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SlowRower

Marmotte 2011

It is apparently 296 days until La Marmotte, so it's high time there was a thread for it.

I'm going for it next year, assuming I can find a Doctor somewhere to sign me off as healthy and I'm sure Bartali will be there if only to laugh at my bike and dodgy pedalling action. Smile

First turbo session of the new campaign today, and for half an hour I thought I'd been reincarnated as Fabian Cancellara, as I was cruising along at around 10kph faster than at my best last season. Then I remembered that last season I had a big nobbly tyre on the back wheel which has since been removed. The last half hour was as much fun as the last half hour of the first turbo session of the training cycle ever is. Sad

Is anyone else going and if so what are your objectives? My objective is simply to finish in something like a healthy state, not that that doesn't stop me fantasising about gold medals whilst aboard the turbo!
Bartali

Laughing  Laughing  Laughing

I'll be there ......
bergaretxebe

It is one of my objectives for 2011!! I will be there!!
Slapshot 3

2011 !! Bugger thought it read 2014..Wink

I don't think 2011 is on the cards but I can see as it as a long term target, Tourmalet is first though, I will be forced to do that one either next year or the year after.

This might be a fun thread to watch!!
SlowRower

Key step negotiated today - we've booked the campsite. Nothing special about this, except that our "party details" triggered their "single sex party" alarm.

After some quick thinking by my trusty duelling party, we are officially a party of civil rights lawyers specialising in discrimination against middle aged same-sex couples. In light of this disclosure, the no "single sex party" ruling was lifted on the condition that we aren't rowdy "after hours".  Shocked

Now we just need an entry. If we don't get in we'll move our camping booking to a different week and go and ride the course anyway!

Berg - hope to see you there. Good luck with the training.

Slapshot - defeatist talk has no place here. Aim for 2012! (I can see that 2011 would be a challenge as you've only just re-kitted yourself. Smile)
Mrs John Murphy

SlowRower wrote:
Key step negotiated today - we've booked the campsite. Nothing special about this, except that our "party details" triggered their "single sex party" alarm.

After some quick thinking by my trusty duelling party, we are officially a party of civil rights lawyers specialising in discrimination against middle aged same-sex couples. In light of this disclosure, the no "single sex party" ruling was lifted on the condition that we aren't rowdy "after hours".  Shocked



If you will insist upon making bookings in the name of William Hague then this will keep happening to you.
SlowRower

That bit was OK, but they asked if we wanted to hire bed linen (a quite normal offer from this campsite, I must add).

I responded the only way a healthy, red-blooded Englishman would, by declining the offer because I would be bringing my Lance Duvet with me.  Embarassed

Obviously, at that point I had to hand negotiations over to my duelling partner to sort things out.
Bartali

SlowRower wrote:
Now we just need an entry. If we don't get in we'll move our camping booking to a different week and go and ride the course anyway!

Which week have you booked?  There is some talk that the etape might pinch the first weekend in July and the Marmotte might move to the 9th?  Watch this space!!
SlowRower

Bart,

We've booked the weekends of 2nd and 9th July just in case. We found a few contradictory bits on the internet re the date last night so hedged our bets!

Nightmare scenario is that we don't get a Marmotte entry and then the "other" weekend is taken up by the Etape.
Slapshot 3

SlowRower wrote:


Slapshot - defeatist talk has no place here. Aim for 2012! (I can see that 2011 would be a challenge as you've only just re-kitted yourself. Smile)


Defeatist....nah I was being optimistic.. Wink
SlowRower

I fear I may be guilty of a little undue optimism myself, but hope springs eternal!
Bartali

SlowRower wrote:
Bart,

We've booked the weekends of 2nd and 9th July just in case. We found a few contradictory bits on the internet re the date last night so hedged our bets!

Nightmare scenario is that we don't get a Marmotte entry and then the "other" weekend is taken up by the Etape.


