could be a run/bike/run session, or even a multiple BRICK where you swap sports up to five or six times. There is no right and wrong
4. Train Transitions – the transition phase between cycling and running is the area that causes most anxiety for beginners. To help with this, spend time thinking through what ‘your’ method will be for transition – think about bike set up, the need to change footwear (if you wish) and how to lay this out for a smooth change over. Practice this time and time again
5. Get outdoors – Your race is outside, on roads and will most likely include hills, therefore it is important to train in this environment on a regular basis. Cycling outdoors is very different to training on an indoor bike; the hills, the road surface, the wind and the heat can all play a big part in how you ride your bike, it also means you are training on the same equipment that you will be racing on. Indoor training is helpful, and on certain training sessions where you really want to control the environment it is more advantageous, but nothing beats being outdoors
6. Be an early bird – on the race day it is important to get to the event early, this gives you an opportunity to register, set up your transition area and watch how the race operates without the stress of feeling rushed
London Duathlon offers five different challenges to suit abilities of all levels from complete beginner to experienced athlete:
· Super Sprint - ideal for beginners including a 5K run, 11K cycle and 5K run to finish; this race is achievable for all abilities.Entry £63.00 (up to 4th August) / £68.00 (up to 2nd September)*
· Sprint - suited to those that wish to try a duathlon and have a little more time to train for the 10K run, 22K cycle and 5K run.Entry £64.00 (up to 4th August) / £69.00 (up to 2nd September)*
· Classic – the blue ribbon duathlon distance, this race will give you the true feel of the event with a 10K run, 44K cycle and 5K run to finish. The course will test racers’ ability to climb. Training is needed for this challenge to make the most of the day. Entry £74.00 (up to 4th August) / £79.00 (up to 2nd September)*
· Ultra - starting with a 20K run, 77K cycle and closing with a 10K run, the Ultra is a real test of any endurance athlete. The Ultra distance is not to be taken lightly and is recommended for an experienced competitor who fancies a serious challenge. The undulating terrain offers a tough race that when finished will be a great achievement. Entry £109.00 (up to 4th August) / £114.00 (up to 2nd September)*
· Classic Relay - for the teamsters among us! A great opportunity to share the workload and have more fun doing so. This three person challenge is made up of a 10K run, 44K cycle and 5K run to finish, which each athlete taking on one discipline. The event is also attractive to those sports people that are specific cyclists or runners and can forge a strong team. Entry £120.00 (up to 4thAugust) / £120.00 (up to 2nd September)*
RG Active will be helping competitors get race ready with ability-specific training programmes and London Duathlon specific training sessions taking place on the event course in Richmond Park, which can be booked online at www.rgactive.com Athletes can take on an extra challenge by raising funds for London Duathlon’s charity partner Macmillan Cancer Support; as part of Team Macmillan. Every Team Macmillan member will receive a duathlon specific training guide and fundraising pack, Macmillan t-shirt, a Macmillan tri-belt, refreshments and a 15% discount voucher for Cycle Surgery. On event day, bikelab will be on-site offering duathletes bike maintenance throughout the race to make sure your London Duathlon experience is trouble free.Following the race, every finisher can visit Crewroom, London Duathlon’s Official Sportswear Partner, for their kit needs.
To enter London Duathlon or for further information regarding the event please visit www.londonduathlon.com Join other #duathlon participants and follow London Duathlon on Facebook and Twitter www.facebook.com/
londonduathlon or @londonduathlon
22 Jul 2013
Go Hard Or Go Home
This morning it was pretty cold and windy but at least the sun was out. I wont bore you with telling you about all the long stretches of flat road with relentless head wind or desciptions about how bloody heavy and slow that old bike is but I will tell you one thing - those 31k I did this morning were almost harder than the 150k I did with BOOM! Cycle team the other Saturday. I managed to ride at an average speed of 27k/hour, which I am very happy with, considering how hard work riding that bike is. Using that old bike will probably work to my advantage, as when I get on my darling road bike again it'll feel like a walk in the park.
21 Jul 2013
Race Report: Jämtland på Fötter
When we woke up on the morning of the race the weather was grim..... windy, rainy and cold, and those of you who know me also know that those conditions just aren't for me. We got to Östersund quite early (we live a two hour drive away), picked up our bibs and then we waited. Eventually it weas time to take the bus out to the start, as you started the race in a suburb and then ran into town, all the time along Storsjön. When the race started it was only a light drizzle coming down, but the winds had picked up slightly. The race started and right away we had quite a good pace. My cousin and sister had a lot of power in the legs, I didn't - I pretty much felt tired from the first step.
