Thursday, August 27, 2009


When the others went for coffee after the swim this morning I went to work. It is just 15 km from the Civic pool to Stromlo. Almost took a kangaroo head on as i turned into the crit track at Stromlo. They seem to have about the same level of traffic intelligence as a reindeer. None. Or more like "look - there is something moving on the road - let's get in front of it!"

As i turned the alarm on and the light out tonight I found myself alone in a very dark Stromlo Forest Park. Only the stars (and the kangaroos lurking on the side of the road) saw me roll out through the gate.

Have just improvised some banana bread and noticed that the reigning Cross Country World Champion posted a comment on the events Facebook page. He needs help to find rollers for training here in Canberra. Just get out and ride Sauser!

When I came home tonight Nico had already popped the "Cyclo Zen" disc into the computer. Yep, you might have guessed it, Yoga for cyclists.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

One good day of training

Yesterday was a good day. 120 km in the spring sun. A fantastic muffin and latte in Collector and lunch at Kingston Grind after a short run. 

I can feel the difference riding the new bike. Everything is just a little bit smoother and I struggle less too keep up with the boys, even in the hills. 
It will take some adjusting for me to find the good, comfortable position though. We bought a shorter stem (to get the handle bars closer to me) and pushed the saddle about as far forward as possible. That should help. I also got my first aero bar attached to my ride. So now all I need to do is use it. A lot. 

Should have done a long run today but since i was up at 4 am this morning (after just 2 1/2 h sleep) doing a speech via gmail video chat at my very good friends wedding in Sweden, I didn't get up until 10. And thats when I got the first call from work ... 

Will try to get up in the but ass crack of dawn tomorrow to get that run in before i go to work. 

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

I am REALLY tired in the morning

Arrived at the meeting point for the bunch ride this morning in Dickson, on the other side of town, and people were looking at me a little strange. I was wearing my uber cool glasses and Swedish army socks ... but come on! 
Then one compassionate human being rolled up to me and said: you forgot your helmet. I look at Nico, he looks at me - at my head, my hands touch my head ... yep, she is right, I forgot my helmet. The compassionate persons next comment was: it's probably not a good idea to ride in a bunch without a helmet. HELL NO! It's not a good idea to ride at all without a helmet. 

I feel like an ass, turn by wheels around and peddal back home again. Praying that I won't crack my skull open or get fined before I get home. 
Then I went for a run in Red Hill. Without a helmet. 

Todays conclusion: At 5.30 in the morning I am stupid and my boyfriend is blind. Or as my mum might have put it, "you are lucky that your head is attached to your shoulders, or you would forget it!"

I was swimming with the Exeed squad last night. Haven't been there for a long time but it felt good, even if I have to admit it was quite hard. Would be even better if they could install heaters in the change rooms!

Monday, August 17, 2009

New bike

Had a rest/work day yesterday. My body was feeling fine after Saturdays adventure but work is making my brain sore ...
Had a nice relaxing run this morning (maybe my inside was a little sore once I started bouncing it up and down again) with the view of the lake having it's usual effect. Weather it is glittering like gold as it was this morning, or completely invisible in the fog like last Friday, it always makes the creases on my forehead slightly less distinct.

I did something else yesterday. We did something else yesterday. We brought home a new member of the Remires/Axelsson bike family.
One piece of fine Swiss engineering is now parked next to the sofa. The black and white BMC Race master still hasn't had a chance to taste the road but it and it's very proud owner will be ready for a first spin before dawn. That owner being Nicolas. I am personally very pleased with being able to claim ownership of the Malvern Star (displayed by Nico in this photo). I have been riding for "real" less than 9 months, for me a good carbon bike is as good as another.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

No love for Espresso Love

Today we simulated a half Ironman. Me, Nico and Pete planned to start off with a nice bomb dive at seven this morning. But there was a sign that said "No bombing" so we had to rethink that one.

Anyway. After 1.9 km in the pool we did an ultra long transition (by car) to Lennox Garden to meet up with some Exceed people for the normal Saturday bunch ride. It was a hilly one today. 90 km that included Mt Condor and Coppins Crossing made it's mark on the legs.

Getting of the bike I was feeling a tired and sore. And I really thought my legs might fail me.
As I started running i felt really good! The body stretching out, getting back into it's natural movement. But sure, I was a little tired after the ride and the swim so I figured I crack open a gel after about 7 k. BIG mistake.
I never had anything do something even remotely as horrible to my inside. First the pain, then the feeling of ... eh ... feeling sick. My eyes were franticly scanning for a toilet by now.
To my great relief I remembered one would be coming up shortly so I just clenched my teeth and soon arrived at my sanctuary. Back on track a minuet or so later I was thinking that hey, this might turn out to be a nice run after all. How wrong I was.
Maybe 3 k later tears were filling up my eyes. And I knew there were no salvation to be found for at least another 10 k. I had no choice. If the bears can do it, so can I.
Catching up to Pete for to the second time I was starting to feel slightly drained ...

