Two Zero (PS - TL:DR - sorry)

Hey folks - when you want to use the Did I Suffer … more than you Sir @Coach.Neal.H … then this seems like the place to do it. So …
More Than You i say !

After a few years in SUF … first one sporadic, then pretty consistent for a couple of years, I’ve been seeing if a 50+ can really get quicker or not - and if I’m honest I have thought many times this is about keeping what little I’ve got (no cycling background before my 40’s) - road since Mid 40’s for some MTB fitness, but I often challenge myself to try and aim for some ‘targets’ …

One I didn’t really think was achievable for me … on a normal road ride, solo, out and back, (so not one way wind assisted or anything), And here at home in Scotland so representative lof my normal riding, was to somehow hit 20mph avg (not being nuts about it mind you, I will be stopping and so on like normal - this isn’t some sort of 3hr TT goal)

I was sure I could hit high 18’s, maybe even 19, on this route I was going to do, as it’s about the best I can do up here in the highlands.
Hardly any junctions, limited villages/traffic lights, so it lends itself well.
But still, 5 years ago I’d have laughed at a 19. But I also knew that a couple of years ago I managed 18 with more climbing than I’ll do today (albeit was lighter and younger). So last night I thought … why not give it a go …

And needed to think about how to ‘manage’ that ride …
(Well I didn’t manage the first 10km at all - went for some 30s Strava thing right at the start, followed by a 3 min one, followed by a 10 minute one … just to completely waste the legs less than 15km in (87k ride). But that’s ok, it’s like doing the rest of FF after you’ve destroyed yourself on the MAP section right? Interesting test

That started me (tailwind out) with a high average, but tired legs … and then the management started. Years of SUF, teaches you where you can go, and broadly ‘hold’ and the pain began …

One stop on the way out for fuel, and I was as expected (tailwind) ahead … but perhaps not as far ahead as I hoped… “manage it“ I told myself and see what happens. no more sprints, just SST type work and I reached half way at 21mph. “Not enough” thought I, as the 10mph tailwind was now a headwind — but I’ve done probably 60-65% of the climbing for the day - so let’s see …

This is when the magic happens … fuel and go into ‘management mode’. Eye on the average speed a bit, and now working harder and harder to get home.

But half way home (so 3/4 of ride total), average has dropped to about 20.4 … eek, getting tired … struggling. Family pass in the car going the other way … I’m so tired i didn’t see them.
Head down, up one of the longer ‘drag ups’ which are really hard in to the wind now … and I’m still holding 20.2 …

Surely can do this now, but have village now and a last nasty strong headwind 3 miles … “Keep managing pace” … I say - there’s nothing good for me if I bin it now …

Finally roll (actually 500m sprint) back to start … 20.2 … Never thought I’d see that day.

And I can’t find any donuts.



Congratulations, @Sir_Martin! :partying_face:

Damn, I would like to look at your ride but I’m not registered with strava. Maybe you can post a quick screenshot?

I like that you raced against yourself and set a new record. At the end, all that was left on the table was your pride, and you pulled through.

1 Like

Thanks Pierre (@P.Weikamp). Screenshot of the basics …


Yeah. Bit of a random target but it gave me my own incentive … comparing self with self is where I’m at :slight_smile:

Thanks for sharing


Firstly, thanks for sharing! Secondly… I LOVE that part of three world. I used to go on holiday to Aviemore annually for 5-6 years. It is utterly, utterly beautiful around the Cairngorms. I would absolutely love to go back, but being in Portsmouth (or near) it is a long old drive!

1 Like

It’s a helluva drive from there @Ross for sure. But worth it.

Last nights thunderstorms were truly epic sitting under the Northern Corries of Cairngorm itself with that thunder reverberating round the mountains.

And the heavens opened for an hour… turning the Cairngorm road to a river. Immense.
I was planning on doing an unofficial TT (second ever TT). Waited out the weather and went for a ride out to Cairngorm and back …
And did the 20 thing again (I guess loads of people here do this for 30mins but it’s big for me)

Well done! It is truly a wonderful place. I will go back one day I’m sure, I did more MTB and running when I was there. Running around Loch an Eileen was wonderful and to the Loch that’s in the middle of nowhere from the trail from Loch an Eileen (can’t remember the name!). I remember driving along the A939 for many miles too, the scenery is breathtaking. I am jealous!!

1 Like

Congratulations @Sir_Martin - that’s fantastic to hear and see! And cheers to There and back again! Next time we meet…the ale’s on me!