Using Periodisation To Build Road Cycling Fitness

Periodised cycling training

It’s pretty straightforward to find a cycling training programme on t’internet.

(You might have heard of this thing called ‘Google’?)

The thing is, whilst they’re helpful to a point, these training plans are generally designed to apply (and appeal) to a broad swathe of the Googling public. And they all seem to be 12 weeks long (I know, I generalise… some are 16 weeks long…).

Pick from ‘Beginner’, ‘Improver’ or ‘Expert’ and follow the programme (or not, as the case may be). I’m sure progress will follow.

But there’s a better way. A way of building your own training programme. One that lasts longer than 12 weeks.

Let’s talk periodisation.

And let’s try not to fall asleep.

Read moreUsing Periodisation To Build Road Cycling Fitness

Riding A Century Sportive In 2018 (I Got A Place In The RideLondon 100 Ballot!)

Riding a Century Sportive in 2018

Well it looks like I’m riding 100 miles this summer.

It had to happen eventually. After 6 attempts, I’ve finally won a place in the RideLondon 100 ballot.

And gosh darn it I’m going to ride it.

In fact I’m not just going to ride it, I’m going to train for it.

Read moreRiding A Century Sportive In 2018 (I Got A Place In The RideLondon 100 Ballot!)

How To Build Good Cycling Habits (By Doing Little Easy Things)

build good cycling habits

In this post I’m going to help you build good habits, which you can apply to improving your cycling. And your life. You’re welcome.

Often when you want to achieve great things, you just need to repeat a series of simple actions many times. And repeat.

The trick is working out how to encourage (force? trick?) yourself into performing those simple actions until… one day you suddenly realise you’ve achieved your great thing.

It’s at this point that generally someone will say to you something like:

  • Wow I don’t know where you found the time to achieve so much
  • I could never do that
  • You’ve been so productive

They see the ‘afterwards’ and immediately think about the size of the elephant that you’ve consumed (not literally).

You, of course, remember that each mouthful was just a mouthful (not literally).

🐘

Read moreHow To Build Good Cycling Habits (By Doing Little Easy Things)

Dealing With A Painful Knee (Or Any Injury That Keeps You Off The Bike)

Dealing With An Injury

There is a certain sinking feeling when a familiar injury returns. The twinge in my left knee as I get off the bike. The tightness above the knee. That feeling of dread as it starts to seize over the course of the afternoon. The jolt of pain as I walk down the stairs in the evening.

Then weeks of ‘is it getting better?’, ‘I’m sure it’s improving’, and ‘damn it, that hurts’.

I’m in that place right now with my knee.

I’ve tried resting it (sort of). I’ve tried light training rides. And, so far, the pain doesn’t seem to be going away.

Now I’m getting worried. I’ve got PLANS for this year. I’ve made some commitments to do rides with people and I don’t want to let them down. I need to get my training started.

What am I going to do?

Read moreDealing With A Painful Knee (Or Any Injury That Keeps You Off The Bike)

LifeLine Essential Clip On Mudguard Review: Easy To Fit And More Effective Than Expected

LifeLine Rear mudguard review

I’ve had a revelation. And it involves my arse.

As a result of being a bit more committed to riding when the weather is filthy (partly in order to find opportunities to test high performance outer wear), I’ve tended to return from rides with mud and ‘road juice’ sprayed up my back and my backside.

I think US readers may refer to this as the ‘buttside’, but I am not sure.

The gunk hasn’t only covered my person. It’s covered my bike.

Whilst I’ve been good (“good girl Daddy” as our youngest proclaims) at rinsing down the bike after each ride, it isn’t ideal having megatons of megacrud splatter-gunned all over the rear, whether it’s mine, or that of the bike.

Oooh, What Could The Solution Be, Mont…?

Thank you for asking.

Now, much as I’d love to draw out the suspenders further, the somewhat banal ‘revelation’ is that I’ve bought a new easy-to-install – and effective – rear mudguard. Profound.

Read moreLifeLine Essential Clip On Mudguard Review: Easy To Fit And More Effective Than Expected

Cycling Presents That I Got For Christmas (By AD Montgomery, aged 38 and a half)

… Which is surely the sort of title that must surely get you very excited to read the rest of the blog post.

No matter. I’ve started so I’ll finish.

I don’t tend to receive a lot of Christmas cycling gifts from anyone except my sister and brother-in-law (what with him being a cyclist and all).

My mother, in particular, tends to be somewhat cynical about my cycling aspirations, so prefers not to encourage them. Her lack of gift ideas this year, combined with my helpfully-emailed list of cycling products, each with a handy link to the Wiggle website, seems to have resulted in a slight change in attitude.

And she now has a Wiggle account. Result.

Anyway, I thought I’d provide a quick list of wot I got, as a preview of potential longer reviews (assuming I can be arsed motivated to write them).

Read moreCycling Presents That I Got For Christmas (By AD Montgomery, aged 38 and a half)

Wearing Prescripton Glasses Whilst Cycling (And What About Varifocals?)

Cycling with prescription glasses

I was emailed recently by a Sportive Cyclist reader (the other one that’s not my mum), who rightly noted that I wear glasses.

Alan (for that ‘twas… ‘twis his name) then went on to supply some very helpful tips around cycling with varifocal lenses. I’ll share these later on in this post.

First though, since my glasses involve bog standard (albeit unusually prescriptioned) lenses, I thought I’d write more generally about cycling whilst wearing bins.

It’s at this point, I can offer the non-spectacle wearers amongst you to stand down. There’s nothing here to see (although if there was, presumably you’d see it very clearly indeed).

Read moreWearing Prescripton Glasses Whilst Cycling (And What About Varifocals?)

Do You Always Wear A Helmet When Cycling (And Should You)?

I’ve been writing the Sportive Cyclist blog for nearly 5 years now, so I guess it’s time to hit the big red self destruct button.

It’s time to get political.

It’s time to enter The Great Helmet Debate*.

(* which is I think the name of the new BBC show commissioned after they lost the rights to GBBO…).

In essence, will wearing a helmet make me more aero (#moreAero)?

Oh wait, the other helmet debate. Should we be forced to wear helmets when riding a bike?

Read moreDo You Always Wear A Helmet When Cycling (And Should You)?

How To Maintain A Cycling Habit Into Winter (Or How I’m Going To Try…)

How To Maintain Cycling Habit

In the past, when I’ve managed to build something resembling a cycling habit over the summer, I’ve tended to lose impetus around October. The rides dry up as the weather wets up (and colds up). Excuses are made and other ‘priorities’ take over.

Sometimes the rot sets in in September.

Of course I don’t always realise that my ride consistency is slipping. I fool myself into thinking that I’m keeping the habit up with the odd autumnal excursion.

In reality, if I looked at my Strava history objectively, I’d note a paltry couple of rides recorded over the course of October, perhaps in November, and then declare it done for the year.

Read moreHow To Maintain A Cycling Habit Into Winter (Or How I’m Going To Try…)

Castelli Perfetto Long Sleeve Jersey Review (The Jersey Formerly Known As Gabba)

Long time readers of this blog will know that I’ve had an unhealthy obsession with a certain piece of cycling clothing for an irrational number of years. Over that time I’ve done precisely nothing about it (er, like buying it).

Well now I’ve finally done something about it.

I’ve bought … a different piece of cycling clothing. And this is my review.

Heretofollows my thoughts on the Castelli Perfetto foul weather jersey.

Read moreCastelli Perfetto Long Sleeve Jersey Review (The Jersey Formerly Known As Gabba)