What my training has largely taught me is that road cycling is an exercise in humility. One day your legs feel amazing and endless and you find yourself flying up 1500m of elevation. And then the next day, you get passed by a man on a derelict BMX, who’s wearing rubber boots and a backwards helmet.
There are some marked differences between my previous goal – a flat, 60km course where the emphasis was on it being a community, not a competitive, ride – and my current goal, the Whistler GranFondo. The GranFondo is a 122km route with 2000m, give or take, of elevation gain. And it’s definitely a race. People can win money, for Pete’s sake.
June 2–8 was Commuter Challenge week. As one might imagine, this is an event in which MEC staff are creative and willing participants. The group I hooked up with for our epic commute to work met at 7am, and proceeded to ride for 31.5km and gain 348m of elevation*.
Overall, I feel like things are really starting to click with my training schedule. Last weekend, I did my 50km long ride in a pair of chamois shorts, arm warmers, and a jersey, and it was amazing. I felt fast and light and was acknowledged by at least three roadies. Granted, it was three very subtle nods, but I know they were saying “Welcome to the club, friend!” Read more…
The thing about training in Vancouver is that hills are inevitable. My quads have confirmed that. And the further you ride, the more you seem to encounter. Thankfully, the Ride Don’t Hide 60km route doesn’t have any crazy climbs in it, but much like the speed work that my training program calls for, I’m sure that incorporating a hill or two into my training will help build strength and endurance.