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Getting going again in sub-zero temperatures
Posted on 12/24/2010 8:20:28 AM


Hi all... Well, there’s snow in many parts of Europe and here in Sweden, I think this winter could be even worse than last year’s. But even if the weather is bad, I’m going pretty well.

Me and Gunnar Grönlund (Twenty3c – Orbea) has been training in a structured way for a few weeks now, and I’m feeling pretty comfy at the bike again. Gunnar is a strong mate and great as company when riding outside. His favourite thing is to plan a bit longer than we were setting out to do, and then to rip my legs off with an hour to go… But we’re having the same thoughts about training and we are not that much into doing something other than riding our bikes. I think that to be a good bike rider, you have to ride your bike a lot.

We are doing our sessions outside when the weather let us do so, although we draw a line when it is twelve degrees below zero (10.4 F)…! Before it gets to that point, it’s still tough, of course.

I’ve been asked three questions about riding in these tough winter conditions:

Q: How do you stop your waterbottle from freezing?

A: We don’t. The waterbottles freeze before the first hour is over; after that, you might get one sip or two if you unclip your lid.

Q: What do you wear on your face?

A: I use a normal helmet cap, and when it gets too cold I’ve got a “robbing hood” [balaclava]. So Gunnar and I ride around scaring people. Ha ha!

Q: When it's below zero, do you use road bike or mountain bike?

A: In the past few years I´ve been using mountainbikes, but this year I got a hybrid. It works great, actually, and with the spiked tires it feels pretty safe.

Anyway, I don’t pay too much attention to the weather normally – I do my sessions in rain if I need to, but when it gets too cold you’re controlled by the weather. If I’m to be honest, I’m sick talking about the snow and the weather at this point…it’s been going on quite a while!

But say that it’s too cold outside or if the schedule says an indoor session; then, I use the Ergometer. And on the Ergometer everything comes down to numbers. I’m trying to do more and more but it’s a slow progress…at least it is moving in the right direction, though. The only thing that is rising quickly is the heart-rate when you’re pushing it to the limit. And I like that; to suffer.

Anyway, I’m feeling better than ever this winter and I hope the feeling is here to stay. Christmas is getting closer and closer and a new year is coming as well…with a new year, there’ll be a new season.

In the beginning of January we, Team Endura Racing, will have our first training camp. We’ll be getting to know each other and getting going on the road bikes again. I’m looking forward to it! But first it’s time for the great family holidays and a few more hard sessions...again, outdoors, unless it's minus 12...

Have a great Christmas everyone!

Alex

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