Getting in shouldn't be a problem.  I think last year was the first year you couldn't enter the day before!
bergaretxebe

Bartali wrote:
SlowRower wrote:
Bart,

We've booked the weekends of 2nd and 9th July just in case. We found a few contradictory bits on the internet re the date last night so hedged our bets!

Nightmare scenario is that we don't get a Marmotte entry and then the "other" weekend is taken up by the Etape.


Getting in shouldn't be a problem.  I think last year was the first year you couldn't enter the day before!


To be honest, I think that if L'etape du tour is the week before even better, there will be less people doing the Marmotte, there are too many Armstrongs out there with only one big objective for the season
SlowRower

Not sure that my legs or spousal goodwill would extend to a second major outing in a season!
Bartali

Well they will be consecutive weeks ... I'm sure about that.  Question is only which comes first.

SR - you can do both in 8 days!  Result!!
SlowRower

Hmmmmm...

You seriously over estimate my capabilities and the durability of my back. I'm just a crock hoping to get lucky once!
Bartali

Training started today with 90 minutes fixed on the Chilterns escarpment to blow away the cobwebs ...
SlowRower

Marmotte training has now commenced in earnest, after a week or so of unstructured sessions to ease me back in.

Primary aim at the moment is to increase the resistance on my turbo, so that training in the required heart-rate zones yields a cadence of around 60. My longer rides in the Pyrenees highlighted that even in my lowest gear, if I cycle at my normal cadence (75-80), I’ll blow up aerobically long before the Galibier, and if I cycle at the required pace, my cadence will be so low (60 or so), that I’ll grind my back into oblivion before I even reach the Galibier.

So, what to do? Easy – increase the resistance and build up the back so it can cope. Or not so easy, when I already have the bike in the highest gear, the turbo on the highest resistance setting and I can still spin happily(ish) for 90 minutes at a cadence of 75-80.

So before Sunday’s session, I implemented a few modifications to my poor bike. I added half a dozen lengths of 50mm wood to the spokes to add air resistance, which I then complemented with an old inner tube full of water in the tyres for some extra resistance.

15 minutes in, I was grinding away at the desired cadence, but by 30 minutes I’d turned back into Fabian Cancellara. The answer was simple, and explained by the lake of water on the floor, which I’d initially thought was sweat but was in fact the contents of my inner tube. (Three cable ties on each end was not enough to maintain water-tightness at training pace.)

I finished the session and went for “Plan B” and sacrificed 2kg of gravel drive for the greater good. This was much better. Not only was there more dead weight, but it didn’t leak. 60 rpm was very hard work. There’s so much weight in the tyre than when I stopped pedalling, the wheel stopped immediately but the stone-filled tyre carried on spinning for a quarter of a rev. This was good news, as it enabled me to use my trusty roll of gaffer tape to fix the problem. I’ve not used gaffer tape for bike training before, which has concerned me no end, as life is usually better with gaffer tape involved, so now everything is lined up for a successful off-season!
Bartali

You Alf Tupper in disguise?
SlowRower

Alf Tupper - The "Tough of the Tourmalet"...

You've got me thinking. Alf was a welder by trade and I'll be he was a dab hand with gaffer tape too. In fact, a quick internet search revealed Alf's training regime, known to the select few as the "Progressive Power-tool Performance Programme". Although focused on middle-distance running, it adapts easily to cycling:

September and October should be devoted to light DIY tasks involving gaffer tape, sandpaper and spanner. November and December involve the drill, and the strategic drilling of holes to lighten the frame. In the new year, it's time to add in "steady state angle grinding", to cut the frame up, before moving onto "aluminium smelter time-trials" to produce new premium frame quality tubing. Over Easter, implement "angle grinder intervals" to cut up the tubing into frame-size components, before going all out on "arc-welder threshold" work, to weld the new frame together.

This leaves time to run to the Alps, carrying the new bike, to arrive in peak form for the Marmotte, without any use of a heart rate monitor.

