Updated October 25th 2019
Paddy Doran Cycling blog
Beware of the Winter cycling champion
He or she usually begins to make an appearance about this time following their long break since their last race.
That was on the second week of March way back in the distant past. Their enthusiasm is unlimited, next year is going to be their year!
You usually meet them just as you are recovering from the rigors of last season.
Just when you are looking forward to some easy spins to get your condition back into good shape.
They have probably been training since August or September. When you were just finishing up your last events, so they are absolutely flying.
Their bike is usually a giveaway. Its top of the range, stripped for racing with light wheels – tyres.
The full works in fact no hack bike is ever good enough for the winter racer.
400 watts, and Terrified old folk
Another giveaway is that they never stop at red lights in case their watts drop below 400.
You will notice the trail they leave behind of old folk standing in the middle of pedestrian crossings or traffic lights.
Waving their fists and cursing the cyclists as they disappear up the road.
Then there’s the screech of lorries and cars tyres and brakes as they do an emergency braking procedure.
Every time they go to the front they accelerate and accelerate and accelerate. You either let them away up the road or are dragged along with lungs burning.
Heart rates are through the ceiling. Covered in sweat (even though its freezing temperatures) and cursing to yourself with whatever little breath that you have left.
Every rise in the road the winter cycling warrior is gone! Away up the road like a Tour De France climbing specialist.
Looking back at the group scattered all over the road with a smile on their face. You struggle to maintain the speed as you wonder will I go home?
At this stage they really are beginning to believe that next year really will be their year, which encourages them to ride even harder.
The disappearing cycling training group
The size of the group that they train with usually peaks on the first day of training.
Numbers decline steadily over the next weeks as the more vulnerable and naïve riders in the group try to match them and crack.
Some sell their bikes – take up snooker or watching tv.
This is brought about from struggling home on their own on 39 x 25 after blowing up and getting dropped from the group.
This pattern will continue through January and maybe even as far as February.
Then just as other riders are getting really fit the Winter cycling champions season ends for the 20th successive year. .
And this is where the Winter cycling Warrior really excels.
1000 different excuses
There is a thousand different reasons / excuses for finishing their season just then…. work – girlfriend –sick dog – budgie dead – joining a monastery – don’t like the colour of the bike etc etc etc.
However next year is going to be the real year for them and they swear that they will get back training early for next season.!!.
Enjoy your Cycling!!
Paddy Doran Level 3 High Performance Cycling Coach at www.peakendurancecoaching.ie
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