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400 miles in 6 days

How cool is that. I have the itinerary for the week and we're stacking on the miles. First ride today and I didn't need to worry about keeping the pace, I'm in ok shape compared with the rest of the guys and certainly could have gone harder today, although that would have been a stupid move given there is so much riding ahead of me.

I've stocked up on GO and REGO, Science in Sport are making a fortune out of me, but frankly its worth every penny, I'd hate to miss a ride due to poor nutrition or recovery. Aparently, according to Joe Beer (who I was riding with for some of Saturday's ride, there I go name dropping) I should be using PSP22 during my rides, so SIS are gonna get even more money from me!

Here's the schedule.

Friday - 80km (actually it was more like 70) over 'El Golfo'. 2 hrs 40 mins.
The group that did this last week took an hour longer than we did. Mostly due to high winds and slightly weaker group apparently. Felt really good and no real ascending, a fairly gentle undulating ride with a fierce side-wind, head-wind or following wind. Did I mention it was windy?

Saturday 130k 'Mirador del Rio'
Well the REGO worked. What an awesome ride, we did the full 130km in 6:03 with a couple of cafe stops along the way. 2150m of climbing and an average hr was 140, but that includes the cafe stops (!). I am knackered and very happy, it was less windy today and the views from the top of the Mirador and Tabayesco were awesome. I found out lots about my training, nutrition and riding today talking to the experts drafted in for the camp. Mostly I found out that I am an absolute donkey on the descents. I was being overtaken by bits of litter I was so slow and timid. Hey best to find a baseline and work up from it they say... well ok, I say.

Today was the best day in the saddle I have ever experienced. Lets see if the REGO works in time for the 100km up the Tabayesco tomorrow!

Sunday 100k 'Tabayesco'
4:02 and the full ride. Average hr 135, Max 172. Climbing 1315m. It hurt some today. Three groups today instead of two, fast guys, middle group and 'steady' group. Stuck with the middle group (the fast guys are pro, semi-pro and elite guys). Hurting from yesterday and it was a lot hotter today. We still managed to do the extended ride of 100km but whilst the pace was slightly faster than yesterday I was struggling a little. Thank goodness I had a gel as we swept back into the headwind and back to base.

I worked on my descending today trying to stay loose, low and smooth, managed to almost keep up with the fast guys rather than watching them disappear over the horizon. Still, lots more practice needed.

Overall today was a bit of a struggle but it sure beats the snow (!?) we've got back home. Tomorrow is a recovery ride thank goodness.

Monday 55km 'Tias'
Recovery ride, only took 2.07 though. Bugger all climbing (560m) over an undulating course. Average HR was 113, max 143. Really easy with a cool breeze from the coast. Doesn't get much better than this. Spent the first night in my new room last night and finally got a solid night's sleep in, almost 10 hours (!) but felt SO much better for it today. Everyone was in high spirits on the ride, no separate groups today with the fast boys tagging along at the back ;-)

Trying to convince Joe Beer to take me on and get my training sorted out - and give me the bollockings I need every now and again ... he might be able to accomodate me ...

At my request a few of us added an extra 11km to the original route to take it from 155km to 166km and make the magic 100 miles. It also had about 2440m of climbing. Ride time was 6.30 elapsed 7.30 - a couple of guys in the group struggled over the last 30 km and the speed went down, still and hour and a bit faster than last week which is a positive, and that includes an extra 11km. Average heart rate 131. Max 167. What a great day. The weather was a bit off, had to keep a long sleeved jersey over the top of my shirt. Only needed 2 of the 3 gels I took with me and I could have gone harder. At the end of the ride I could have gone out and done more it was hard to believe I'd just done 100 miles with two and a half thousand meters of climbin. I'm putting this down to 2 major factors; having a draft all day and adding some SiS GO to all my water feeds. I'm buzzing. When I get back I'll post in some photos - I managed to get dropped on the Mirador del Rio taking photos of the view (thats my excuse and I'm sticking to it).

Beats the 130km ride earlier in the week. Today is what this camp is all about and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute. Now, off to get a massage ...

Wednesday 55k 'Uga'
Not much to report, an easier day over Fire Mountains. Highlight being me setting the pace back up through Fire Mountain and getting lots of complaints that I was going too fast. He-He. 2.09 ride time but still 50k short of the 400 miles ... so

50k 'Sneaky trip to teguise'
Three renegades make a dash for Teguise with Scott going off to Tabayesco (!) for 'one last go'. I mosied home to La Santa with Ian and called it a day. We averaged 15mph for the day and 15.3mph for the entire week according to his bike computer. Not bad eh.

Monday and Wednesday seem incredibly short, but hey they do sandwich a fairly hefty ride. I'll be booking a massage for Tuesday afternoon. I never did get that massage, but I did finally give in to the comments from my fellow riders and shaved my legs (!!!). I'll spare you the photographs but can say I never thought it could be so tricky, especially around the back of the knee ...

What a totally excellent week in the saddle. Back to the snow tomorrow.

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