You know it makes sense. Smile

And I know I've had too much coffee already today...
Bartali

Time to switch to decafe I think!!!
gerry12ie

"There are also a number of studies that show the beneficial effects of drinking coffee and/or caffeine ingestion on high intensity exercise. These include improved performance on a 1500 m run (Wiles 1992) and Anselme (1992) showed that anaerobic power in a cycling test was improved by the ingestion of the equivalent of two cups (250mg) of caffeinated coffee. Cycling was also the sport studied more recently by Bell (2001) when caffeine (5mg/kg) was shown to improve performance in a high intensity cycling test."

http://www.positivelycoffee.org/topic_exercise_overview.aspx

I read this only yesterday.  I get through 3 or 4 packs of expresso a week so how come I am crap?
berck

Sounds like a PED. It should be banned. Wink
SlowRower

Bart - Alf Tupper wouldn't touch anything as namby pamby as Decaf!

Gerry - Only 3 or 4 packs a week? You clearly need to up your dosage. You can't possibly hope to perform well unless you have blood in your caffeine stream rather than the other way round. Smile
Bartali

SR - Alf wouldn't touch coffee period. A nice mug of tea more like!!
SlowRower

I'll bet he didn't give vegetables houseroom either.
Bartali

"Well ..... t'chips is a vegetable", said Alf
SlowRower

Be careful what you wish for...

Having called on all my negotiating skills and charm to persuade the DS to let me do the Marmotte, she's turned nasty and is insisting that I don't cancel training rides for anything as trivial as strong winds and lashing rain.  Shocked

I would have been quite happy with 60 minutes on the turbo on Sunday morning, watching the rain hammer on the window, but the DS practically forced me out for some proper cycling. "You'll not be doing the Marmotte on your turbo" was her logic and I couldn't disagree.

The ride itself wasn't so bad - 2 hours of steady state with a few railway bridges to liven things up. My wet-weather "wardrobe" proved effective, enhanced by the addition of some retro neoprene overshoes that I found in a dusty corner of the garage the previous weekend. Smile

A major plus point was that my winter tyres (Schwalbe Marathon Plus) are unexpectedly good in the wet. Handling felt like riding in the dry on skinny tyres, even through mud and standing water. Said tyres are supposedly puncture proof as well, which given their weight, they ought to be!

On my return, the DS headed out for a spot of training for an up coming fell-race. And she thinks I'm mad. Smile
Juggernaut

Schwalbe Marathon Plus have carried me and my luggage-laden bike across Europe for years - I wouldn't leave home without them! Great tyres...
Mrs John Murphy

Bartali, knowing your devotion to Uncle Gino, I am wondering whether you have considered adopting some of his methods. According to Will Fotheringham

Quote:

Gino Bartali didn't have a legendary healer, but he had plenty of his own wacky peasant ideas: vinegar compresses, tobacco applied locally from cigarette butts, grape juice rubs. He was a firm believer in the power of magnetic fields and aligned his hotel room bed north-south. Other potions of the time included extracts of bee and toad venom, ether, pure cola, egg yolks in port and cigarettes.


Is the Bart Cave on a North-South Axis, and did Uncle Gino have anything to say about painting your house red and riding a pink bike?
Bartali

Laughing  Laughing  Laughing

That explains everything .... my east west orientation is clearly my downfall!

In truth, the whole house isn't painted red.  The whole East Wing is duckegg blue as is the gate house at the end of the drive; and the servants quarters ..... well they're not painted at all!  Wink
SlowRower

2 hours in strong wind today. Tried a new route and found a few 16%+ pitches that I wasn't expecting. Encountered a speed-bump unexpectedly as well, necessitating Stan's first ever bunny-hop. Smile

Trialed new "un-aerodynamic but strong core" riding position and went slower, as expected, but my back didn't seize up, which it normally does in strong wind, so v pleased with this.
MAILLOT JAUNE

SlowRower wrote:
necessitating Stan's first ever bunny-hop. Smile

Chapeau SR - obviously a closet Cavendish fan!  Wink
SlowRower

Not so closet re Cav, I'd say. Must make my support clearer in future. Smile
Bartali

Only got out for 4 hours today, but was a bit tired after 7 hours of intervals yesterday Wink
SlowRower

Only 4 hours?

