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25 September 2011

Headride Training Programme

Taking on a challenge like the Adelaide to Melbourne 8 day ride has meant that I have had to significantly update my regular exercise programme and focus it on the specifics of the challenge. I guess one of the benefits of taking on such a challenge, is that one's training becomes very focused, and inevitably one becomes a lot fitter than would otherwise be the case.

Although most of the riders were finalised in early June, my ride was only confirmed towards the end of August, because, regrettably, I am filling in for David Anderson who picked up an injury, and was unlikely to recover in time for the ride. This has meant that my lead up time, and therefore training, has been compressed into just over 8 weeks. Additionally, I am the only one of the riders who is not regularly based in Melbourne, so I have not had the benefit of riding with the other riders in the Headride bunch - I am however going to Melbourne for a training weekend in two weeks!

My training objective at this point in my programme is to ride about 400km per week. This is being severely hampered this week / weekend, because of the rather ordinary weather here in Sydney! Upside is that I have time to update my "Road to Melbourne" blog and attend to a number of other preparatory activities - like analysing the ride route (I think that will be a subject of another blog post!). Thanks to Ollie Allan (, who helped me with training for the Tour de NZ two years ago, I have access to some of the methods of preparing for a multi-day cycling event such as Headride. Currently my goal is to ride six days a week and focus at least once a week on core strength exercise. 
 The above sees me getting up most mornings before 6am, so that I can be on the road before 6. When I ride longer on a weekday, I set my alarm for an hour earlier.

The one aspect that I have not attended to sufficiently is longer distance training. The longest ride during the event will be almost 190km, and in my training I have not had a longer ride than about 130km. I hope to address this in the up-coming long weekend in NSW, when I hope to get in a longer ride - perhaps a combination of group ride followed by an additional distance on my own. During the weekend of 8/9 October, I hope to meet up with the bunch in Melbourne and do Brighton to Sorrento, return with them - that should be a comparable distance to a long day during the actual event.

As I mentioned before, this is a charity ride being organised by Marg Noonan for the benefit of The Alfred neurosurgery unit. I would be really grateful if you could support me and the cause. Please go to to donate. I really appreciate it!

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