In 2013 I did my first 24-hour cycle race at Le Mans on the famous Bugatti Circuit. Solo. Straight into the deep end and I absolutely loved it. This year I competed at Revolve24, a similar 24-hour race at Brands Hatch in Kent. This time as a mixed team of 4 and again I got a real buzz out of it. Both are fun, but here are some of the key differences I found between racing solo or as a team.
A big 12-hour TT PB just two days after my last DVT medication… Getting closer to that magic Beryl Burton record, yet still so far away…
The Breckland 12 Hour TT was scheduled just two days after taking my last anticoagulants for Deep Vein Thrombosis which had put a halt to my 2016 season before it even really started. What better way for a comeback than going straight for a 12-hour time trial?! I didn’t have any hopes for a good result given I had only been able to train on the turbo for months with much reduced training hours. The goal was completing rather than competing and, above all, to enjoy myself. And I sure did enjoy myself; I had a ball! My legs felt fine after the race, but my jaw muscles were a little sore from all the smiling (and the odd grimacing).
I couldn’t have wished for a more competitive and fun line-up with Jill Wilkinson, Bronwen Ewing and my lovely team mate Katja Rietdorf, the 2016 12-hr National Champ.
Katja on the…
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Earlier this year I wrote a blog post on ‘Conquering Cramp‘ in which I commented on my troubles with cramp, previous strategies, the results of a sweat test and the personalised hydration plan I had received for using Precision Hydration, electrolytes that match how I sweat. Unfortunately DVT then got in the way. I have since used them for indoor turbo training, but this weekend I finally had a chance to test them in earnest at a long race.
“When can I resume my cycling training?” and “How soon can I race again?” were two of the key questions on my mind when I was first diagnosed with #DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) in June. I knew I was not going to get the answers I wanted, being Little Miss Impatient it was never going to be soon enough. Each DVT case is different, but perhaps this blog about how I approached my slow journey back to race fitness, can give some useful insight to others unfortunate enough to be faced with the same questions.
This race was the one I had been looking forward to for so long. It should have been my ‘A’ race for 2016, the one race I wanted to do well in more than any other event. Sadly, I found myself by the side of the road come race day. While DVT stopped me from competing, it didn’t stop me from supporting and cheering others!
Josephine Perry from Performance in Mind recently did an in-depth interview with me on goals, setbacks and ever bigger challenges. Below is just an excerpt. Follow the source link for the full interview.
“It really doesn’t matter what other people say or think. They won’t be there to ride the bike for you. You have to make sure you show up to that start line feeling confident and positive and eager to do what you love and have been looking forward to for so long. The longer the race, the more mental strength is what really can make the difference. And for mental strength you need self-belief, not anxiety”.