Trainer Days

The cold weather has returned to Belgium. Not only cold weather but also snow. This has resulted in some icy and dodgy bicycle paths and roads. No choice really but to ride the trainer. I’m not a fan of the trainer. I can get into it when it is minus 20 outside and I definitely can’t ride outdoors. But when it is not that cold (minus 2) but the roads are bad, I really hate the trainer.

I’ve done two days in a row of trainer riding now. Two 90 minute recovery rides. Yesterday I watched Young At Heart – this is a great documentary about the Young At Heart choir. The Young At Heart choir is composed of senior citizens who sing “popular” music. It is a fantastic film. Great message about living life fully. I would really like to see this choir live one day. Hopefully they add Canada to their tour stops. Today, I caught up with everyone else out there and finally watched In Bruges. Really enjoyed this movie. Strange to be watching this film while being in Belgium and having already visited Bruges. Bruges is one of my favorite cities, and now after watching the film, I want to return!

I’ve got a double day on deck for Wednesday. The morning is 2.5 hours with microburst intervals. I really really hope I can do this ride outside. I can’t stomach 2.5 hours on the trainer. In the afternoon I’ve got 1.5 hours of skills work. Have to see what the weather is like – depends on where I will go. Options are Floreal Lichtaart or the Averbode Abby and forest.

I’m looking forward to this last block of training. It is the last bit of training leading up to the World Championships in Tabor. Lots of longer rides with interval sessions and tempo blocks. Just the kind of riding I like to do leading up to a big event. I like to have the feeling of “effort” in my legs prior to an important race. I find these hard rides give me a lot of confidence regarding my fitness and preparation. I know that I really can’t build any “new” fitness by Jan. 31 but I can sharpen some of the edges both physically and mentally.

This week I’m talking with a sports psychologist that has been recommended to me by my coach and Marc’s coach. Looking forward to talking with him. I wonder if I should have done this a couple of weeks ago. But it might have been too much too soon. I’m in a better head space than I was a few weeks ago. I’m more realistic and aware of the possibilities I have ahead of me. I’m not feeling as down on myself as I was. But I still am not feeling it 100 per cent. It will be useful to talk about how I’m feeling with an “expert” and get some advice on how to handle the race pressure I impose on myself and how to deal with my own expectations. One revelation that has been helpful these past few days has been looking at the ages of some of the other women I race against (and who are finishing where I want to be…) – 43, 41, 45… Yep, lots of riding years left in these legs, lungs, and heart.

Well, I’m off. Think I might try to squeeze in a little 20 minute yoga session before calling it a night. I spent the afternoon in Leuven – taking in the shops, the January sales, drinking some decaf cappuccinos, and being a bit of a tourist. If you’re curious about my day, check out Victoria’s Island (I posted pictures!).

Thanks again for the super supportive comments, emails, and messages. These mean more to me than you can truly understand. It is so helpful to know that I have so many people cheering me on.

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