Ridelondon is getting very close now, only a few weeks away and the nerves are starting to kick in. The next big test was to see if these old legs still have the distance in them. I am in much better shape than I was last year and its good to be able to carry some of the fitness through, although as you people training for RideLondon are probably aware, most of the time its all in your head and cycling is mental challenge to keep going as well as a physical one. The order of the day was a long long ride in the New Forest to try and get close to the total distance and see if I can sit on a bike for a long time.
The new forest is a beautiful place on a bike. The sun was shining and the roads pretty clear of traffic. You miss so much of the countryside from within a car, isolated in a metal box you miss out on so much that you get to experience on a bike. It was a hot day, so plenty of stops for water refills and refuelling. I just ticked the bike round no silly heroics today. Sometimes its nice just being out on the bike rather than trying to achieve training goals. The new forest ponies were out in force as were the cows and other wildlife.
There are loads of little hamlets and villages hidden away off the main roads. Some beautiful thatched cottages and some great views over the forest, including the Isle of Wight and the sea. In total a distance of 88 miles was covered, which is pretty close to where I need to get to on the day. I feel good to have done a long one and am able to sit in the saddle for that long. A few more rides next week – with a possible long one. Then its the fun part of eating a ton of pasta just before the big day.