Today marks the end of the first week since travelling to the cottage. It also marks the end of a solid week of just salads for both lunch and dinner. This month, I plan to lose several pounds and get to my optimum cycling weight. I am close and, after this week, a few pounds closer. I can’t weigh myself here but have noticed my shorts are fitting more loosely around the waist. I am looking forward to introducing other items into my diet – veggie burgers, tofu wraps and frittatas. It will still be a lower calorie and fat reduced diet. No sweets. No desserts. No snacks. Little fat. Little bread. Low fat milk and cheese. And, a lot of fresh vegetables and fruit.
This week I have also reacquainted myself with familiar rides, rides that I have enjoyed for over 40 years. Out the back door, I can head west, east and north onto quiet secondary country roads. There are 4 loops I enjoy. The Beaverton Loop. The Brechin Loop. The Lake Dalrymple Loop. And, the Canal Lake loop. They are each about 45-50 km and I have ridden each of them this week. And, because they overlap one another, I can include more than one loop into a workout depending on how I am feeling and how far I want to go. By mixing it up, I can configure a ride anywhere from 35 km to 100 km or more.
This week was about getting settled. Opening the cottage. Recovering from jet lag. Revisiting familiar roads. Adjusting my diet. And, finding my legs. I completed over 300 km at a moderate pace, spinning at a high cadence. Next week, I’ll introduce a couple of longer rides, some hill repeats and a sprint workout. Next week, I will work harder but do approximately the same distance.
Cycling in this part of the country is a treat. There is little, if any, traffic. The roads, for the most part, are in excellent shape. There are several “rough” sections, particularly to the north but even they are manageable. The terrain is flat. There are a few short, very steep climbs but this is flat country compared the the Pacific Northwest. But, particularly this time of year, there is generally a wind ranging anywhere from 15-30 kph. Even on the flat, a 30 kph headwind wind feels like a long, difficult, never ending climb. Every day this week, I have experienced wind. Some more than others but every ride I had wind. Sometimes to my back helping but mostly a headwind hurting slowing progress.
I don’t mind the wind. It’s like climbing but, in some ways worse. It is relentless. There is no descent on the other side. And, sometimes it’s hurting the whole time out. I can’t lose sight of the fact that this is a “training camp”. The wind won’t let me.
I brought the bike to train and, I have not been disappointed.