Tired?

It looks like I'll have to lend you my excuse book, as yours are pretty thin, even at this stage of the season. By May, I'll have built up to incidents affecting training that would be classed as implausible for a Hollywood disaster movie script. Smile
Guiness

Ms G spotted an article in today's Cycling  Weekly called " Be faster at 50 than at 40". Thought you all might like to know. Happy reading all - see page 46.
Mrs John Murphy

Guiness wrote:
Ms G spotted an article in today's Cycling  Weekly called " Be faster at 50 than at 40". Thought you all might like to know. Happy reading all - see page 46.


Was it an advert from the Spanish Beef Marketing Board?
CapeRoadie

Bartali wrote:
Only got out for 4 hours today, but was a bit tired after 7 hours of intervals yesterday Wink


Seven hours of intervals is serious overtraining.  Surely, you're including lunch and rest breaks in that...
Guiness

Mrs John Murphy wrote:
Guiness wrote:
Ms G spotted an article in today's Cycling  Weekly called " Be faster at 50 than at 40". Thought you all might like to know. Happy reading all - see page 46.


Was it an advert from the Spanish Beef Marketing Board?


Very Happy

Bartali

CapeRoadie wrote:
Bartali wrote:
Only got out for 4 hours today, but was a bit tired after 7 hours of intervals yesterday Wink


Seven hours of intervals is serious overtraining.  Surely, you're including lunch and rest breaks in that...
 Yup .... and a 6 hour sleep! Wink  Not sure whether you know I'm joking or not?
SlowRower

Quite possibly one of my least inspiring weeks of training ever. The Training Gods have clearly confused the Marmotte with a long distance race on foot, and conspired to leave me with only running as an option 4 days in a row. Each run was wetter and muddier than the last. Finally took to the turbo again this morning for an hour, and managed a season's best 42 minutes without having to stand up to relieve the pressure on my rear end.

I hope this "capiliarisation" malarkey is based on some solid science, as otherwise I've got soaked and bored myself brainless all week for nothing, other than burning off around 5000 calories. Smile
Guiness

2nd July is it?
Bartali

Almost certainly but there is a very small chance that it is the week after?
SlowRower

I can't say this stage of the training cycle ever leaves me wildly inspired. It's a long time until the main event (256 days) and the novelty of re-starting training with new goals has worn off a long time ago.

However, the Marmotte isn't going to get shorter just because I'm feeling sorry for myself and have a sore a*se from the turbo, so I'm bumbling through a fair volume of work, albeit with an emphasis on thinking about anything other than cycling whilst I'm doing it!

Yesterday's subject matter was food. I'd spectacularly misjudged my eating during the morning and ran out of gas with half an hour of my two hour ride remaining, and was starting to hallucinate about Red Leicester cheese ( Shocked ) as I got back home. No idea why as I don't really like it!

On the subject of food, I'm now more optimistic about the Marmotte. Research indicates that I will need to consume 5000 calories during the day. Which, is a chuff of a lot, when you pile it up on the worktop.




Add in water for the rice and it soon becomes apparent that the Marmotte is a challenge related to eating, with a bit of cycling on the side, rather than primarily a cycling event. Whilst I am all too well aware of my limitations as a cyclist, I am much more bullish about my ability to out eat the opposition. My small lungs allow an implausibly large stomach to be accommodated in my body, which in combination with a very large mouth and jaws of steel results in an eating machine to rival a Great White Shark.

Given the Marmotte terrain, I feel that it will be necessary to bring both the Butler and the Housekeeper on the expedition so that they can ensure that Fortnum and Mason hampers are available at regular intervals round the course. Smile
Guiness

Bartali wrote:
Almost certainly but there is a very small chance that it is the week after?


