Saturday cycle, Apr 26th

Cycle_toonRecently I asked club coach, Harry Wiltshere, for some advice on the long steady rides at the weekend.  The following are some of the key points  from his reply:






  • It can be very difficult to satisfy everyone when a large group of people ride together.
  • My suggestion would be that five groups of 4 riders will work far better than a group of 20.  If  4 people are of a similar standard and want to do a similar ride then this is the best situation.
  • Weekend club rides are not supposed to be high intensity.  It is essentially an aerobic session.  You should be able to comfortably hold a conversation with the people you are training with.  A relaxed and easy pace will be more beneficial.
  • Use these rides to focus on really smooth pedalling and gear selection thus learning how to become efficient.  Keep the upper body very still and relaxed.  I encourage people to have a look at riders like Wiggins or Roche (  When they ride, they always look smooth and are never overgeared.
  • The weekend club rides are for trying to look smooth like a pro.  Mid-week sessions are for riding hard.  If every session turns into a high intensity one, then people will become fatigued and will not get the most out of the key sessions. An easier session at the weekends allows a little time to recover and to maintain their aerobic base.

Some very sound advice there.  I’d also add a few points that I think we struggle with as a club:

  • The weekend rides should be long, steady rides.  Steady doesnt’ mean slow.  It means keeping a relatively constant effort regardless of whether you’re going uphill, downhill or into the wind.  Think of consistent power through the legs.  So… go easy up the hills and make sure to pedal going down the other side.  Same effort up and down.
  • Focus on riding neatly and safely in formation.  Try to get comfortable riding in close formation and rolling up every 2mins.  It is vital for riders safety that people clearly call out and warn of dangerous obstacles or objects on the road.  All of this takes extra concentration but will result in safer, faster cycling.



For this Saturday’s spin the forecast is for a strong ESE wind. There aren’t many options to allow us to return with the wind other than the main road from Youghal.

Here is a suggested route: (114km)

The run in back from Youghal should be nice.  Last week we managed a single pace line, 4 strong, rotating every minute at the front to cover this distance at an average of just under 40kph while keeping the effort mainly aerobic.

If anyone wants to go shorter, I’ll be taking the following shortcut home as I’m racing on Sunday. (88km)

Leaving City Hall @ 8am