Monday, April 13, 2009

Training for "The Sabie Experience"

2008 was an great year I was living in South Africa and my brother in-law convinced me to start riding in some mountain bike races, I am a mountain biker, I'm just not that into competitive riding.
We started training in April laying down a foundation for the season. I was riding and spinning 4 days a week. My favorite part of my training was my ride into school and home every Wednesday, the children would have a good laugh at me wearing my Lycra tights and headlamp, this seemed to make them think they had theBold upper hand for the rest of the day a reason to sniggle at me when they arrived for class. This did not bother me I had an agenda, I was training. Wednesday was my measuring stick to see if all the training was in vain.
At the start of the season my average speed was 17km/hour as an average but by the time December rolled in I was averaging 26km/ hour. I was stoked my brother in-law actually knew what he was talking about and I even started doing some of my own investigating into mtb training. The whole year was focused on December, a 4day multistage race "The Sabie Experience"
But first we had to put in time to prepare. Part of that training was entering some races. In South Africa there are lots of races happening all through the summer but we needed some races before the summer so we committed to race the Lion Man Series. Each Lion Man race was between 60 and 70km depending on the terrain. All three of the Lion Man series races took place in game reserves, and although we were heading into South Africa's winter the temperatures were never below 28deg.

Even with tubeless tyres the harsh bush veld landscape of "Bela Bela" managed to damage the tyres enough to make us stop an do some repairs by putting a tube into the tyre, and not long after I also had to stop and do some slow puncture repairs. But we did not have to worry the rest of the field was also contending with the harsh terrain. Soft sand, slow riders, heat, dehydration and lack of food intake all played a part of the challenge, and not to mention the 70km ride.
The Lion Man Series was an important part of our training just as we started getting fed up of just putting in the hours in the saddle we would know in the next few weeks was the next race.

1 comment:

  1. Welcome to blogville, from one Lionman to another.