A little over a week ago, I wrote about heading to ‘Training Camp‘ in the NSW Snowy Mountains, basing out of Lake Crackenback Resort and Spa for 8 nights. While calling it a training camp was light hearted, it was about setting the right practices for the start of 2014.
Ride, eat, sleep, repeat.
Or something very similar to that. Sometimes two rides, sometimes two sleeps. Often many more than one meal.
So now, I can look back on what wasn’t a huge week, there wasn’t anything too momentous in terms of training. I rode my bike everyday. In 8 days I did about 30hrs of riding on both road and mountain bikes. There was great single track, awesome backcountry rides, quality road riding in high valleys, and some hard climbing. There was even a race, the Wicked Wombat, as Imogen Smith already wrote about.
The fact is – every day was good. Because I rode every day. I have actually ridden every day since Christmas Day. In previous years, this would be nothing monumental. Bear in mind I didn’t say I trained every day, but I rode every day. That pattern, the repeatability and rhythm of riding, where throwing your leg over the bike in the morning feels not only familiar, but comfortable and reassuring, had been missing. For months. Maybe a year.
And that’s why escaping from work, from moving house, and from responsibility of sorts, was an easy way to find that rhythm again. And there’s nothing quite like the rhythm of pedalling circles on a bike to reset your thinking and body for the year ahead. Pedalling circles with the wind at your side, on the nose or right from behind. Pedalling slow circles up a long climb, or fast circles while chasing Imogen through single track. It’s all very therapeutic, and these past 8 days allowed me to ride away a lot of worry and concern. And it reminded me that riding makes me a better person.
So now I can head home, straight into work, straight into proper training after a few easy days. I’ve got my next few months mapped out, with new trails to explore, new races to attend and report from, two new team mates to race with, and some old team mates to carry on racing with. There’s a whole lot of pedalling to look forward to.