By this time next week, the cycle will be done. I hope the training will have been enough!
I have been out on a few longer distance routes, heading in various directions around the city. Last weekend, I headed south to Dalkey/Killiney. I had no specific end point in mind, rather a timeframe of 2.5 hours and a goal to find some hills. And find them I did. I had a pleasant time exploring parts of the southside that I don’t know very well and admiring some of the houses in the area. I ended up doing a few loops around a small area as I basically pointed the bike upwards whenever I came to a crossroad. I also explored all the gears on my bike, figuring out the best time to switch between them and at what point the bike would creak rather than switch because I’d left it too late. I discovered too that I am not a natural descender as I prefer to keep the bike in check with the brakes slightly on, rather than descending as fast as gravity would like to take me. Given the traffic and the twists in the road, I felt this was the safer choice.
When I got home I discovered that I had cycled about 40km. Although this was longer than I had cycled before, it was shorter than I had hoped. On the other hand, according to my mapping website, I had climbed 177m with two climbs at a grade of >2.5%.
As I descended slowly, a more practiced cyclist flew past, chest low over his handlebars. I could only laugh in admiration. We were greeted by marching bands in Howth itself, but finally we got through the traffic and made good time on the way home. Another 35km, and another 143m climbed.
I had intended doing at least one training cycle that was >60km, to ensure I wasn’t being foolish in attempting 100km. However, my weekly totals have been fairly respectable, even if they have been broken up into shorter spins.
So this week, I will take it easy. My bike has gone in to the shop for a few niggles to be sorted out. I have yoga and zumba to keep me loose and on form. And I have another few days to boost the sponsorship total before heading up to Carlingford.