Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter.

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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby downhillingdemon » Sat Feb 19, 2011 8:48 pm

Huge mileage BGW! Much respect!
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby VeganGraham » Sun Feb 20, 2011 6:13 am

Thanks, I'm lucky to have a mostly off road 22km round trip commute, so with the occasional day where I drive in offset by longer weekend rides, I'm averaging about 20km a day.
Once the weather improves I'll be taking the long way home from work a bit more often and doing some proper all day epics at weekends.
Target is 10 000km on a mountain bike this year. 8)
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby VeganGraham » Tue Mar 08, 2011 10:55 am

I forgot to log my trailquest results from the 27th of last month.

3 hour trailquest around Chilton, Oxfordshire.

The A34 dual carriageway was out of bounds with only a few safe crossing points allowed.
I got to where I thought one of them should be and couldn't find it, so changed my planned route to loop round a different way and cross further down.
I checked on Google earth afterwards and found I had missed a junction and gone past the tunnel entrance. Only a couple of minutes wasted as I visited the same control points anyway, just in a different order.

My gears were getting harder to shift throughout the event.
One of the problems with a Rohloff is that it uses two full length gear cables and a twist grip. In wet and muddy conditions the cables get stiffer and the twistgrip gets harder to grip & twist.
Luckily, by the time it got so bad I needed two hands to change gear, there was a mostly straight and flat run back on tarmac, so I forced it in to a high gear and slogged on.
I changed the whole shifter assembly for a spare one when I got home and the difference is amazing. It's one of those things where you don't notice it getting gradually worse until it's too late.

12th/62 overall http://www.midlandtrailquests.co.uk/eve ... .php?e=124

If I hadn't made that mistake in the previous event, I reckon I would have been 9th rather than 15th.
After getting 3rd overall in the last league I'm now struggling to make top 10.
I feel like I'm riding as well as ever, everyone else must have got faster.

Currently 11th/88 in the league after 2 events with the best 5 scores from 9 to count.
http://www.midlandtrailquests.co.uk/eve ... s.php?l=12

47km in 2:58
http://connect.garmin.com/activity/70475474

In other news;
There's only 135 solo places at Mountain Mayhem this year and I've got one of them.
Mrs BGW is riding in a team of ten and will be lucky to get two laps in, so she'll be my support crew in between riding and sleeping herself.
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby VeganGraham » Tue Mar 15, 2011 8:15 pm

Three hour trailquest around Elford, Staffordshire.

This was a bigger area than usual, being an A3 size 1:50k map about 20km across.
I planned a route of about 60km, not unrealistic for three hours with a fair bit on road.

I took a wrong turning before I got to my first CP. I rode about 1km before I realised I wasn't heading towards a bridge I could see in the distance.
I then took another wrong turning on an unsignposted bridleway. It was a 50/50 guess and I guessed wrong.
I completely changed my planned route and set off for another nearer CP instead.
I got to the right gate, but was so fed up at having wasted about 30 minutes riding round in circles, I didn't read the description properly, couldn't find the CP, thought I was at the wrong gate and carried on.
I rode about another 500m before I was convinced there wasn't another gate and I must have been at the right place first time.
Reading the description again, I saw that I should have been looking for a fence post 10m from the gate, so I set off back and went straight to it.

After all that, I just tried to improvise a loop taking in as many high scoring CPs as possible.
Heading back, short of time, I took a calculated risk and detoured for a 20 and a 10.
I got back 8 minutes late for 11 penalty points, so it was worth the extra 30.

14th/37 on the day.
9th/99 in the league after three events.
61.6km in 3:08

What the vegan endurance cyclist eats: Sunday night's tea;

Image

I love simple food. I'd be happy with a plate of mashed potato and a tin of spaghetti on it's own. Six Linda McCartney sausage rolls makes it a proper meal though.

In other news;
I've entered Sleepless in the Saddle, so that's it, I'm doing three 24 hour solo races this year.
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby baldy » Tue Mar 15, 2011 9:31 pm

Dinner looks good, no sauce though?
"A wise man once said, "It's easier to buy smaller clothes, than to put on 5kg." ... Buzz
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby bob_summers » Wed Mar 16, 2011 10:09 am

[quote="baldy"]Dinner looks good, no sauce though?


Aye, you not got owt moist?
:wink:
Surprised that you use landranger maps for TQ. Would 1:25000 not be better or do you cover too much ground?
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby VeganGraham » Wed Mar 16, 2011 4:56 pm

Normally,of course, I have brown sauce on everything.
The usual division of labour deal with trailquests is that I drive to the event and back and Mrs BGW cooks tea.
She brought it in on a tray without brown sauce and I was too hungry and tired to bother going out in the kitchen to get it, so I ate it as it was.

Most trailquest maps are an A4 section of a 1:50k OS map, which works out at about 13x8km, which is about right for three hours.
The same area at 1:25k would need a map four times as big, which would get a bit awkward to fold and attach to a map board.
Sometimes we use an A3 size 1:25k map, which gives about 9x7km.
It all depends on the area in use. Sometimes the bridleways are scattered over a large area and we need to link them all up with a lot of road riding, sometimes there's a good network in a small area.
The Control Points are always on public Rights of Way, so the additional information on a 1:25k map, like field boundaries, wouldn't always be all that much use.
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby bob_summers » Thu Mar 17, 2011 6:25 am

Ah so you're looking for a description of the marker rather than something on the map.
TQ sounds right up my alley but of course doesn't exist here. I guess there might be an on-foot equivalent.
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby VeganGraham » Thu Mar 17, 2011 7:00 pm

There's two different systems in use.

