Manchester Mini Sportive – Cross Chained Catastrophe

During the first week of April 2017, I got an email from Evans Cycles which was well targeted. I’d fancied doing a longer ride without the hills that Allez Prestwich rides entail. I was delighted that the Trafford store was hosting a 50km sportive through the lanes of Cheshire. I registered before setting off to work and it only cost £10. My spirits were lifted for the rest of the week.

Continue reading “Manchester Mini Sportive – Cross Chained Catastrophe”

Manchester Mini Sportive – Cross Chained Catastrophe
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Improvers’ Plan – Week 4

As you can tell I managed to get out on a longer ride this weekend. The weather was cold, we had a little snow and I had the pleasure of seeing a few fellow cyclists I hadn’t seen since autumn 2016.

My first club ride of 2017 with Allez Prestwich was on Sunday 22nd January 2017. The GPX file is available for download from ridewithgps. The ride’s route was shortened on the day, due to the snow and ice threatening to become an issue. Continue reading “Improvers’ Plan – Week 4”

Improvers’ Plan – Week 4
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Improvers’ Plan – Week 3

I have actually been finding it easier to fit in the mid-week rides, relative to the longer rides at the weekend. A flat tyre on Friday evening’s commute meant Saturday involved swapping out tubes and tyres on my rear wheel, and this lead to various other repairs and tinkering. The flat tyre was due to the failure of a glueless patch. A further annoyance was Parcel force not actually doing what I told them. They took the spare parts I needed to my local post office instead of delivering the parcel to my neighbours.

I ended up buying the 27.5 x 1.5 Schwalbe Marathon Plus slick MTB tyres. Initially the ride felt harsher. As they are narrower I have to run them at a  higher pressure but now I don’t notice the difference. Continue reading “Improvers’ Plan – Week 3”

Improvers’ Plan – Week 3
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New Years Resolution

Several of the Allez Prestwich (AP) riders have set goals for 2017. I already had the goal to do my first century, but I got carried away and set myself another goal. To cycle 4000 km in 2017. Given I managed over 1000km of recreational rides in 2016 and as most weeks I do 30 km commuting, I felt this goal was manageable but still challenging. I need to average about 77 km each week.

AP’s 2016 retrospective is a good read and makes me want to join them on more rides next year.

New Years Resolution
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Improvers’ Plan – Week 2

I have really enjoyed week two’s training and I’m proud I’ve hit triple digits with the distance ridden. Week 2 is summarised as mainly night rides with one in the fog, a nice Sunday ride before lunch and trying to shoe horn in my training around work. I apologise that this post has ended up being quite long but there were lots of rides and a few revelations into heart rate training. There’s even am ‘interval timer’ app recommendation buried in this post. Continue reading “Improvers’ Plan – Week 2”

Improvers’ Plan – Week 2
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Punctures – Park to the Rescue

Today’s ride was endurance training (Strava Ride) and I got a puncture, it really took the shine off what was turning out to be a great ride despite the fine rain. Until recently punctures seldom were a problem on my commuter bike. Now I’m doing longer bike rides that take me further away from home I always take the essentials, as I explained in a recent Bike Ride Essentials post.

Yet again the Park GP-2 Super patch has come to the rescue. I’ve tried other glueless patches in the past on my daughters bike and they failed within 24 hrs. Yes they get you home, but then you have to change the tube or patch it properly. It’s more hassle and I’d rather do the job right first time. Continue reading “Punctures – Park to the Rescue”

Punctures – Park to the Rescue
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10 min Recovery Meal – Pink Eggs

We are repeatedly told about the 20 minute window after a long bike ride, where taking on easily digestible protein is helpful to our muscles ability to recover. I must admit I am partial to a Chocolate High5 Protein Recovery powder if mixed with milk after a 90+ minute ride. I consider them a little reward and they are relatively easy to prepare.

I normally buy my energy gels in Race packs when heavily discounted, so I generally have a small handful of hydration tablets and recovery powders loitering in my cupboard. Earlier this week when I got home after an evening commute / low intensity training session (Strava Bonus Ride) I arrived home around 8pm and I was ravenous. I was running low on milk and couldn’t be bothered to go out to get some and didn’t want to have my protein powder with water (Yuk). Continue reading “10 min Recovery Meal – Pink Eggs”

10 min Recovery Meal – Pink Eggs
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Put Your Heart Into It

When I registered for the Tour de Manc (TdM) last week, I saw a countdown timer indicating a little more than 160 days to go before the event. This got my mind focused on training.

I am a British Cycling member, so their website was the first place I looked for advice. They have several free training plans and I opted for their 12 week (84 days) ‘Improvers’ plan, meant for regular cyclists wanting to get ready for their first 100 km bike ride. Although I intend to do the 100 mile ‘Full Manc’. I hope to shoe horn in a second training program prior to the TdM. The reason for training to do something I have already accomplished (100 km Half Manc 2016) is mainly to learn the method of following a structured training plan. Continue reading “Put Your Heart Into It”

Put Your Heart Into It
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Tour de Manc Mistakes #2

Christmas Eve 2016 and I have just registered for the second Tour de Manc 2017. I pre registered so was able to secure a ticket this morning. In this post I want you to learn from my biggest TdM mistake. Back in 2016 on the big day, I was nursing a shoulder injury from a recent car accident but medication and physiotherapy had helped me overcome that problem. I was not the last rider to arrive at the first feed station, but I was the last to leave and the reason I didn’t discover until a week later was a revelation. Continue reading “Tour de Manc Mistakes #2”

Tour de Manc Mistakes #2
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Bike Fit Basics – Knee Pain

Several months ago I watched a really useful video, which gave me insight into the possible causes of my knee pain when cycling. It helped me understand how moving a saddle affects the knee and the strain that this joint can undergo when pedaling

When I started riding longer distances and especially when Allez Prestwich (AP) Cycling Club introduced me to some of the local hills they love so much, I found that I got a few aches and pains in my legs. Continue reading “Bike Fit Basics – Knee Pain”

Bike Fit Basics – Knee Pain
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