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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby downhillingdemon » Tue Apr 17, 2012 11:28 am

Monday - rest day. Well, actually it wasn't, I pedalled up and down the road with some of those funny SPD thingies on the bike. Hmm, within 5 minutes I was already pulling the back of the bike up and generally getting back all my bad habits I have lost by running flats. I thought changing back to SPD's would be easy, but when it comes down to it, I think the benefit of speed would be outweighed by relapse into bad habits. However, it may be because I only had my old pedals and old race-style shoes....perhaps with a platform SPD + shoes with cleats I can position closer to my arch I may be ok. Who knows. Maybe I actually really like flats now, a lot more than I realised.

Tuesday - woke up with a very VERY sore Achilles. So painful I could barely walk and my surveying boots were rubbing like mad. It could've been from all the pedalling at the weekend, although I suspect it was the SPD's.....my ankles are just not used to being in that position.

Bench-day at gym. Still working with dumbbells to strengthen my right arm

Wednesday - Achilles still sore....but thank heaven actually ok to ride with, so had a steady pootle around the hills in perfect singletrack conditions.

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Thursday - Pouring with rain, ankle still not 100%, and leading 'ladies day' to which I knew no-one would turn up. 6:50 pm I headed out and sat in the bus-stop at the meeting point shivering....just as I decided to call it quits the rain stopped and I made the most of the evening...two trips over the beacon in the most gorgeous sunset. Crappy phone pic, but at least you can get a taste of how gorgeous it was!

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Friday - rest.

Saturday - Ribbesford
Had to stay close to home as the OH was on call for the weekend. So headed up to ribby and met up with Johnstuff for some boingy fun. I was shattered, don't know why tbh, just one of those days (as was ok again by Sunday) but still had lots of fun. Made me realise just how far my riding has come on when I can ride trails like rib-tickler even on a tired-day! Got some cool pics n a bit of video:

Johnstuff
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Moi
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Video the OH put together:


Sunday - MB Swindon Ladies day at the FoD
What a brilliant day! Sunshine, great company, chilled pace - welcoming for all abilities. These ladies days are just fab for bringing out the best in people and seeing smiles all round :D

This is my friend Jen who is 7.5 months pregnant, and still riding....none of those 'sitting on the sofa cos I'm preggers' excuses from her. *respect*
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I also took the HT on the DH runs, which was, ahem, interesting. Raising the bar certainly got me HT practiced again in a very short time! Felt properly comfortable on it by the end of the day which is really the first time since building it back up. Gawd I love riding the HT on descents, it's just sooooo much fun and sooooo much challenge.

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Here's a wee edit of some head-cam - as you will see, a wide range of levels, but everyone is having a good time and that's all that matters!



Monday - squat day at gym. Lots of warm ups then 5x5 on squats followed by chins, lat pulls n abs.
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby Rach » Tue Apr 17, 2012 11:45 am

Great pics!How are you finding the dumbbell benching for strengthening the right arm? Just curious if you injured the right arm or are working to correct a strength imbalance?
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby purple_mog » Tue Apr 17, 2012 12:18 pm

Seriously lady - your sport has the best pics and videos! Looking awesome :D
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby downhillingdemon » Tue Apr 17, 2012 12:34 pm

Thanks purple_mog! Good to see you back on here :D

Rach wrote:Great pics!How are you finding the dumbbell benching for strengthening the right arm? Just curious if you injured the right arm or are working to correct a strength imbalance?


Good - I dislocated my wrist last summer and was in cast for an extended period plus recovery. When I came back to the gym I went straight back into bench, light bar at first was painful to hold, then the oly, then worked back to having weights on, but have struggled to regain the strength I had this time last year. Realised that my right arm was the failing point and it is significantly weaker than the left and that I was driving mostly with the left arm. I'm still benching, but working to focus on driving with my right as well as the left, especially toward the end of the set. Then following on with dumbells I work the right arm first then do similar reps with the left. I think it's working. Time will tell!
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby rattus » Tue Apr 17, 2012 1:04 pm

downhillingdemon wrote:Moi
Image



Lost for words!
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby Rach » Tue Apr 17, 2012 1:05 pm

downhillingdemon wrote:Thanks purple_mog! Good to see you back on here :D

Rach wrote:Great pics!How are you finding the dumbbell benching for strengthening the right arm? Just curious if you injured the right arm or are working to correct a strength imbalance?


Good - I dislocated my wrist last summer and was in cast for an extended period plus recovery. When I came back to the gym I went straight back into bench, light bar at first was painful to hold, then the oly, then worked back to having weights on, but have struggled to regain the strength I had this time last year. Realised that my right arm was the failing point and it is significantly weaker than the left and that I was driving mostly with the left arm. I'm still benching, but working to focus on driving with my right as well as the left, especially toward the end of the set. Then following on with dumbells I work the right arm first then do similar reps with the left. I think it's working. Time will tell!


Sounds good.I am also working to make my right side as strong as the left.My trainer has me doing dumbbell bench pressing but also incline dumbbell bench pressing and standing dumbbell alternating shoulder presses all of which are helping to even me out and may be of use to you
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby downhillingdemon » Mon Apr 23, 2012 8:18 pm

Tuesday - Rest

Wednesday - Rest

Thursday - Ladies evening ride. A lady actually turned up who wasn't me! An hour of milling around the hills chatting was just what I needed to spin my legs out in prep for the weekend.

Friday - Rest and running about like a maniac with work and getting up north.

