It looks as though my season of recovery is ever so slowly drawing to a close. I’ve been waiting for some dramatic development to write about, but instead there have been imperceptibly small steps of progress over the last six months or so. It’s only looking back that I can see how far I’ve come.
It’s been a very different season, as I’ve not really been able to plan anything. I’ve just had to rely on being really consistent in my riding, trusting that the progress will come. however slowly.
Unexpectedly it’s been a good season with a number of highlights:
30 Days of Biking: Such a simple concept. Ride your bike every day in April. This was probably the foundation of my recovery, as I got into the habit. This included using the rollers at unusual times, commuting when it wasn’t an easy option and a couple of really wet rides! Great fun though and good to feel part of something much bigger. Tweeting pictures of my commute and getting responses from around the world was certainly an encouragement.
Perfecting the rollers: This time last year I had never even been on rollers. Learning to ride them whilst injured was a bit of a leap of faith. Riding a fixed wheel track bike meant that my injured leg was carried round, which felt odd to say the least. Mastering a new skill is always satisfying and I have to say that I now really enjoy getting the headphones on and ‘rolling along’.
Organising an open time trial: This was another first. Not only for me, but also for the Common Lane Occasionals. Our first open time trial. Went really well, so I’m now organising two for the coming season. Watch this space.
Women’s Tour of Britain: Acting as a marshal for the women’s Tour Of Britain (and the Tour Series) in Stoke was great! Being o the inside of an event gives you a whole new perspective. Even got to look after Lizzie Armistead’s bikes (and make sure Marianne Vos’s cat got a good parking space!)
L’Eroica: I was only partially recovered for this one, so volunteered for the short route. We were sweepers, so had to ride behind the last people on the road, offer assistance and then let marshals know that the last riders had passed. Sounds simple and it was a great day out. Most of the riders wanted to make the most of their day out, so 27 miles took around 10 hours to complete!
21 Minute 10: This was when I knew things were starting to go in the right direction. A good day on the superfast V718 course near Hull meant cruising at over 30mph for a large part of the ride. Putting together the preparation and previous events was pretty good too. 21:51 for 10 miles should get me into most events that I fancy this season.
Track Legs: Reduced power on one side and some time away from the track meant that I had to go through the accreditation process again. First time on the boards for over a year was pretty terrifying. As the power came back, so did my skills and confidence and I’ve really enjoyed getting back into SQTs at Manchester.
Strava KOM: A little bit of planning and a good turn of speed and I gained my first STRAVA King of the Mountain!
Now I’m busy planning for a really good 2017. Wonder what the highlights will be?