Update? 2nd July ...?
Slapshot 3

Update....Very Strong Rumour from my mate in France that next years Etape is stage 18 to the Galibier....... Agnol, Izoard and Galibier.......oh boy!!
Bartali

If so I might do the etape instead / as well as the Marmotte!!
SlowRower

There's two Etapes this year apparently. 11th and 17th July.

http://www.sportstoursinternational.co.uk/cycling/?c=Etape-du-Tour

Weekend Warrior heaven. Smile
bergaretxebe

SlowRower wrote:
There's two Etapes this year apparently. 11th and 17th July.

http://www.sportstoursinternational.co.uk/cycling/?c=Etape-du-Tour

Weekend Warrior heaven. Smile


Yes, and also ASO are going to organize the Paris - Roubaix cyclo, but with 120kms less!!!!!! what a waste!


http://www.letapedutour.com
Guiness

SlowRower wrote:
There's two Etapes this year apparently. 11th and 17th July.

http://www.sportstoursinternational.co.uk/cycling/?c=Etape-du-Tour

Weekend Warrior heaven. Smile


The 11th July one likes even one I would enjoy doing!
bergaretxebe

I haven't started my training yet, 2nd of November is the date circled in the calendar
Guiness

2nd Nov is nearly here, bergaretxebe!
Bartali

I'm starting training today as three months of take-aways has taken its toll on my waistline!
Guiness

Bartali wrote:
I'm starting training today as three months of take-aways has taken its toll on my waistline!


That is one big waistline then and one empty pocket!! 3 months??! Wwwwoowww.
Bartali

Okay .... not EVERY night! Wink
Guiness

Bartali wrote:
Okay .... not EVERY night! Wink


Working late?
SlowRower

Having started my training in early September, I don't know whether to feel smug, worried about peaking too early or depressed at being sufficiently crap to need to start training so early. Smile

Either way, there will be at least one person in the Marmotte who knows that I started training weeks before them, and this knowledge will somehow compell them to self-destruct on the slopes of the Galibier when I put the hammer down.

BTW - Did anyone just see a flying pig? Smile

Having moaned a bit recently about uninspiring training, a couple of cr*p weeks at work have reinforced just how enjoyable running through mud, riding into 360 degree headwinds and sweating half my bodyweight in a turbo session really are. Dealing with either the state, bankers or lawyers in isolation is bad enough, but dealing with the lawyers of state-owned banks is enough to drive a sane man over the edge and I wasn't particularly sane to start with.

Is it too early to hit the G&Ts yet? Smile
Guiness

Excellent! Make mine a pint - of Guinness. The real stuff. That put some hair on your chest.  And there was me thinking that starting training this week was "early". Not that I am doing the Marmotte. No intention. Ever.

PS: I have sympathy for you dealing with lawyers of state-owned banks!
SlowRower

Guiness wrote:
PS: I have sympathy for you dealing with lawyers of state-owned banks!


Thanks. Smile Just in case you are one, then I should observe that individually, all such people are perfectly fine and pleasant members of society. They merely appear to turn into miserable, unreasonable g*ts when executing the Queen's business.

PS: I said "Never" to the Marmotte many times in the past and look how that turned out. Sometimes, you just have to bow to the inevitable...Smile
Guiness

SlowRower wrote:
Guiness wrote:
PS: I have sympathy for you dealing with lawyers of state-owned banks!


Thanks. Smile Just in case you are one, then I should observe that individually, all such people are perfectly fine and pleasant members of society. They merely appear to turn into miserable, unreasonable g*ts when executing the Queen's business.


Nope. Not one of those. I'm an accountant. Retraining to be a teacher (!).
Bartali

Blimey .... another one!
Guiness

Bartali wrote:
Blimey .... another one!


Unfortunately so. Fiance is the lawyer - but a tax one. Not one of those "perfectly fine and pleasant" lawyers of state-owned banks. Wink
SlowRower

The mind boggles as to what an accountant and a lawyer talk about when together off duty!

Reminds me of the joke about the actuary, the accountant and the lawyer, but that can wait for another day...
Slapshot 3

All these flipping accountants.....no more scientists around....
Guiness

SlowRower wrote:
The mind boggles as to what an accountant and a lawyer talk about when together off duty!


