RM2LC training ride 25

Another ride with Tzvetie today, this time in very nice weather. We set off at 7, heading first towards the Dassetts where we did a couple of hills and then towards Napton on the Hill and Birdingbury. A challenging 50 mile loop, in beautiful countryside and quiet roads (especially this early on a Sunday).

http://www.strava.com/activities/174752815/

 

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RM2LC training ride 24

After having a look at the weather forecast for tomorrow, my friend Tzvetie and I decided to go for a longish afternoon ride today “before the weather gets bad”. Of course in the meantime the forecast for today changed from dry to light rain and naturally around mile 20 of our ride, it started raining heavily. Anyway, I will stop whining since it was good to train a bit in bad weather riding in case the weather on the day of the challenge is not nice.

The route was a 60 miler in the north Cotswolds area, and included two good hill climbs (Lark Stoke and Chipping Campden Hill). In the first half of the route I felt generally tired and was dreading the upcoming climbs, but once we reached them I was ok. In the second half, and after we got soaked to the bone I actually felt better (maybe it was due to hiding behind Tzvetie for most of the way). In any case, I am very glad we did the ride despite the bad weather.

http://www.strava.com/activities/174041547

If you would like to sponsor me and support my charity, Ambitious about Autism, please click here!

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RM2LC training ride 23

Today’s ride was on the same route as last Sunday’s one, however at a different pace and effort level. In particular, today I did around 65 mins of hard effort (sweetspot or even threshold) and the good weather conditions helped me to get a personal best on the particular route. So, ~24 miles at 19.8 mph.

http://www.strava.com/activities/173174184

I am sorry I haven’t posted anything about autism lately, but today I found online a really nice extract from the book “The Reason I Jump: One Boy’s Voice From The Silence Of Autism” written by the 13 year old Japanese boy Naoki Higashida. In the extract (which you can find if you scroll down in this link), Naoki describes how he perceives several everyday life situations and the reason for certain reactions and behaviours of autistic children. It is really enlightening and touching.

Please consider supporting my charity Ambitious about Autism, by donating any amount of money at my fundraising page!

 

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RM2LC training 22

Another TT today, and today’s course was the relatively fast K10/10A. I feel that my effort today was harder than any of my previous TT’s, however the headwind in the middle part of the course which is normally the fastest, prevented me from getting a personal best. Nevertheless, I am quite pleased with my time of 26’31” and looking forward to the next one.

Warm up

http://www.strava.com/activities/172660514

TT

http://www.strava.com/activities/172660536

Cool down

http://www.strava.com/activities/172660492

but first, let me take a selfie :P

but first, let me take a selfie 😛

On another matter, Rapha has now announced the finalized route for the challenge. 217.5 miles with around 10000 ft elevation gain, the majority of which is in the first quarter of the route. Bring it on!

http://ridewithgps.com/routes/5388940

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RM2LC training ride 21

After yesterday’s very long ride, today my legs, hands, wrists, back, neck, basically everything felt very tight. In such cases one can either do nothing and just rest or do some kind of active recovery in order to flush the lactic acid out of the legs. I chose the second option, so I went for a 25 mile recovery ride in the afternoon. The pace was not particularly slow, but wasn’t fast either so now I feel a lot better. 

http://www.strava.com/activities/171790668

spot the two planes flying in formation, Princethorpe

spot the two planes flying in formation, Princethorpe

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RM2LC training ride 20

Long ride today in the great company of my friends Paul and Tzvetie. We set off at 7:00 and headed towards Worcester and then the Malvern hills. We settled at a decent pace (which is a good candidate for the pace on the day of the challenge) until we arrived at the hills. I’ve never been there before and I found it to be a beautiful scenic place with fantastic views towards both England and Wales. The climb is actually not so bad, around 3 miles at 4%, so it allows you to settle in a comfortable pace and enjoy the views. After two quick stops one at a nice spring to refill our bottles and one at a little cafe close to Little Malvern, we started our way back heading towards Evesham (to avoid Worcester’s traffic) at more or less the same pace as on our way out.

I felt quite good throughout the ride and I think this was due to the very good weather, keeping our stops short and eating a lot while on the bike (i consumed 4 gels, 3 breakfast bars and two litres of energy drink). So 117 miles today (the longest I’ve ever ridden in one go) at 16.7 mph with something left in the tank at the end. Fantastic route and great day out on the bike!

http://www.strava.com/activities/171142638

Please consider supporting my great charity Ambitious about Autism, by donating here!

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RM2LC training ride 19

Today I was faced with the choice of either cleaning my bike or doing a TT so naturally I went with the latter option. So, a 10 mile time trial with LC&AC and the course was one of the fast ones in our area K10/10F. Unfortunately it was a bit windy and this resulted in slow times. Nevertheless, I felt good on the bike and was able to push a bit harder towards the end (probably due to a bit of tail wind in the finishing straight). My time was 26’40” which is more or less the same as all my previous TT’s this year and 47″ off my personal best which is annoying.

Warm up:

http://www.strava.com/activities/170437820

Time trial:

http://www.strava.com/activities/170437822

Cool down:

http://www.strava.com/activities/170437804

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RM2LC training ride 18

Today’s ride was a mostly flat, brisk 30 miler with my friend Owen. A very nice route, passing through some beautiful villages in the area between Leamington and Rugby (maybe the fantastic sunny weather helped a bit with everything looking beautiful). Despite the sunshine, the ride was rather windy hence the relatively low average pace of 17.7mph. I felt quite good throughout the ride and I was able to do some hard efforts on a couple of climbs that resulted in a couple of personal bests.

http://www.strava.com/activities/169901984 

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RM2LC training ride 17

After a week off the bike due to my phd graduation and having my family over in the UK, today I found a bit of time to go for a quick spin. During this week, I got bitten by some sort of insect which caused my left ankle to swell to double its normal size, so I was a bit worried about whether this would affect my training. Thankfully, I didn’t feel any particular discomfort and I could pedal as usual.  The ride was 30 mins with no structure, and with several short efforts to loosen my legs.

http://www.strava.com/activities/169101304

Today, I am also posting a very informative article by Alex Lowery (link found from Ambitious about Autism’s Facebook page), who gives his views and personal experience about what is called ‘stimming’ (short for ‘self-stimulating behaviour’- to use his words some strange movements that people with autism spectrum often do). Alex describes very nicely what people with autism think while stimming and why he thinks it’s a necessary part of a person’s with autism life.

 

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RM2LC training ride 16

Today’s ride was literally a ‘Tour of Troodos mountains’. Started on the east of the highest peak in Cyprus (Mt Olympos, Troodos 1952m), in Agros village, the route descended towards the south and then followed the ‘wine route’ which rolls westwards through some of the wine villages of the Limassol district (Pelendri, Moniatis, Pera Pedi, Mandria – my late grandmother’s birthplace, Platres and Fini east to west). Then the route ascended northwards towards the villages Lemithou, Pedoulas and Prodromos before a long descend to Kakopetria. A long steep climb towards Kyperounta and then some rolling terrain (passing Chandria village) closed the loop and led back to Agros village.

A very hard route, with a scary descend (towards Pelendri), a very nice descend (towards Kakopetria) and everything else being more or less climbing. I felt generally well except during the last 5 mile ascend to Kyperounta, during which I thought I was melting due to the heat! A couple of kind people offered me water during the ride which was nice. The roads were quiet and with mostly good quality tarmac. So 55 miles with 6500ft climb in around 5 hours.

http://www.strava.com/activities/165798373

I am VERY grateful to the latest anonymous donor, thank you whoever you are! If you would also like to support my great charity Ambitious about Autism, please donate here.

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