Monday, 24 March 2014

Another week zips by...

Crikey! That was another fast week.

We're quickly approaching the Easter holidays and thoughts are turning towards a week in the sun in Lanzarote with the family. The kids are looking forward to it almost as much as we are. They had a brilliant time at Club La Santa last year trying out loads of new sports, messing about in the pool and cosying up at night watching videos in the room after eating dinner outside at the terrace restaurants. Bliss!

Lorna and I spent hours last year biking on the great roads around Lanzarote and one thing we noticed was how other road users treated cyclists with great care and respect. All drivers over there overtook bikes as if we were a car - i.e. on the opposite side of the road giving us plenty of room. They know that if it is windy bikes will easily get blown across the road, or if road surfaces are poor, riders will sometimes need to quickly steer out of the way of holes in the road or poor road surfaces. No doubt they also know that many people visit their island to ride and a safe cycling experience will mean they will keep coming back.

Tragic news in the UK with yet another cyclist killed (Christian Smith, 38) on the roads whilst undertaking a charity event at 4 a.m. on a road in Kent. Seemingly an 18 year old girl (drunk) and a 19 year old man have been arrested for causing death by dangerous driving. Another family devastated by poor driving - my thoughts and condolences go out to them.

I watched an episode of Top Gear whilst on the turbo and the presenters poked fun at cyclists not knowing the difference between green and red (a reference to them jumping lights in the big cities) and the fact they should have worked harder so they could buy a car. Now I know Top Gear is basically a light-hearted entertainment show but this was a wasted opportunity to put across the dangers of biking. There are no doubt a small percentage of bikers (like drivers) that do not follow the highway code and they are putting themselves at risk. However, in an accident between a car and a cyclist you know who is going to come off worst...

We all need to share the same roads and really the only way for us to reduce accidents and improve cooperation is educating both groups... So drivers, give us a bit of space, don't drive by at 60 mph when you're only 10cm away from me... it's not big and it's not clever. Treat us like another vehicle and overtake sensibly - just imagine one of your family is riding the bike... And I'll promise to stick to the rules of the road. Deal?

Anyway, back onto training...

Another massive week under the belt - 16 hours and 20 minutes in total. Another good swim set - 7 seconds slower over 3.8km than last week (consistent!) and I even managed an outdoor run! Typical that I managed to pick pretty much an uphill 11km run from the garage back home, but the sun was out and it felt great. Maybe the 1.5 hour dog walk following the run wasn't the best idea but when I came to churn out another 3 hours and 15 mins on the turbo I felt absolutely shattered! I reduced the tempo set down from an hour in the middle of the ride to 30 mins and added in a much lower power recovery session instead - although I called it a day at 3 hours. Thankfully the turbo session the next day felt a bit easier and after about 1 hour and 40 mins on the treadmill I felt like I was flying. Would have been nice to have ventured out into the spring sunshine but Lorna was out on her bike and I was looking after the kids (well, in the same house at least ;-).

I'm sure the mental torture of the turbo and the treadmill will stand me in good stead in 18 weeks or so. In any case, I'm looking forward to getting outside for some 'real' training soon.

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