The most common one is that you will be given your OS map with just the location of the control points marked on it before the event.
At this point, you don't know the value of the CPs and can only guess that the harder to get to ones will be worth more points.
You've then got as long as you want to plan a route.
Once you've clocked out and your three hours is ticking away, you are given an A5 score sheet with the CP values and detailed descriptions.
At this point, you might want to alter your planned route. :D
The map alone will show that CP 1, for example, is at the junction of two bridleways, the score sheet will tell you it's worth 20 points and is on "Bridleway sign post, E of junction"

The other, less common, system is that unmarked maps are available to inspect before the start.
All you can do is familiarise yourself with the roads and tracks in the area and know where the boundaries are. You can't do much route planning.
After you have clocked out, you will be given a fully marked map and a description sheet.
You now have to plan your route on the fly and refer to the description sheet when you get to the right place to find exactly which fence post or telegraph pole the CP is attached to.

Both of these are what would be called score events in orienteering.
Everyone picks their own route and nobody gets to all the CPs. The winner is the one with the highest total value of CPs visited.

Here's an example of a map.

Image
TQ map by Vegan Graham, on Flickr

I always mark my planned route in highlighter pen, it makes it easier to follow when riding.
I've given myself two options to the West here.

Here I've marked the scores on the map, which helps when deciding to alter my route. I minimise clutter by not marking 10s and leaving off the zeros.

Image
TQ map (2) by Vegan Graham, on Flickr

For example, I planned to head South to CP9 via CP8, mostly on road. CP27 turned out to be worth 20 points though, so it would probably be worth a slightly slower off road route for the extra points.
That's the score sheet clipped on there as well. Some people use a sort of arm band holder for them to keep the map board clear. I keep meaning to make one. :roll:
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby bob_summers » Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:32 pm

yep, I quite like the thought of flying round my own route without knowing how everyone else is doing. If you bump into a competitor en route, I suppose you'd have to lie about how many you'd got :wink:
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Se envejece cuando se deja de pedalear"
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby VeganGraham » Fri Mar 25, 2011 8:16 pm

It can be quite funny bumping in to other riders during the event.
Usually it's just a quick "Hello" and no more. Nobody wants to give away their route or the position of any CPs.
It's good practice never to punch a CP, then stand there looking at the map working out a route to the next one.
If someone else comes along in the mean time looking for the CP, seeing you there is a good clue to where it is.
Better to at least know which direction you want to leave and move off immediately, then stop at the next junction to check the map.

On the other hand, if you happen to be riding behind someone and gradually gaining on them and you know there's a CP coming up, hang back a bit. Let them search for the CP so you can save a few seconds by going straight to it.

In other news, I've got an ear infection and a perforated ear drum, so I'm currently near enough half deaf. Should be OK again in a week or so.
I took the opportunity while at the doctor's to use their scales. I'm down to 93kg.

I've been having a major tidy up at home, moving stuff in to a new shed I've built.
I'm going to concrete an area for the power rack to go where it can stay and be out of the way.
While moving the plates around, I thought I'd put a few on the bar and just see what I could do for a military press.

5x20
1x40
1x45
1x47.5 PB

I don't know where that came from, not having lifted a bar overhead for a while, but it's a bit of motivation to get the cage and bench all set up to use again.
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby bob_summers » Sat Mar 26, 2011 12:51 pm

Ouch, look after that ear.

Thought you were looking a bit whippety compared to the bike weekend in Wales!
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby downhillingdemon » Mon Mar 28, 2011 7:53 am

Hope the ear gets better soon - that sounds horrid.

Good work on the PB! Heh, surprise ones are always the bestest :D

Btw - finally got a tour round the Wyre on Sunday - I can now see why you love it so much - very swooshy n swishy! :D
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby VeganGraham » Fri Apr 01, 2011 10:42 am

Glad you liked the Wyre Forest.
I know most of the people on the Facebook and Bikeradar groups and a few others as well who do Sunday and mid week rides. If you ever want to come up this way again I can introduce you to people who can show you around if I'm not about. As you probably found out last Sunday, none of the good stuff is signposted and it's a big help having a local guide.

Anyway, last Sunday I was at Lower Quinton, Warwickshire for a 3 hour trailquest.

My planned route.

Image

My actual route, cut short a bit at the end as I was running out of time.

Image

16th overall. Definitely dropping down the placings compared to last year.
Currently 9th in the league after 4 events.
51km with 740m of climbing in 3:02 is about right for me. I'm riding the same as ever, everyone else is getting faster. :?

575km on a mountain bike in March.
Slipping a bit on my 20km per day average target, but I had a couple of weeks off work, so I lost some commuting distance.
On the other hand, the weather's getting warmer, so I'm taking the long way home most days now.
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Re: Too fat to be a cyclist. Too skinny to be a weightlifter

Postby VeganGraham » Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:14 pm

No training as such to add, I just wanted to record that yesterday's commute home after finishing work at 1:00am was the first night ride in shorts this year.
Summer's nearly here. 8)
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