Riding a bike has never been so complicated, numbers, lengths, watts per kilo, technique…. However, getting on your bike is really all about fun and feeling fit or; that you are getting fitter. Everyone has their own way of getting the fun out of their bikes. I love the tech!
I have always been fascinated with technique. If you’d seen me in the past you could find me riding a section of single track over and over and over again just to get it nailed. I spent 16 years commuting near London and to offset the boredom, aside from wild sprints, I worked daily on perfecting my pedalling action. I’m a boring old fart, but that is what I enjoy. The concentration and intensity ensures that, when on my bike, I am in another world. I’m not stressed by work or other worldly hassles, just me, my bike, my body. Bliss.
This passion for analysis has helped when advising others on their technique, training and
position. I have read, listened, observed, been coached and researched to make me a better rider. When mountain bike racing it seemed like cheating, I couldn’t train as much as the rest so I’d try to get everything else done better. I never spent much on the kit but did spend time on the way I used it. However, though not claiming to be a kit geek, I have just bought some new shoes, the last weight reducing part of my riding kit (200g off the shoes and, as a bonus, 1kg of my belly). The shoes are Northwave Extreme Tech MTB to be precise but, most important, they are white and we all know that white is faster than black….
I am too preoccupied to focus on racing this year but I do want to ride the South Downs Way so I have been applying a lot of what I have learnt and observed recently doing bike fits. I had already started to change my position with my saddle further forward but then had my Apex Performance Bike coaching and I was recommended to put my saddle forward even more. Result: more power!
I have been having regular massages too and discovered, by nearly hitting the ceiling, my tibialas anterior and my etensor digitorus longus (outside front of lower leg). I didn’t even know that I had them let alone what they did. I soon realised that when grinding along at the front as my foot got to four o’clock my ankle dipped and the aforementioned muscles kicked in. Result: I was still at the front. Must be good! That set my mind off again which led to Rotor Q-Rings. At that point where my leg seemed most powerful I am now effectively pushing at least two chain ring teeth bigger. Since then I have had P.R.s and some Strava cups on every ride on or off road so something must be working!
It never fails to amaze me what your body can do and how it can be pushed. My lifelong
passion to be fit combined with an obsession for technique and tweaking every little thing is what is keeping me motivated and inspired. If you wonder what riders inspires me try Robert Marchand.