Cycling Very Happy
SlowRower

Guiness wrote:
SlowRower wrote:
The mind boggles as to what an accountant and a lawyer talk about when together off duty!


Cycling Very Happy


Presumably with an emphasis on the cost of bikes and the rights/responsibilities of riders. Smile
Guiness

Laughing  Laughing  Laughing

She can state to me the new "penalty" that went into effect recently for me wanting the Pinarello Dogma (with all the trimming) and any violations if I even attempt to buy it that could cause me to be audited by the HMRC (AKA fiancé) whereas I would go over the financial aspects of preparing my taxes/monthly outgoings to show that I can acquire this said beautiful bike. Discussing things such as that I qualify for certain tax relief (AKA putting up with her recent new EXPENSIVE handbag purchase) and that I have made no errors on the returns (AKA I am marrying her after all!).

Wink
SlowRower

Following that, it has to be time for the actuary, accountant and lawyer joke...

An actuary, accountant and lawyer are down the pub discussing the benefits of a wife vs a mistress.

The accountant says a wife is better as there are tax benefits. (It's an old joke, originating from the days when the married couples' allwance existed.)

The lawyer says that a mistress is better, as a wife acquires rights to your assets and might leave you living in a cardboard box if she divorces you with the help of a slick lawyer.

The actuary says that it is best to have both, somewhat to the surprise of the others, given the actuarial profession's well-deserved reputation for being dull. When asked why, he responded that if you have both, you can tell the wife you're with the mistress and the mistress you're with the wife, leaving more time to stay in the office.

It's the way I tell 'em. Smile
Bartali

Get your coat SR .....
Guiness

SlowRower wrote:

It's the way I tell 'em. Smile


It's that or maybe they are just bad jokes... Wink

Got any of a dietician (retrained as a tax lawyer) and an accountant (retraining as a teacher)? Yup that's how it goes for Mr and Ms G! Unconventional career paths me thinks...
SlowRower

Guiness wrote:
SlowRower wrote:

It's the way I tell 'em. Smile


It's that or maybe they are just bad jokes... Wink


Consider yourself struck off my Christmas Card list.

You too, Bart.

I'm deeply traumatised by this whole exchange. Smile
berck

SlowRower wrote:
Guiness wrote:
SlowRower wrote:

It's the way I tell 'em. Smile


It's that or maybe they are just bad jokes... Wink


Consider yourself struck off my Christmas Card list.

You too, Bart.

I'm deeply traumatised by this whole exchange. Smile


We are too after reading that joke Wink
SlowRower

berck wrote:
SlowRower wrote:
Guiness wrote:
SlowRower wrote:

It's the way I tell 'em. Smile


It's that or maybe they are just bad jokes... Wink


Consider yourself struck off my Christmas Card list.

You too, Bart.

I'm deeply traumatised by this whole exchange. Smile


We are too after reading that joke Wink


B*gger. That's one of my best ever jokes as well. Sad
Slapshot 3

SlowRower wrote:
berck wrote:
SlowRower wrote:
Guiness wrote:
SlowRower wrote:

It's the way I tell 'em. Smile


It's that or maybe they are just bad jokes... Wink


Consider yourself struck off my Christmas Card list.

You too, Bart.

I'm deeply traumatised by this whole exchange. Smile


We are too after reading that joke Wink


B*gger. That's one of my best ever jokes as well. Sad


I might be forced to delete that from the Jokes thread it's so bad!
SlowRower

Significant day today - not only the coldest ever recorded in Yorkshire, but the day I handed over my credit card details to the Frenchies. I'm not backing out now. Us Yorkies know all about value for money. Smile
Guiness

SlowRower wrote:
Significant day today - not only the coldest ever recorded in Yorkshire, but the day I handed over my credit card details to the Frenchies. I'm not backing out now. Us Yorkies know all about value for money. Smile


Good luck. Yorkies might know the value of money, but this Irish/Italian lad here has some sense by not entering! What on earth possessed you??!! Rivalry with Bartali?  Wink  Like I said - good luck, mate.
SlowRower

Guiness wrote:
What on earth possessed you??


