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Arrivederci….almost!

IMG_0138This Wednesday night I’ll be heading off to Italy for a long rest in the sunshine and a chance to do nothing but ride my bike, think, watch the world go by and post a card.

The terrible tragedy of the earthquake in Amatrice in the nearby province of Rieti looms large and I was really shocked me when I saw the news pop up on a screen. It’ll be a very long time before life returns to anything like normal for those people affected, which will be thousands. My thoughts will be with those people and I will do what I can when I’m there.

Last week my cycling almost returned to normal as I completed over 250km on the bike including  one ride of 107km. It hurt a bit but it  was mostly good and somehow I think its incredible that I’m able to make this trip when I look back. Thanks all for the encouragement especially on the Mr Turners Bakery ride in the rain of last Sunday.

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This week I’ve backed off a bit, just doing just shorter rides with some time on the trainer. However I did two memorable “people rides” this week; one to see the gang down at Saluministi who have relocated from North Melbourne to Bourke Street in Docklands. What a warm, affectionate Italian welcome I received there. The other was to see George and his Hammer & Tong commuting crew in Fitzroy. An exceptional breakfast with lots of bike banter about racing (local and international), food, crashes and tackers. A good bunch to hang out with on a Friday.

Today I’ll take the Roubaix off the trainer and do a  ride up to Kinglake on the and back to Warrandyte for lunch and that will just about be it for cycling till Lucca. They’ll be few farewells to friends over the weekend, a couple of days at work and just before I leave on Wednesday there’s the annual visit to the dietician which will a very really good thing to do before I hit Italy.

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Next time I post I’ll be somewhere else

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Posted by on August 27, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

Recovery on track minus fitness and adding fatness!

IMG_0062Today is the August GreenWEDGE Cycling ride. We’re heading out Wallan way via Arthurs Creek and back via Mr Turners Bakery in Mernda. The weather isn’t flash and its about 100km with extras.Currently there’s some drizzle so I think it’ll be a tough day in the saddle. But rule #5 we’ll have to kick in.

Yesterday I did a Buttermans Track loop which was 49km from home with a 1000VM. I feel I’m on track for recovery minus fitness and adding fatness! Today will test that initial recovery. Then its 11days till I head to my off-season Tuscany recovery camp.

Life moves on.

 

 

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Posted by on August 21, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

Nineteen Days and Counting

imageMy recovery is well underway and I’m feeling generally good. Last Sunday I did a 63km ride out Whittlesea way on Dietmar’s suggestion which was a milestone. After parking in the tennis courts at Arthurs Creek/Plenty Roads we started winding up along Plenty Road when Dietmar and me caught Shane out on a training spin. Turned out his plan was something like mine, long and flat. That used to be a coffee spin 63km but now it was a bit epic! Since then I’ve been doing fine, a few more rides at work during lunch and I will do a spin with Peter out to Strathy this Sunday. I’ve also hit the trainer!

imageMy training got a boost when I finally got the Zwift running using my Lemond Revolution trainer. It was fantastic to see the watts ticking over and to start moving down the virtual road with other riders. I bought a starter kit and set up the Roubaix on the Lemond Revolution a few weeks ago but couldn’t get it to go until I had a light bulb moment last Tuesday. I realized if I mounted another ANT to sense the tiny magnet on the Lemond flywheel it might go and bingo with a bit software tweaking it worked and I was virtually racing through London. WooHoo!!!

The equipment setup includes these items;

A Bike – (Specialized are best option)
LeMond Revolution Trainer
2 Garmin ANTs [one for cadence and other for speed of flywheel]
Apple iMac
Zwift plug in ANT
Zwift software
Heart strap

imageMy other good news is I put in my claim on my Velosure Insurance for the bike crash damage on Thursday July 4. I received an email back Friday asking me to contact them the following week which I did on the Tuesday. They made me an offer of full compensation for it less the $250 excess and if I wanted I could buy the bike back for $250. Done deal, money was in my bank account the next morning. Bike will be repaired through Total Rush while I’m away. I can recommend Velosure bike insurance.

 

Roll on Italy in 18 days time

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Posted by on August 12, 2016 in Cycling, Uncategorized

 

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My Left Foot

IMG_8508This week I returned to the road on the shortest of rides   starting at my workplace in North Melbourne and riding through Carlton onto Fitzroy to catch up with the HATOF crew (Hammer & Tong on Friday).

