Monday, 30 January 2012

Dragon 2012 Preparations. Week 4

More than a stone lost in 4 weeks! 

An epiphany (from the ancient Greek ἐπιφάνεια, epiphaneia, "manifestation, striking appearance") is the sudden realization or comprehension of the (larger) essence or meaning of something. The term is used in either a philosophical or literal sense to signify that the claimant has "found the last piece of the puzzle and now sees the whole picture,"

It's fair to say that after 4 weeks of hard exercise and sporadic dieting, I have finally discovered how to lose weight! On top of that, I've had wisdom imparted to me from a T-1000 Terminator .....

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Dragon 2012 Preparations. Week 3

If veggies be the food of love, jog on

Having spent the previous week exercising to the point of exhaustion, this week I have been taking it relatively easy. Which gives me a little time to tell you about some gadgets I use whilst training...

Monday, 16 January 2012

Dragon 2012 Preparations. Week 2

This last week has proven to be my hardest period of prolonged exercise, ever. 

The Wiggle Dragon Ride may be months away, but I have a gut I need to bust. The last two Dragons were hard, this one is going to make them seem like a quick cycle to work. To survive 2012, you need to be fit. To do it fast, you also need to be pretty bloody thin.

Rather than easing myself into the newly discovered world of running, I have been typically male, and pushed myself hard .... even harder than when I first took up cycling. This is partly because Ive actually broken through the pain barrier.
Running has always been an uncomfortable experience and an extreme test of my cardiovascular capabilities. It is now almost, erm, enjoyable. My breathing has settled down into level, easy breaths. My legs feel stronger and generally my body has been giving me a big "thumbs up" to push it a little further. So I've put my running shoes on and started pushing it.

A runner, running.

Monday, 9 January 2012

Wiggle Dragon Ride 2011

"I am so cold... I am so cold... I am so cold..." Amazing really, after cycling for almost 3 years, I could get it so wrong....

Having chosen to wear a short sleeved jersey and bib-shorts for the Dragon Ride 2011, I was ill prepared for the downpour of rain half-way round the 200km route. I rode for several kilometres along downhill roads chanting this miserable mantra, interspersed with the occasional "F" word when the pace quickened and the temperature dropped.

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Dragon 2012 Preparations. Week 1.

My series of articles titled "How to lose 2 stone in 2 months" failed ... dismally.

In December 2011 I wrote weekly blogs about my attempts to lose weight in preparation for the 2012 Dragon Ride. Instead of losing weight, I ended up gaining 1/2 a stone over Christmas. Clearly I was doing something  very wrong.

I hate you so much it hurts Wii.

I now weigh approximately 16 and 1/2 stone. However, I've got a secret weapon: It's January, and this is the beginning of my last full year in my thirties. If there's a better reason to see what my body can do before it hits the slippery slope into old age, I'm buggered if I can think of it.

My first problem is my weight. I am 2 and a 1/2 stone overweight, which in cycling terms means I've eaten a whole road bike, the saddle pack, and the bottles. On top of that I've eaten my cycle shoes and lycra clothing. This means that when I lose the weight, it will be the equivalent of cycling on a bike weighing nothing, with a team car handing me bottles when I'm thirsty .... butt naked .... with my feet superglued to the pedals. Ok, the last two points aren't particularly attractive, but the others have a lot going for them. Screw Carbon; far too heavy. My Trek 1.7 aluminium road bike will be rendered effectively weightless. I can't wait.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Verenti Dragon Ride 2010

"So, we'll stick together as a trio for ninety miles and after that it's a free-for-all, yeah?" This was the agreement laid down by myself to my brother and my friend Neil prior to the Dragon Ride in Wales.
About ten minutes after finishing the ride, Neil and Rob weren't feeling the love for their betrayer.

We signed up to the 2010 Verenti Dragon Ride on midnight of boxing day 2009. Such is the popularity of this sportive, voted "UK's most popular Sportive" for a second year running, that the tickets were sold out in hours.

And then, between Christmas and June 2011, we started to train for the biggest ride of our lives; 190km of mountain climbs, 117miles of Welsh pain.