Posted by: Bruce Duncan | May 30, 2010

Getting back in the Game

So for the last few weeks i have been having loads of fun, spending lots of time with great mates, generally down the pub, and not out on the hill.  This has been really good for me, I have relaxed a lot, and found it really good to step back from my training and racing and generally have a time out.

Lunch with a great friend by the Thames

I have been almost to both ends of the country, up to Scotland for a wedding, and then London for another one, with lots of BBQ’s, lunches by the river and messing about in parks with lovely people.  It has been a bit hectic at times, but great fun non the less.

I am know getting back into some good training again, with the possibility of a race in France at the end of the month, and being away almost all of June anyway, i need to get focused again.  I am doing lots of event work this coming month, working on the Oxfam Trailtrekker in the Yorkshire Dales, then on the Deloitte RAB, an event with 600 cyclists riding from John-O-Groats to Lands End over 9 days, a huge logistical mission, but both events will i’m sure be a lot of fun alongside the hard work.

On the training side, having not even looked at my running shoes for a while, i headed out up Latrigg on Thursday night with Ant Emmet, it was a lovely evening and Ant is a great person to get out training with, and perfect for my first run back, 55mins up and back on a stunning evening

A still sunny morning looking over Derwent Water to Cat Bells

We met again early the next morning at the waters edge and paddled down to Manesty Pk at the head of the lake, where we hid the kayaks in some vegetation before running up Cat Bells and back again, before paddling back to the car.  It was a tough session, the climb up Cat Bells is steep from there, and i could really feel my legs from the previous night, but again, a stunning morning, hardly a soul around, it doesn’t half make training easy.

For the weekend i headed to York to see Clive who is off to Austrailia soon, so it was my last opportunity to come over and spend some time with him.  After a lovely pie in a pub on Friday night, we got up early saturday morning to head to Dalby Forest to ride the mountain bike trails there.  The trail isn’t very technical, but it was hard work, constant ups and downs on a very hard packed bumpy surface, thankfully my Yeti took most of the sting out of it, but we both knew we’d be rattled to bits by the time we got back to the car.

Halfway round we joined the World Cup circuit that was built recently for the UCI World Cup race about a month ago.  We set off round this far more technical section with some super steep climbs and decents.  We completed most of it, then realised we needed to continue around the red route to get back to the car at a reasonable time.  This meant we headed down the steep technical decent once again.  Clive had skipped it the first time, but went for it the 2nd.  Just as i was getting my camera ready he came over the final drop off in a rather unconventional manner, sideways!

I felt totally helpless watching him fall face first into the gravel and dust right in front of me.  It looked bad initally as all bike crashes do, but when he looked up and all his teeth were still there, and the grazes were all superficial and he had checked all joints we were able to laugh about it a little before we set off quickly so he didn’t seize up.  Annoyingly i missed it with my camera too!!

After a good 3hr ride we were both famished, so headed to Walton for some lunch, then back to York.  We then headed into the centre to meet an old school friend of mine i hadn’t seen for 10yrs or so.  It was great to catch up, and we had a lovely afternoon and evening chatting about what all our friends are now doing, talking about the crazy little kids Esther has to teach, and Clive and Esther talking about which were the best lakes to go open water swimming in for triathlon training!

All in all it has been a great few days, and i look forward to the manicness continuing.  I have 2 days at home before i am off again, so have to be super organised, but i am looking forward to the upcoming adventures.

I will be running a lot this next month, mainly as it is much easier to just have my running kit with me to train, but also as i need to up my speed on foot for the Nokia Coast to Coast i am competing in in September.  The new Nokia Outdoor Series website is now up and running, and is a great place to go and check out the events they are covering, and they also have some brilliant hints and tips from some elite athletes, oh and i managed to get on there too!!

Kayak training in the Sound of Mull (D. Gault)

Right, time to watch Channel 4 now for the coverage of the Wenger Patagonian Expedition Race!

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