This is a Friday get together with a bunch of cyclists who ride into the Hammer & Tong cafe from different directions to get breakfast, talk bikes, the weekend and generally shoot the breeze.

For me it was a milestone being my first road ride since July 9 and an indication of returning fitness. I rode my flat pedal $198 Reid so I didn’t have any pain from unclipping the left cycling shoe from that pedal. Its early peak hour traffic pretty much in the centre of Melbourne and I did get a little nervous not having my street smarts fully functioning.

All was good though. I took great comfort from being in the company of fellow cyclists who’ve all had their tumbles and crashes too. Encouragement and understanding was laid on in big helpings.

Tomorrow I’ll do another ride with Dietmar out on Plenty Road from Arthurs Creek Road to Whittlesea. Nice and flat. I’ll be clipped into the pedals and doing checking out the Morang Bakery with him. Getting back to normal. My Tuscany Training Camp will part the recovery  process and how I’m looking forward hopping on the plane in twenty-five days.

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Posted by on August 6, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

Miss Cycling

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Three weeks have now passed and I’m on the mend.

Last weekend was the turning point on my recovery, its where the Road to Rome looked possible again. The pain in my back seemed no more and all that remained was what felt like bruising and not the deep pain. My ankle is the only thing giving me trouble now but even that is gradually improving, I’m very lucky.

The physio continues to provide treatment and advice that is building my confidence. On Thursday I got on the trainer and did about 30 minutes of light spinning.  It felt so good to get on a bike and spin the pedals, delicious. It was with a nervous feeling that I got back on the bike and I felt even more squeamish when I realised I had to twist my foot to unclip from the pedals. Ouch! Maybe I’ll try not to “clip-in” for a while to give the ankle the max chance of improvement. I’ve become a Zwifty now thanks to my comrade Alain who got me set up on the program. A few tweaks and I’ll be there and when that happens he reckons “I’ll never go outside again”. Friday I did a walk around Heide Gallery and that also helped heaps too. I love Heidi its one of my Top 3 Melbourne places to visit and don’t ask me what the other two are ’cause I don’t know!

So with 32 days to go before I head off I’m starting to get my enthusiasm back. It took a nearly mortal blow with the crash and subsequent back pain but I’m starting to make my plans again.

I’m starting to picture myself cycling down to Roman Roads to Pisa while listening to Nathaniel Ratliff and Marlon Williams in September.

 

 
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Posted by on July 30, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

On The Recovery Road

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Its two weeks since I crashed and the recovery has been really slow but noticeable to me. All the road rash has cleared up but the two major areas of concern are my left ankle and back. The back in two areas and at different times, there is a lot of stiffness in the mornings and a constant pain in another location of the back but its decreasing progressively. A couple more visits to the physio coming up this week.

Dealing with the brain is another thing, I’m trying to visualise being back on bike, riding and climbing. Then I’m seeing myself in Tuscany, taking roads and climbs. I’ve taken possession of a Zwift starter kit and today I got the Roubaix down off the wall, gave it a wash and pumped the tyres.

I’m looking forward to getting the Lemond into position with the Roubaix mounted, climbing up onto the bike and turning the pedals!

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Posted by on July 23, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

A week of no bike :(

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Today marks a week since I crashed on the corner of Harris Gully and Tindals Roads, Warrandyte. I’ve been at home most of the week and not been able to record a metre on a bike. Monday to Wednesday was mostly hobbling about with my left ankle and foot really in pain. Monday was my first visit to my doctor and then a back scan on Thursday. This Monday its back to the doctor to discuss the scan report. My back hurts particularly in the morning and its coming from the thoracic vertebra (T7) I’m told.

Today I took the bike back into my bike shop Rush. Paul believes it can be repaired and in time to get to Italy. I’ve got some insurance on that one through Cycling Victoria which also provides out of pocket medical expenses to $10K. So I’ll keep you posted on how that goes.

The thing that is playing with my mind is not recovering in time to ride Italy in September but I remember how things went last time I went to Europe. I was reading from my blog from that time and I got some encouragement from reading what I was up against. A month before I was due to leave for Paris I developed a hernia but I got there in the end and did the climb to Passo de Stelvio.

 The Next 4o Days Will Tell 

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Posted by on July 17, 2016 in Uncategorized

 
 
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