After a few miles we caught up with one of the pacers, the 1.45 pacer, and decided to stay with him. I struggled a bit as it was pretty undulating....east London is just too damn flat, but my sister and cousin they always run in hilly surroundings and they stayed strong. With four kilometers left you hit a big bridge and the wind up there was relentless, not to mention it was pretty steep uphill. My cousin and sister were a bit more energetic and ran strongly uphill while I ran slightly slower. The two kilometers from the bridge to the finishline I was pretty tired but kept up with the pacer and finished third in the family and on a time of 1.44.24. I was pretty happy with running sub 1.45 despite feeling tired and with my poor preparations for the race but I still left Östersund feeling very disappointed with myself and my race - why I do not know, it was just the feeling I had.
All in all it was a great race, it was just unlucky that the weater was so rubbish. It was a beautiful run and I thoroughly recommend it - just do a bit more trainig for it than I did if you want to run a decent time ;)
19 Jul 2013
The Day Before The Day
18 Jul 2013
Swedish Summer Rain
Yesterday I left a muggy and hot London and arrived in a cooler Sweden. This morning my big sister and I went for an easy 10k in the drizzle, the last run before my half marathon on Saturday and the perfect start on my holiday.
Now I'm sat with my feet up, watching the Tour det France...this is the life!
14 Jul 2013
Keep the Fun Between Your Legs
10 Jul 2013
Today I'm Testing: Fitness Playground
Today I jumped on the outdoor training bandwagon and went to my first ever Fitness Playground session. In true 'failed fitness blogger'-fashion I have no pictures, but there were lots of smiles and sweat, people were wearing lycra and the crime scene was the South Bank area around the Tate Modern. There, now you can paint your own mental pictures of the whole thing, but just make sure you make me look good okay?!
The session started out with a warm up jog to a little park where we did some warm up games (and one girl managed to possibly fracture her wrist falling over....but don't fear going to a session, it was a freak accident that could've happened anywhere and the Fitness Playground gents are not to blame) before we yet again set off running . The session continued like that for the majority of the hour it lasted, alternating between running and stopping to do bodyweight strength exercises at various urban locations. My favourite part was when Dan produce a harness and had us sprinting at full speed whilst being detained by the harness - it's safe to say that our legs were buuuurning.
The friendliness factor is high, which is appreciated by a country girl from the north of Sweden who usually thinks that London is a pretty unfriendly place. Dan and Pete were both very welcoming, taking care to learn all our names and introducing everyone to eachother. By doing several playful games and races people relaxed and there were lots of laughter in the group throughout the session (another London rarity....). It was a group of mixed backgrounds and abilities, and whilst I love going to places like Barry's Bootcamp and exerting myself with fellow driven and dedicated people, I really liked the more relaxed atmosphere and the banter at Fitness Playground.
So was there anything I missed? Not really, I thoroughly enjoyed the session, but I wouldn't have minded a little longer strength sessions. Now as you know I love running, but I also really like press ups and would have loved a few more of those. The session was varied and never dull, and before you knew it the hour was over. For those of you who would like a friendly yet effective form of exercise, Fitness Playground is definitely for you. For those of you who want an unfriendly and ineffective form of exercise I recommend a personality transplant. Over and out!
7 Jul 2013
Today's Ten Miles...
5 Jul 2013
The City is Your Gym!
Have a look at the Lunges & Lycra website for a review and to take advantage of the free week!
4 Jul 2013
Do The Shuffle
So how was the Hot Power Yoga? I enjoyed it way more than I thought I would and I was way more flxible than I'd ever imagined to be! The centre was welcoming and teacher was good, explaning each exercise and giving us alternatives to the more advanced ones. I did find the class to be slightly more advanced than I thought it'd be and I could have done with a slightly slower pace at the class, to really nail the poses but after an hour I did get into a flow, I might do the beginners workshop and intro course to get a better foundation for my practice and then be able to go to the yoga classes my gym offers....but I don't think I'll ever be a yoga fanatic.
The cycling I did on the other hand made me fall in love with cycling all over again....I kept a good pace and both the legs and the bike responded well! I now feel a lot better about the Ride London relay race but I will have to do a lot of cycling when home in Sweden at the end of July