As I reached the other side of the lake my intestines were begging me to just be put out of their misery. Dehydration was an understatement and it was just no fun anymore. A third pit stop at the yacht club (and a minute hunched over the drinking fountain) made me feel in control of my body enough to make it back to the parking.

And who names an energy gel Espresso Love anyway?!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Longing for open water

I cant wait for the lake to be warm enough to swim in! 
The Tuesday morning swim lasted for a little more than 1h and during that time I managed to push my body about 2.7 km forward. A little bit on my back, a little on the side, doing some drills, trying to get air from the left and right ... But in all honesty, it is hard for me to keep the excitement going lap after lap ... 
And I believe Civic pool had some issues with the filters or something. The water wasn't exactly crystal clear. 

Monday, August 10, 2009

Could have done with another lap around the lake

The Sunday run wasn't as long as it should have been. But the hour and 15 min I did manage to fit in was enough to take the edge of some of that lurking stress building up for the new work week commencing sunday afternoon already. Spent the afternoon and half the night in Canberra Centre putting up a display for the world champs. 

Tickets for Perth are purchased. 

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Just a small piece of plastic

Started riding at even this morning (or a few minutes after do my dear partners great distress). Teamed up with the rest of the Exeed bunch at eight and headed out on the highway towards Lake George. As we turned off onto the old highway, about 45 km into our ride, it finally happened.
I put my half eaten Vegemite sandwich back in my pocket and clicked in my right shoe, started rolling, put my left foot on the pedal, pushed and ... nothing. I turned the pedals a couple of times and pushed, jumped on the pedal. Nada. My left foot remained free as a bird.
15 min later, after some violent assistance and 175 really bad words in french I gave up. The cleat under my left shoe was dead.
And I must admit, just by looking at it, it has been on life support for quite some time and I have been denying the inevitable.

A limp Swede and a cursing Frenchman turned around, headed back to Canberra and the nearest bike store. Thank you Lonsdale St Cyclery for letting me by new cleats with just 25 bucks, a smile and a promise to come back tomorrow. And thanks for screwing it on.

A new left cleat, 40 km and a little run later normality was restored. There is however a Giant OCR2 on sale. Not that the bike had anything to do with todays mishap but in the midst of cursing failing equipment there was a promise of an overall hardware upgrade ...

Friday, August 7, 2009

Came to work with distinct goggle marks around my eyes

300 fr
4 x [150 pb - 3 x 50 pb]
3 x 200 (100 board/50 fr/50 kick)
30 min fr

... and I was supposed to keep track of the time for every 100 m during that last 30 min ...

For you non swim-nerds, fr= freestyle, pb = pullboy (a floating device placed in your crutch taking the legs out of the equation).

I stayed up last night talking to a very good friend on the other side of the world. Swam like a polar bear in search of ice in Africa this morning. Finalised the marketing budget for the 2009 Mountain Bike and Trials World Championships today. Tired beyond belief tonight.

Mother Nature is an artist

The sunrise over Lake Burley Griffin took my breath away. Colours like this only exists in the movies. And in Canberra. 

20 min warm up, 2x10 min in the stairs by the bridge and 20 min to get back home.

Wednesday morning is bunch ride morning. Right now we are riding with a new group that start their rides from across the city. Riding there and back (instead of taking the car) made it a good 45 km ride. For me that is. Nico had a couple of hours so he scouted the route from our apartment to Stromlo Forest Park (where I will be working from the 19th August - 6th September). The result: it shouldn't take me more than 35 min to get there. 
By the time he rolled by my office window his computer had ticked past the 100 km mark. 

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Turning the other cheek

2.6 km in the pool this morning. And most of it was with an elastic band (aka used bicycle tube) around my ankles.
Biggest achievement of the day was the at least partially successful bilateral breathing. I breath on the left side about as well as I write with my left hand.
With some more training I am however confident that if the waves are hitting me from the right I will be able to avoid inhaling them at least sometimes, while trying to reach the end of the jetty in Busselton.

Had a 'function' at work tonight. Some dude talking to me for 20 min about 'trying to stitch everything he is involved in together ...' eh ... that is 20 min of my life I will never get back.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Rest Day

Too bad Rest Day doesn't mean laying on the sofa eating chocolate. 
Just finished lunch in front of the computer at work and even if I'm not training today there will be no such thing as rest. My dear colleague AB just mentioned that we have 28 days left to The Event. 
The Event is the 2009 UCI Mountain Bike and Trials Championships and I am doing Marketing and Media for it. Great job but working 10-12 h days isn't really helping my training ... Anyway, it's just for another few weeks. 

The saturday ride was awesome. Four hours out in the sun, pushing up and swooching down the hills. The route we took around Tidbindilla - Cotter-  Uriarra - Stromlo is a favourite. Finished with a 5 km run and felt great! 
Was working most of the day yesterday but managed to squeeze in a 1.45 min run up on Red Hill. Felt a bit heavy and slow but the flocks of kangaroos and the sunset put a big smile on my face. 

Was supposed to swim this weekend as well but that just didn't happen. Nico did 4 km. He is telling me that this week I NEED to do three swims ... 

I believe that someone told me that rule no.1 in training is 'Do not try to coach you partner'.