“I hate running”, a t-shirt boldly stated at kilometer 40.6. Hysterically I shouted: “Me too!” and almost bumped into a runner who had started walking. I veered to the left to avoid the weakling walker and realized that I had lost count. Frustrated, […]
The lead-up While stuffing myself with lemon meringue tart, trifle and pavlova around Christmas, I read Tim Noakes’ Real Meal revolution book and become reconvinced that low-carb eating is the way to go in 2018. The main course My brother has been keen to explore […]
Before we reach February and everyone starts to forget that new year’s resolutions are ‘a thing’, I thought I should hurry up and post a belated 2017 retrospective.
Last year has been the most turbulent running year yet. 2017 had fantastic highlights interrupted by the turmoil of nagging injury.
Since we are all still busy grinding away at the resolutions, I’ll keep it short. Here are my 2017 top 10 headlines in chronological order:
14 minute PB at the notorious Egmond half marathon
Canyon Endurance impresses on its maiden ride
3rd place at a local 11km trail run despite months of interrupted running
Joy and relief as the summit of Mont Ventoux is a thing of the past
Unexpected second place in Amsterdam at first duathlon
Hairpin climbs and goat rivals at sunrise: Running in Crete never ceases to amaze
Goat photo credit: abrahamvandervyver
Disneyland thrills: Encounter with Paula Radcliffe, half marathon fun and countless roller coaster rides
Remember, remember the 5th of November: Marathon debut in Porto
Impulsive marathon entry leads to 3 minute PB in Milan
Parkrun excites with epic family running in South Africa
In short, it was a crazy year for running and cycling that will be near impossible to top!
What were your highlights of 2017? Tell me below how you are planning on exceeding them in 2018!
Last Saturday I nervously made my debut to multi-sport competition. I took part in the Run-Bike-Run at the Ouderkerkerplas in Amsterdam. This race has a triathlon and a duathlon, and while the triathlon has many participants in different start waves, the run bike […]
Welcome back to the fortnightly instalment of our weekly segment: “Quote of the week”.
That’s right: Like with running, pacing blog posts seems to be surprisingly hard.
So, let’s talk briefly. About pacing.
It feels good pushing yourself too hard from the start and knowing after the race that you absolutely gave it everything. It’s great to turn down the last stretch knowing that you went so hard that you can just barely hang on till you cross the line.
On the other hand, you could start steady, go for the negative split and finish with a little sprint across the line: Nothing beats the feeling of knowing that your pacing-strategy worked out and you have just enough in the tank for a little kick at the end.
It’s official. I am making my debut in the world of multisport events. Since this endeavour is more than a little nerve-racking, I’m starting out with a duathlon instead of the more traditional sprint triathlon. This particular duathlon is a run-bike-run and entails a 5 km […]
Last week was our long awaited cycle trip to the south of France. I started training for this trip in March and even bought a new race bike that would be more suitable for climbing. I ended up getting the flu and not training the last three weeks. Luckily I could recover just enough to get on the bike during the trip.
Here is a short summary my highlight, middle-light and low-light of the experience.
Middle-light: The Mont Ventoux
We climbed Mont Ventoux from Bédoin and descended to Malaucène. It was a beautiful day and there were loads of other cyclists. I only stopped once during the whole ascent, at Le Chalet Reynard, the restaurant 6km from the summit.
While I am really proud of doing the climb without stopping, falling over or pushing my bike, I am a bit indifferent about the experience. I still had flu symptoms and couldn’t breathe through my nose. Because I missed the last weeks of training I couldn’t keep up with the group and ended up doing most of the climb on my own. The scenery was pretty mediocre compared to the rest of the area. Also, it wasn’t really what I would call ‘fun’. It was a constant battle to keep peddling to not fall over!
Nether the less, I’m glad I did it.
Low-light: My bike fell over
My bike was only 7 weeks old when it helped me concur Mont Ventoux. After the decent, I propped it up against a pole and while I went for a shower. A guy in the group accidentally knocked it over and as the frame hit the pole it scratched the top tube. Since it’s aluminium, Canyon assured me the frame is fine. I shouldn’t have left it outside. It was just an accident, but it did cast a dark cloud over the week.
My bike after the fall. The scratch is covered with a Mont Ventoux memorabilia sticker.
High-light: Cycling in the Provence
While cycling up the Mont Ventoux was a bit of an underwhelming experience, the rest of the cycling in the Vaucluse was absolutely breathtaking.
We cycled between Malaucène, Bédoin, Sault, Savoillan and Eygaliers. We saw lavender fields, picturesque French towns, vineyards and the Gorges de la Nesque. My elevation gain for the week was more than 4 000 m. That’s 4000 m of climbing leading to amazing views!
I listened to an interview with ultrarunner and iron woman, Kate Driskell, on the podcast Marathon Talk. In the interview, she said that she used to fuel her endurance races with bars, gels and Gatorade. She felt sick and gained weight while training for Ironmans. […]