Sunday, 10 May 2009

Long (long) cycle

Had great intentions of going for a cycle this morning with the local triathlon club, but unfortunately I'm not a creature of the morning. So after getting up at almost 1pm, faffing around for and hour or two (letting breakfast settle) I set off just before 3pm with the intention of repeating the last cycle I'd done with the triathlon club.

I decided to start from home this time (as I was on my own) and decided to pick up the route about 20km's in. The original ride was 75km (including a tea-stop) and I hoped to at least get that distance in, if not closer to the 100km mark (and without the tea-stop). I know the area where I was to join the route pretty well, as I cycle as it's a regular route during my lunch cycles and figured I could pick up some extra km's here on a hilly route (by Cambridge standards). Hence you'll see some strange weaving up and down to the A428 on the map below.

It was a lovely day for a ride, slighly windy in parts (it's so flat here and the landscape is generally exposed it's hard to get away from wind, even on the calmest of days). I'd planned on an easy ride, especially as I knew I'd be in the saddle for at least 3-4 hours, so I tried to keep the heart rate lower than normal.

The outward run was definitely into the wind - it definitely sped up noticeably when I kinda turned for home (far left point on the map). I was happy enough with my pace to this point, averaging just under 25kmph which was good considering the lower HR. I was struggling a little with boredom though, but I guess that's hard to avoid on such long rides.

As I made it back towards Cambridge, I had to get my old nemesis a call - Barrington Hill - I'd done this hill numerous times last year in my training for Gael Force, so this'd be my first attempt at it this year. It definitely was as hard as last year, if not harder - but I had 70km's behind me at that point.

The thoughts of another hour in the saddle at this point weren't really tempting, but I took the longer route home when I came to the crossroads just after the hill. I done some of the time trial route I'd done last year - seemed easier but I wasn't going flat out and the km's were counting down - soon I'd less than 10 miles to go.

By the time I'd got up to 88km though, and I could see Addenbrookes Hospital and Cambridge so close, I figured I'd call it a day and head straight for home. I'm glad I did, though it was tough not to give those last few km's a go - but I'd have ended up going around in circles trying to make up the distance and just getting annoyed. As it is, I'm absolutely delighted with the ride.

Distance - 92.5km
Time - 3hrs 39m 15s
Average Speed - 25.5kmph
Average HR - 14bpm
Calories burned - 4842 (can't be right - can it?)

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