It’s been more than a month since I first announced my proposed Trotternish Cycling Trek during my trip to Scotland this October. I figure it’s about time to give an update on the progress of my training for this trek.
So far, I have achieved my suggested milestones and I am on track for the next, with my top ride so far 25.28 miles from this past Monday. All things being equal (although they won’t be in Trotternish) that distance would take me over the halfway point, around the point of the peninsula, and to the ruins of Duntulm Castle.
Although I’m adding distance quickly enough, my next challenge will be dealing with ride comfort. I’ve just switched to wearing bike shorts (yeah, the black spandex that everyone likes to make fun of) instead of normal shorts and it does help with the comfort – especially since they are padded where I contact the bike seat. The biggest challenge is fighting numbness in my hands. A little research today suggested that since the triceps bear the weight of the entire upper body onto the handlebars, strengthening them will do wonders for arm and hand comfort. I foresee some new triceps exercises in the future…
Despite my progress, I still haven’t been consistent enough with my riding. I’ll hit a long ride, but then I’ll take two or three days off and be sore for the next ride. Not helping matters is a complete lack of available information on how much recovery time is recommended for cycling training. I have no idea how much time, if any, I should allow for bouncing back from a long ride. If anything, I’m guessing that I may be taking it too easy at this point.
Yesterday I devised a new, more aggressive schedule for my ride conditioning. I now plan to stick to all the following guidelines:
I will cycle at least 6 days each week.
No ride will be less than 10 miles.
One ride should be at least 20 miles in length.
One ride each week should exceed my maximum distance.
Both yesterday and today I rode 11 miles each. These rides were both relatively easy and I wasn’t sore after either. So by these rules, tomorrow needs to be at least 20 and I’ll probably try for a new top ride tomorrow morning (my last top ride was 25 miles on Monday).