Alcohol, if truth be told!

Seriously, I've been active sport-wise all my adult life, primarily rowing (first on the water, then indoors on machines) with a bit of cycling, swimming and running thrown in every so often as well (occasionally all together as a triathlon!)

I'm mildly addicted to exercise, and eat like a Great White shark, so I need to do a lot of exercise of some sort or another to avoid going insane and getting fat. Mrs SR says that I'm OK as eccentric and thin, but doesn't want me going barking mad and wasting money on a new, larger wardrobe,

My main focus was rowing until mid 2008 when I b*ggered my back once too often and reluctantly decided to hang up my lycra. Shortly after this, I bumped into an old friend on holiday, who had got into cycling, and we got beered up, started talking b*llocks, including how quickly we might cycle up Alpe D'Huez. The Marmotte was the natural end result of this sort of discussion.

He was muttering about the Raid Pyrenean and Iron Man Triathlons when I last spoke to him, so the Marmotte could be just a stepping stone to something really insane. Smile

Bart has encouraged me to do the Marmotte for some months and offered much useful advice, but we don't have a rivalry as we've never met in wheel to wheel combat to judge whether we're closely enough matched to bother with such macho posturing. Although I'll happily settle for getting round without my back seizing up, I won't pass on the opportunity to show him that 10kg of Boardman aluminium (my trusty steed) is better than half that of Italian carbon, should such an opportunity arise. Smile

Thanks for the good wishes - I'm sure I'll need tham and an awful lot more to get round!
Bartali

Guiness wrote:
Rivalry with Bartali?
 SR is younger, slimmer and fitter ... all I have is a lighter steed.

No rivalry on my part!
SlowRower

Bartali wrote:
Guiness wrote:
Rivalry with Bartali?
 SR is younger, slimmer and fitter ... all I have is a lighter steed.

No rivalry on my part!


But you are far better looking than me, a situation that can only be exacerbated by me spending several hours in the saddle.  Sad
Slapshot 3

SlowRower wrote:
Bartali wrote:
Guiness wrote:
Rivalry with Bartali?
 SR is younger, slimmer and fitter ... all I have is a lighter steed.

No rivalry on my part!


But you are far better looking than me, ....  Sad


........said SR in a butch and manly way Rolling Eyes  Wink  Wink
SlowRower

Slapshot 3 wrote:
SlowRower wrote:
Bartali wrote:
Guiness wrote:
Rivalry with Bartali?
 SR is younger, slimmer and fitter ... all I have is a lighter steed.

No rivalry on my part!


But you are far better looking than me, ....  Sad


........said SR in a butch and manly way Rolling Eyes  Wink  Wink


It's all mind games, SS. I'm obviously much better looking than Bart really. Smile
Bartali

I'm not saying a thing ....

SlowRower

Thanks, Bart. You got my good side. Smile
Guiness

SlowRower wrote:
Bartali wrote:
Guiness wrote:
Rivalry with Bartali?
 SR is younger, slimmer and fitter ... all I have is a lighter steed.

No rivalry on my part!


But you are far better looking than me, a situation that can only be exacerbated by me spending several hours in the saddle.  Sad


Are you telling me that Bartali is the good-looking one and the richer one? So what are you? The younger one and the modest one?  Wink

mmmm..... who is the happiest in life I wonder....?
SlowRower

Guiness wrote:
SlowRower wrote:
Bartali wrote:
Guiness wrote:
Rivalry with Bartali?
 SR is younger, slimmer and fitter ... all I have is a lighter steed.

No rivalry on my part!


But you are far better looking than me, a situation that can only be exacerbated by me spending several hours in the saddle.  Sad


Are you telling me that Bartali is the good-looking one and the richer one? So what are you? The younger one and the modest one?  Wink

mmmm..... who is the happiest in life I wonder....?


