Tag Archives: L2b

Week ???

Well I’ve lost all track of time and all momentum, week 9, 10? Who knows. 

What I do know is that London to Brighton is just two weeks away. Yep, 74 miles of mud, gravel, road, ups and downs is just two weeks away. And I’m not gonna be there. I think. 

Basically having just come back from two weeks holiday and about three weeks off the bike dealing with a hip dysplasia flair up before that, I’m having to give serious consideration to whether I’m able to ride the L2B. 

I’ve just been out on my bike, a gentle 8 miler, mostly off road, but 74 miles? Hmmn. I reckon I could do it. But I’m not really in shape. It would be a suffer fest. And could balls up my hips for another three/four weeks after. I’m not really prepared to go through that agony again just for a t-shirt and a finishers medal, no matter how shiny it may be. 

I think setting goals with my hip dysplasia is counter intuitive. Yes goals are good (and I wouldn’t have nailed the South Downs epic earlier this summer if it wasn’t for my L2B goal) but the commitment (and expense) kinda writes a cheque that my hips can’t always cash. 

I’ll see how I feel when the weekend in question comes around, I did after all complete the South Downs epic and managed (just) all the hills over what was a seriously hilly 40 miler. 

But my thinking now is more along the lines of just get out and ride, without ambitious goals pencilled in the diary. Sure I’ll still have goals and still will attempt some ambitious rides as hip pain allows, but they will be on my own terms, at a time and date of my choosing and with the option to back out without being out of pocket. 

And that (to me at least) seems more in keeping with the ethos of mtb anyway – of riding (and finding) your own path, rather than a pre set, signposted and marshalled course. 


Week 6 

Halfway through week 5 I’d be struggling with niggling pain in first my right, then left hip which had limited time on the bike. Frustratingly I’d also got a shiny new stead which I was itching to introduce to my local trails. 

Rather foolishly I pushed on past the niggles, took the new bike for a thrash then attempted a bikepacking trip earlier this week. Result, slight niggles turned into major discomfort and I’ve hardly ridden in nearly two weeks. 

I’m now a week out from a two week holiday abroad (with limited chances for biking) and then just over two weeks before London to Brighton. As it stands I’m not feeling confident. 

I’m frustrated as things were going well, I thought I’d be managing the distances and ride frequency well and my hips had been largely holding up. 

This last week however has left me lacking confidence in not only my fitness but also in my hips and whether they are up to the challenge I’ve asked of them. 

I’m certainly not going to make any decisions at this stage but I need to give serious consideration to the L2B. I know that with care, the right training and nutrition I can cover some serious ground, the 40 mile South Downs epic in June proved that, but perhaps I’ve just not got given myself enough time to build a solid base foundation of miles under my belt. 

As it stands now on Sunday, both hips are pain free and I’ll try some gentle rides out next week but I guess only time will tell if I’m feeling up to L2B… 

Week 5 – food, injuries and a new bike

I always struggle with lunch. Not the eating it part, more the logistics. 

I’m not that organised so making a prepared lunch seems like a chore and as I’m often out and about between offices for work, storage and transport become an issue – no one wants a chicken salad that’s been sat in the car all morning. 

fridge required

So yea, it’s a hassle but buying lunch every day gets expensive and there’s no guarantee you’ll be able to pick up something suitably nutritious. 

save some for lunch

I’ve therefore made a conscious effort this week to do a little planning ahead. Nothing revolutionary, just simply cook/prepare a healthy evening meal and make sure there’s enough for lunch the next day. No extra work, no extra cost and means I’m using more of my fruit/veg/salad rather than it going off a couple of days after foraging for it in Tesco. 

Highlight of the week was picking up this beauty… 
I’ve written some words about my first impressions here but if you just want a quick review – it’s bloody awesome! 

plus size assisted PRs!

Training hampered by a slight twinge in my hamstrings early on in the week which wasn’t helped by over enthusiastic desire to get out on new bike. Rested up since Thursday which has been frustrating but I know is the
right thing to do. 

Certainly one of the frustrations of hip dysplasia is I never know whether it’s my hips causing referred pain or whether I’ve actually injured something. I keep getting recurrences of what feels like hamstring strains and will certainly look at positioning on my new bike but it’s annoying given the work I’ve put in to build up my core and hip strength lately, not to mention the improvements to my diet. 

Looking at the times of some of the Strava segments ridden on my new bike however and I’ve not exactly been taking it easy, perhaps I need to slow it down a little… 

Week two round up 

Off to a flyer this week, gentle strength workout on Tuesday was quickly followed by a “drills” ride Wednesday.

The drills in question were single leg efforts, essentially pedalling with most of the effort going through one leg, focussing on good form. 

This was done on flat trails but I still couldn’t resist a cheeky effort on one of my local killer hills, knocking 20 odd seconds off my pb! The hard work’s obviously paying off. 

Dusted off the Swiss ball on Thursday for some wall sits. Utter torture, sweat starts to pour from anywhere it can the second I assume the position and the whole body shakes uncontrollably in protest. Surely anything that unpleasant must be good for me right…? 

No bikepacking adventures this week as I’m planning a trip next week, instead I rounded off the week with a solid tempo ride Friday and a two hour ride Sunday. 

Slightly down on overal duration having skipped Saturday’s strength workout, really wasn’t feeling up to it and sometimes you just gotta listen to your body. Pace on the bike is good though, averaging around 9.5mph and feeling good with it too, Sunday’s 20 mile blast felt quick without really giving it the beans so certainly getting fitter and quicker. 

Round up 

First full proper week of new training plan and surprise surprise I’ve not stuck to it! I did three strength sessions and three rides as planned but as is often the case life got in the way meaning I didn’t get out on the bike Friday so two of the rides were sandwiched back to back, either side of an overnight bivvy/bikepacking trip, hardly the end of the world! 

reduced volume compared to previous weeks but a bit more focussed

Strength work is going well, legs feel strong although still niggly with twinges, mostly in left leg but certainly manageable. 

Upper body also improving, discovered much to my amazement that I can now do pull ups – albeit with somewhat dodgy form – for probably the first time since I was a kid, well chuffed! 

Cant’t wait for more of this on the Bear Bones 200

In other news, I’ve bagged a spot on the Bear Bones 200, a bikepacking/endurance mtb ride through the Cambrian mountains in Wales. It’s off-road, in Wales, in October and only two weeks after L2B,  should be epic!