Saturday - Sheffield Steel City race at Grenoside

It had rained, a lot, since we visited. The track was a different beast. Pedalling the big bike was EVEN harder work. I was feeling like it was just such a bad choice of race for the weekend and kicking myself through practice (especially after crashing spectacularly on the gap which I should've known I couldn't clear in the wet) that we hadn't gone to Devon to race woodland riders on a nice flowy course. In fact, the only thing that brightened my mood was the great friends who were there...oh, and meeting the main man Steve Peat. :D

Mad-fan photo below!

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Anyway, first run came and I just thought, pedal, pedal and bluddy pedal. So I did. I didn't worry about style, I just tried to keep the wheels moving. Flew off the drop at the end and heard I was in second. Never thought that would last, what with pro-rider Hannah Barnes in the line up....however, she didn't have much luck on her side and crashed out due to catching the rider in front. Couldn't believe I was sat in second, and by a significant margin from the girl in third.

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Lunchtime we sat there and pondered changing tyres....the mudfest was rapidly drying and supertacky spikes are murder to pedal with. However, a black cloud was looming and the torrential rain we had promised would be around all day looked like it might finally turn up. So the spikes were left on.

This was not a good decision! Second run came later than expected and by then I was tired and the track drying. Still, I tried to pedal harder and hold more speed.....just a few seconds to make sure I kept a podium spot of sorts....

....couldn't believe it when I managed to hang onto second place even though my second run was slower. To put it in perspective I beat Hannah by over 3 secs and was only 3 secs or so behind the first place - even though they were both on trail bikes and the lady that won is an expert who, looking at her results on roots and rain, has won pretty much everything she's entered and is also local and no doubt had every line dialled.

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I am most pleased. Sure, it wasn't a proper DH race, but it was still a race, and I still did way better than I thought I would. To add to that my race buddies also all did really well and I met some more lovely racing-ladies. So, despite my early reservations, it was definitely the right choice for the weekend.

Podium with my animal liberation top on ;)

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This is the OH on the start ramp

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I still have so much to learn though! Looking back at the photos I was looking down a lot of the time which is a BAD habit I thought I had mostly got rid of. I think it because the course was so slow and I knew I was struggling to clear stuff so I was subconsciously looking down to check where I was landing! It certainly wasn't my best riding effort - I know there is more there and I could go faster, be better, smoother.....if only work wasn't so hectic and I had more time on the bike... I need to keep pedalling right to the line. I need to not make any decision about how bad I am at a course is until I have had several practice runs and found my flow. I probably need to not talk to anyone until my first run is over as I am a bit vile when I am stressed hahaha.

Sunday - Esholt
We went to visit some local trails built by our riding buddies. Both shattered, and neither feeling like doing anything too much, we still lost a good few hours in the woods....and hit some pretty big path-gaps. I got a screenshot of the otherhalf doing one - the run in was slippy-as and the landing a little sketchy. I was glad I hit this, but called it a day after as I knew my tiredness would likely be the end of me if I tried much else!

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I can't even begin to explain how well constructed and fun the short runs were. Shows what can be achieved in even the smallest of spaces.

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Monday - rest day
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby wannalift » Mon Apr 23, 2012 9:04 pm

Hell yeah! Well done.
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby fredrikw » Tue Apr 24, 2012 6:16 am

Well done, congratulations!
--- non-racers. the emptiness of those lives shocks me ---
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby downhillingdemon » Tue Apr 24, 2012 9:38 pm

Thanks guys :D

This racing marlarky is quite distracting though, I have really struggled to concentrate at work since!

Tuesday - Squat day at gym. Ploughing along with 5x5 again, 50 kg was easy tonight. Chin-ups, lat pulls and abs. Then decided to try some press-ups for the first time since dislocating my wrist last year. Finally I can put weight through my flat hand! It was painful, but got better the more I did. I am going to be sore tomorrow!
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby IronGirl » Tue Apr 24, 2012 10:37 pm

Hey Congratulations DHD. Awesome job!

And more fabulous photos. That drop looks sooooo scary!
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby fredrikw » Wed Apr 25, 2012 6:50 am

downhillingdemon wrote:This racing marlarky is quite distracting though, I have really struggled to concentrate at work since!

Sounds like the way it should be. The opposite is sadly more common, that work is so distracting than it's hard to concentrate on racing. You're lucky :)
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby Orkje » Wed Apr 25, 2012 5:48 pm

Congratulations! Didn't you recently state that racing wasn't really for you? :lol:
Once the mind and body have been awakened to their true potential, it's impossible to turn back. - Henry Rollins
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby Mr. Cleetus » Wed Apr 25, 2012 9:12 pm

Wow! congrats. That's awesome. :D
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Re: downhilling demon's MTB log

Postby downhillingdemon » Sat Apr 28, 2012 9:04 pm

Thanks everyone :D

Got a couple more pics from the day:

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oh yeah, and oooof practice crash:

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Right, so back to it

Tuesday- gym. Plodding on with 5x5 on squats, then did chins, lat pulls and (for the first time since last July) flat handed press-ups! It hurt my wrist a lot, but the pain got less the more I did :mrgreen:

Wednesday - rest

Thursday - ladies night ride. Two ladies turned up, TWO! It was an excellent evening, just chatting and pootling around the hills. Although, actually, the pace was pretty reasonable and it felt like a good work out by the end. Totally managed to dodge the horrendous April showers we are having too! :D

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Friday - rest day....well, not really. Had a WHOLE day in the tattoo chair and, although I was fine during, afterwards I felt properly knocked about. Like I had ridden miles and miles and miles and miles. Still, it was sooo worth it....first sitting of many, but it's a start :)

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Saturday - a day of pedalling riverside singletrack, canal towpaths, urban trails and a catastropic puncture in the Wyre Forest. Got to ride with BGW too! Got a few pics, will post them later.
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