I woke late but my leg felt good so I’d be out on the bike. I was too late to meet up with my mates who were going over to Whiteways so why not head there too. I started slow worried that I’d aggravate any damaged leg muscle but all seemed good so I slowly cranked it up. I often complain that mountain biking is not hard compared to road riding but it is more down to the way you ride. It is definitely too easy to ease up off road blaming the terrain, thinking technical instead of speed. But it is more down to habit and most of my mountain biking these days is relaxed.
I found myself riding hard as, unlike last weekend, I wasn’t worried about having enough in the tank to get to the top. I got in some good climbs, from the Gate House at Arundel roundabout to the top of Rewell Hill was one long easy hill (127m gain 4.99km average 3%) so I could really try to ride fast. I then crossed the A29 to enter Whiteways and climbed to the top of The Denture, mostly single track so slower until I got onto the fire road (79m gain, 2.08km 4%), then the next one was the climb from North Stoke to Spring Head Hill near Rackham trig point (187m gain, 4.72km 4%). At one point on this climb I had my head down and was so focused on my pace that I didn’t hear the two riders coming down on me. Sorry guys, but was I going up about the same speed that you were going down? Albeit in three sections, I rode the equivalent of a 3nd category TdF climb.
Now this might all sound a bit roadie and not much fun but I really needed to ride on the rivet after last week when I had to make sure that I didn’t redline it on the climbs. Of course I rode as much single track as I could which was awesome in the slippery conditions but it was the climbing that got me going today. After last weekends 405km and 8400m my legs certainly felt good. Each to their own!
Any ideas on where to watch the Olympic test race next Sunday?