Beaufort and Mountainbiking

Wed 6th, Thu 7th, October 2010

GPSies - AIme, Moutiers, Albertville, Beaufort, Cormet de Roselend, Bourg, Macot, Aime

Wednesday, woke up to sunshine and warmth – we have been due this for a while. Too good a day to spend indoors. Set off for 115km circuit from Aime through Moutiers and Albertivllle and from there at 265m altitude climbing  up through Beaufort to 2000m altitude at the top of the Cormet de Roselend and then plunging down to Bourg St Maurice and returning home via Macot.
The gradual descent to Albertville was slowed down by a headwind. This headwind was ideal because it meant that the wind would be blowing UP towards Beaufort and would help on the climb.  I started at midday because all summer there has been a tendency for the sun to disappear late afternoon and the steep climb through the Beaufort valley is shaded by trees and steep valley walls causing it to remain permanently chilly. The descent from the Cormet de Roselend into Bourg is also shaded and can get very cold if left too late. As it was the timing was perfect and there was no need for any protective clothing.
The only incident was a traffic build up in Beaufort village and when the woman driver in front of me suddenly braked at a sleeping policeman instead of driving over it – I went straight into the back of her being unable to stop due to the shoes being attached to the pedals. Fortunately I managed to miss her bumper and only used my hand on her car. Technically I was in the wrong, but her dead stop braking was completely irrational and unexpected. No harm done. I overtook her while she sat stationary in the middle of the road waiting to be crowned the crappiest driver of the century.
The climb up from Albertville is a killer and the previous time I’d attempted it my legs were in deep pain by the time I’d reached Beaufort. This time however the legs were fine – despite the hard work against the wind earlier. Overall the trip was more than half an hour faster than the previous time so it showed good progress.

Strangely, this circuit really leaves the legs tired and although there was no deep pain on the climb this time there was still more pain than even when racing. That’s something I don’t understand. The level of effort was much lower than that achieved when racing – much less time spent in the lactic acid producing zones – but the leg pain was greater.
From a training perspective the good news is that I’m managing to maintain a constant level despite the lack of motivation now that the racing season is over.
Thrusday. Mountianbiking
On Thursday Chris received his new Drift HD170 headcam and so turned up at my door to borrow an SD memory card. This rapidly evolved into a mountainbike trip. It was the first time the mountainbike had been used since the Spring – but it was great to get it out again. Unfortunately my recently ordered SPD dual (flat on one side) pedals had not yet arrived so I had to climb without cleats. The workout was a bit hard to get into with the legs still being tired from the previous day – but it still felt better than expected. The descent was a bit awkward to start with but improved as I got used to committing to the hairpin turns and relaxing on the rough ground. The Drift camera worked well and I’d recommend it for practical purposes over my GoPro HD camera – it is lighter, has a wrist wireless control is discrete when mounted on a helmet and the quality is excellent.

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