Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Strava, mountain bike training rides and meteors

Admiring the view on Drewerstone whilst getting a great shot of my flare clothing jersey for the website

Its getting to that time in the year where training for for the enduro season is getting serious!

I've sat and written my training plan, worked out how many base miles I need to do, when to begin  weights and the dreaded intervals.

Currently in the plan I'm working on increasing my road and mtb base miles. As somebody who gets bored easily I've taken it as a time to do some exploring. Where I live I have so much access to trail centres like Haldon, Cardinham and my local woods Cann but I am also lucky to live on the edge of Dartmoor national park. 

I've only explored Dartmoor once and it was miserable and depressing on a cold winter day when I didn't know how to hike a bike so nearly knocked myself out every time, was lacking in food so got hangry and ill prepared for how unfit I was! Optimistic to give it another chance I decided I would turn to strava as my guide. 

Picking my way through the rocks on the rocks on the pipeline descent trusting the Rocky mountain Altitude will get me down safely
The great thing about Strava is you can get a sense of distance, descent and climb gradient and see who rides which segments that enjoy similar riding to yourself. 

Browsing Strava I have always seen the pipeline decent around Shaugh Prior. Determined to find it I headed out having screen shot the route on my phone so I had something to follow and match my GPS image too. This works surprisingly well!

The route has some interesting segments which really live up to their name such as "too rocky to ride up?" which so far has remained just that but i'm certain I will conquer it one dry day in the summer. "Climb for the views" which speaks for it's self and is not wrong at all!

Carrying my bike up a section just after too rocky too ride up
Sometimes it's hard to get the motivation to go out and ride on your own on a winters day but with the training plan in mind I force myself out the door . I always find or see something inspiring or new, sometimes even just meet a stranger who you have a great chat with riding the cycle path. 

Yesterday I got lucky tho, I was on the most exposed part of the ride up on the moors and I saw this weird really big bright orange light in the skyline, I was just starring at it because it was so odd, I had all the usual thoughts, a helicopter light, the sun, the moon but it didn't look like anything I'd ever seen before. All of a sudden this trail of dark smoke started coming out of it and the it just disintegrated! I tried to get my phone to film it but I just could stop staring at it! It was definitely a meteor!

It's days like that I wonder how many moments I would have missed if I was sat at home staring at my phone or the TV and not out there seeing the world. Although the training plan can feel like a burden in reality it's a great motivation to explore where I live. I've never come back from a training ride and thought I really wish I hadn't done that, so next time your lacking in motivation get out there and you never know what you might find!


Heading out onto the moors from drewerstone



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