A full four laps in the steady group, without getting dropped. Yes, we got lapped by two groups, although we may have unlapped ourselves from the second on the final stretch, but I made it round without having to do a solitary trudge to the cafe as i usually do.
It’s a small achievement but one that feels oh-so-very good. With three months to go, I finally feel like I have a half decent chance of being able to make it round the Etape. Now it starts to get serious as I look to start working on climbing hills faster and generating more sustained power all round.
I’m pretty sure I can manage at least 110km already, or about 4 hours in the saddle at a steady pace. To aim for a decent time round the Etape I’ll need to be able to do double that time in the saddle with the added pain of climbing for long stretches and relatively slow speeds.
I might go out tomorrow and take a longish run round the Surrey Hills if the weather holds out. Since Saturday morning I’ve been out on the bike three times and got soaked to the bone twice as a light shower turned into a heavy downpour with no sign of stopping. I actually don’t mind getting wet, it’s the wind and cold I can’t stand.
Fortunately spring seems to have sprung, judging by last weekend’s milder weather which meant that I could ride without my gloves on sunday as I pottered gently into town and back for a Mother’s Day lunch. I’d forgotten how slim my handlebars and levers are without gloves on and how nice it feels to have a bit of air on the backs of the hands.
By my reckoning I’ve done about 110km since Satruday morning which puts me on target for a good week distance-wise as it’s only Monday now. A midweek ride and a couple of shorter trips and I’ll be ready for another longer session at the weekend.
P.S. You may have noticed a few extra links on the right of the page, I hope you find them useful and interesting.