Fitting training to work

Unless you are lucky enough to ride your bike professionally or can afford not to have to go to work, fitting in training can prove a real challenge. The more responsibilities you acquire, the harder it becomes to find the time. So, on a sliding scale, it’s not as tough for a single chap like myself to find the time as it is for someone who is married with young children.

But, as I occasionally have to work weekends, there are times when I risk missing out on those vital pre-season hours on the bike. So yesterday I hauled myself out of bed and down to training before starting my shift. Turns out I’m starting to feel a bit stronger than last year thanks to the two months I’ve got under my belt so far. Heck, I can even contemplate making an atempt at sprinting.

I ended up leading a group for the first time, mostly made up of newer riders and those trying to get back to form, apart from Brendan who always seems to be in annoyingly good shape. I’m not sure it serves anyone well to have me trying to lead a through-and-off training drill but it turns out I had plenty enough lung for shouting instructions and pedalling at something between steady and medium.

It would have helped if Brendan hadn’t decided we should chase down the mountain biker who came past us, squeaking away. Once we had let him go off and chase we regrouped and managed an fairly disciplined session, although I’m a bit worried that a couple dropped off before the end. We even caught Brendan on the final lap, although he was just pootling and waiting for us.

More importantly I felt like I was riding within myself at a pace I used to struggle with and that I could shift it up a gear when needed without being immediately on my limit. Which is good news for next weekend when there’s the beginners’ races on Sunday morning (see my previous post on it). Come and have a crack at it. Who knows, we might find ourselves going wheel-to-wheel in a sprint.

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  • Brendan

    By “annoyingly good shape” you mean “fat and slow”. And he was riding a mountain bike, with knobbies on and all, it was undignified to allow him to continue ahead if us. Mind you he proceeded to rip my legs off shortly after disclosing that he had competed in several editions of the Commonwealth Bank Classic about a decade ago. I wasn’t pootling along, I was trying to stuff my lungs back into my chest.

  • Alex

    Ha ha! That will teach you. Reminds me of the story of the Dynamo who was doing laps of the Park when a scruffy bloke on a tatty bike and wearing a pair of Doc Martens boots came past him and asked if he minded him riding with him. It took him a while to realise he was being hauled along by Graham Obree.