Don’t stop now
You charge your lights overnight, it’s dark when your alarm goes off, you’ve got an extra layer of clothing on and getting out the door is so much harder than it was in February or March.
These next few dreary months is when sticking to a solid training plan can take you to the next level.
Consistency, as boring as it sounds, throughout winter will make L’Étape so much more enjoyable and rewarding.
Here are a few strategies to keep those crucial kilometres in your legs.
GROUP RIDE GUILT GETS YOU GOING
The most obvious one is group rides. But not just the local shop ride that you can skip without a sense of guilt.
If you commit, at least once a week, to a ride with a small group of friends, that you’d need to message at 5:45am if you’re not coming, the potential guilt of letting others down works wonders at getting you out the door.
INDOORS – IT WORKED FOR MAT HAYMAN
One session a week scheduled indoors gives you the peace of mind that you’ve got at least that one day of not battling the elements. And indoor sessions are incredibly time efficient.
Plus, if six weeks on Zwift was good enough for Mat Hayman to win Paris-Roubaix the home trainer has to be good.
WEEKEND GROUP RIDE
The Saturday or Sunday morning shop ride is the ideal way to get a weekly long ride into your legs.
It’s also good socially and made even better by a quality café to end the ride.
Riding to and from work is the most time efficient way to get some training in (provided it’s safe and logistically feasible option).
It also delivers consistency – four one hour rides a week is more beneficial than two tow- hour rides.
For the past couple of years this has been the majority of my on the bike time – riding to meetings, functions, etc. I need to get there anyway so I spend that transit time on my favourite mode of transport.
And if all else fails, do what I did as a teenager, and daydream that you’re riding an epic spring classic whenever you get caught in the rain.
Being one of the most recognisable voices of cycling, Matthew Keenan regularly forms part of the international commentary team at the Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana, broadcast around the world from Europe, USA, Africa, New Zealand and on SBS in Australia.