Published on February 4th, 2017 | by admin0
London Edinburgh London 2017 Starts Here!
When I started road cycling, which was during early 2013, I set myself a crazy goal to complete 3 famous rides. The first was John ‘O Groats to Lands’ End, which I completed with the Deloitte, Ride across Britain package, which proved to be a very physical demanding 9 days of torture, because in reality I was never ready for it as a novice cyclist. The second of my three so called famous rides takes place at the end of July this year and is the infamous London Edinburgh London (LEL). As its title suggests, crazy cyclists start in London , cycle all the way to Edinburgh then turn round and cycle all the way back to London. Along the way there are set controls which riders must stop to get there cards stamped. There is a suggested route which all riders are encouraged to follow although it is not obligatory. As long as riders visit each control they are free to take any route they wish. From all the blogs I have read taking part is simply an amazing experience although having to complete over 1400km with over 14000M of climbing in just over four and a half days it is no walk in the park. Last year when 400 places were released early, I was one of the very lucky people to secure one. Early this year I paid the balance to 100% secure my place.
During the last couple of years I have been slowly building up my long rides plus gaining all sorts of experience of long distance cycling. To give myself a bit of a challenge, for the last couple of years I have also taken part in the Newcastle to London (N2L) 24 hour ride, although both rides were to say the lease a disaster. During N2L 2015 someone hit my back wheel which knocked me into the curb and over my handlebars which hurt my back. I tried to ride on but had to admit defeat as I was in too much pain. Last year, in horrendous weather conditions, I was a witness to a terrible accident with involved a car ploughing in to a rider just behind me. I lost a lot of time waiting for the ambulance and police which left me riding alone into a monster headwind for almost 160km (100 miles). Worst still though I lost my nerve plus for a good few months lost my love of cycling. I did though make myself ride through the night and complete 360km before quitting at first light as I did not have the nerve to ride through the heavy traffic of London.
It has taken some time but I’m enjoying my cycling again plus I really do want to have a crack of riding LEL. But of course, there is no point taking on this mammoth ride if I’m not going to complete it. So I have set myself two major goals which I must meet before the end of May. May 31st is the final date I can withdraw from the event and receive most of my entry fee back. I will also not book flights or accommodation until then.
So what are the two major goals? Well the first is that I MUST get my weight down to at least 80Kg. If I’m not close to 80Kg by the end of May then no LEL. The ride is going to be tough enough without carrying bloody body lard. My second goal is to ride a hilly 600km over 48 hours before the end of May. If I’m going to complete LEL then in real terms I’m going to have to ride at least 300km for 4 consecutive days with maybe 200km on the final day. Ideally I want to ride a 600km in 48 hours around the end of May then a 900km in 72 hours during late June or very early July which for sure will not be an easy task here with the heat in south east Spain. Returning from the UK after a “heavy” Christmas my weight had rocketed to 91kg although through exercise and healthy eating I’m already below 86kg, so on target so far. In regards to cycling I managed just under a 1000km in January which included a couple of longer rides up to 160km which in my opinion is not bad at all considering the winter we have experienced here so far.
I’m going to blog my progress together with my training plus equipment I will be testing for navigation and lightening which I hope may be useful to others riding LEL this year. Wish me luck because I’m sure I’m going to need it!