2 – Training plan

For my previous two ultra races I didn’t do any specific training; I did have a longer commute, so just made sure I put in 150-200 kms each week that way.

This year, my commute isn’t as long. I also took a break from cycling early in the year due to lockdown, hence I feel it’s necessary to have something more structured, in order to make it to the start line in an adequately prepared state.

To come up with a training plan, I started by plotting the available time out on a spreadsheet and have added in notional exercises into the dates, ramping up from easy to moderate over the weeks. If I have any planned club rides or similar events I can pop those in when I know about them.

I’ve added in the Trans Kernow event as a milestone. It will give me a good opportunity to experience the ups and downs in Cornwall, and ahead of that hopefully a trip to the Isle of Wight.

Anyhow, you can see my plan here:

Since it’s on Google Sheets, I’ve been able to add some custom script so that when I open the spreadsheet, it automatically updates it with my ride distance and elevation data recorded on Strava. I exclude the rides I tag as ‘commute’ on Strava, since these are just short direct rides between home and office. This allows me to keep an idea of what I’ve ridden, against the plan.

It’s a loose plan, but it’s a plan, and it helps me stay on track and on top of getting physically prepared.

~ An té a bhíónn siúlach, bíonn scéalach. ~
~ We who travel have stories to tell. ~

1 – Introduction

First off, thank you for making a donation towards the London Air Ambulance charity.
You can read all about the great work they do here: www.londonsairambulance.org.uk

This summer I’ll be competing in the Pan Celtic Race – an ultra-endurance bike race, and I’ll be doing it on a Brompton.

The race starts on 4th July and I expect it will take me two weeks to complete the 1,400 mile course. It will be physically and mentally tough, and if I do make it to the finish line I will be very happy. All riders carry a tracker, and their progress can be followed on a website (a pastime known as ‘dot-watching’).

I’ve completed two ultra-endurance races before; the TransAtlanticWay race in 2018, and the inaugural Pan Celtic Race in 2019. Both races were pretty gruelling, but equally amazing experiences. I love cycling, and to ride in some of the most beautiful parts of the UK and Ireland is its own reward. Take a look at the videos on the Pan Celtic website to get a feel for the event.

The Pan Celtic Race routes through the territories that made up the Celtic nations. The route is different each year, but can pass through Scotland, Northern Ireland, Ireland, Isle of Man, Wales, England, and Brittany. The route is devised to pass through beautiful areas, places of Celtic historical significance, and deviously challenging terrain. The specific route is yet to be confirmed for 2021, but due to you-know-what, will be confined to the UK mainland.

It’s run by an amazing, caring, fun and passionate team who I’ve had the pleasure to get to know a bit through the last race as well as attending a few of the gatherings – get-togethers with other members of the Pan Celtic clan. All the attendees I’ve met have been amazing people. Perhaps it’s that all people have a bit of awesome in them, and this race helps bring that to the surface.

Over the next few weeks I hope to write a few posts on my preparations. I’ve started training (to lose some of those lockdown pounds, and to get myself physically prepared for the race). I’ve popped in a few milestone events to help me along the way. Not sure about the bike yet. I’d like to buy a new one for the event, and make a few special modifications, but everywhere is out of stock! And then I need to get a plan together for my kit. Clothes, sleeping equipment, tools to take, medical supplies and so on. There’s a lot to think about!

Anyhow, thanks for reading. Please feel free to use the comments form to ask a question or share your thoughts.

~ An té a bhíónn siúlach, bíonn scéalach. ~
~ We who travel have stories to tell. ~