I remember reading in Cycling Weekly one time, they said "the only way to improve climbing hills is to practice climbing hills". Simple eh? Hills are a cyclists worst nightmare after headwind, especially if you are fat like me.

I remember them saying "a cyclist will go to any length to avoid hills but once you change your mindset and start enjoying hills, you'll never stop finding them". Well that is what is happening to me.

I'm determind to improve on my hill climbing, it's the only thing letting my down. I hate climbing hills, I'm slow, I get puffed out however from past sportives I've learnt that I'm not going that slow, unless I get overtaken by a runner bean of a person. I've found that riding out of the saddle is better for me as I can control my deep breathing better.

Anyway in my quest to improve climbing up hills I've been finding every step hill in the area and I'm enjoying the challenge. Most require a good 15 mile ride out so it also gives me time to stretch the legs. I'm finding I'm improving really well, a longish hill near to where I live where at one time I was puffed out, gasping for air at the top at one point, I can now manage quite comfortably.

So again I'm really happy with progress.

I'm off to watch the Leaders Debate on ITV, with the most idiotic format that the audience can't boo, cheer or make comment. I would love to have been there when the agreement was made "yeah I'll go on a head to head debate as long as I don't have to communicate directly with the general public I'll be serving for". Great.

Monday's Training Run

I decided not to take part in the Ron Sant Memorial Ride on Sunday, opting to spend some time catching up with friends. I've been feeling really tired recently, concerned that I might be fighting off something I decided to have a bit of a blow out and a good lie in.

I instead went out for a couple of rides including a nice 37 miler on Sunday. This gave me the opportunity to try out MapMyRide, a nifty iPhone application that uses GPS to track your rides.

The really good thing about Map My Ride is that it gives you stats at the end of the ride. I did the 37 mile route in 2 hours 10 minutes with an average speed of 16 mph. Considering it was an easy spin of the legs I was impressed with the time and average speed (at one point my speed was 40mph+). I was also really happy to complete the whole ride without stopping, getting back home and still feeling good in the legs.

I've been experiencing problems with cramp/soreness in my thighs recently, my ITB especially being very sore and tight. I thought it may be due to fitness however I move my seat up slightly and seemed to cure it on my ride. Again just that small adjustment making the difference.

I'm still not entirely convinced, I went out on a quick 45 minute ride this evening and found my legs to be sore and lacking in energy. I seem to be having a lot of ups and downs at the moment. We continue....