I'm younger, but Bart is superior in all other respects. Smile

I'm a happy type pretty much all the time, except when my back suffers a relapse. Sad
Bartali

SlowRower wrote:
I'm younger, but Bart is superior in all other respects.


You are too modest young man!
Guiness

SlowRower wrote:
Guiness wrote:
SlowRower wrote:
Bartali wrote:
Guiness wrote:
Rivalry with Bartali?
 SR is younger, slimmer and fitter ... all I have is a lighter steed.

No rivalry on my part!


But you are far better looking than me, a situation that can only be exacerbated by me spending several hours in the saddle.  Sad


Are you telling me that Bartali is the good-looking one and the richer one? So what are you? The younger one and the modest one?  Wink

mmmm..... who is the happiest in life I wonder....?


I'm younger, but Bart is superior in all other respects. Smile

I'm a happy type pretty much all the time, except when my back suffers a relapse. Sad


So young and happy - but Bart good-looking rich and modest (but unhappy).  Very Happy

What a pair!   Rolling Eyes

Maybe we need a thread on "what characteristics are required for a person to enter and do well in La Marmotte".  Smile

SR- good to be happy pretty much all the time. Money and good looks don't buy happiness. Life can throw some crap at you so won't be any good sulking and doing nothing about it.  I once saw something that really made me think (rare occurence, I know): "if you are unhappy, then do something about it". I did. Anyway I am going off track now.

As for back problems. My fiance used to be a rower like I said (before I converted her to cycling!). She said to me that she used to get problems when she rowed but then she swapped to sculling her back was always on good form. Something to do with even balance/not pulling on just one side? You probably know more than me here. She used to have to do lots of stretching and core stability exercises. To this day she still does do core stability exercises. I think it helps her with being on the bike for long hours. I once went to a yoga class with her. Once was enough!! Embarrassing seeing a man in his 40s not able to bend into those positions(or touch his toes)  Embarassed Let's just say I can do more positions in bed rather than on a yoga mat... if you catch my drift, gents.  Wink
berck

SlowRower wrote:

I'm younger, but Bart is superior in all other respects. Smile


Ok, I can accept the fact that Bart is superior in all other respects, but no way is the man 70+ years old. Your picture puts you at least in your late 60's. Wink
SlowRower

Guiness wrote:
Maybe we need a thread on "what characteristics are required for a person to enter and do well in La Marmotte".  Smile


Mad on the one hand; large lungs and a leather a*se on the other!

Mrs SR is an ex-rower as well. I've never tried yoga as I need to concentrate all my efforts on maintaining stamina - Mrs SR is somewhat more aerobically gifted than me.  Very Happy
SlowRower

My last hope for a non-embarrassing reprieve from the Marmotte disappeared today, when my GP signed the form to declare me fit to ride.

I have to admit that my plan all along was to train hard and then have my GP declare me unfit, given her detailed knowledge of the state my back is really in, allowing me a way to not compete without appearing to be a wimp. I guess I'll have to ride the bl**dy thing now. Smile
Bartali

Very Happy  Very Happy  Very Happy
SlowRower

When I bounded athletically into the consulting room, and asked her to sign a medical certificate, she simply asked "Etape, Marmotte or Ironman?" Smile
Clearly a GP with her finger on the pulse of male mid-life crises.

Didn't get charged either, so I made a donation.
SlowRower

Admin guff received from Marmotte HQ today.

The rules have been tightened up this year, as doping is now officially banned. They must have heard I was coming. Smile

Littering is "interdit" and a helmet "obligatoire". Are the Frenchies coming over all dull and boring, or are these just rules to be ignored?

Bart's underweight bike is still definitely legal though. Shame he's shorter than me otherwise I might have considered stealing it for the day. Smile
Guiness

SlowRower wrote:
Admin guff received from Marmotte HQ today.

The rules have been tightened up this year, as doping is now officially banned. They must have heard I was coming. Smile


Is that 'cause of all the pills rattling in your stomach or the chocolate yazoo?  Wink

SlowRower wrote:
Bart's underweight bike is still definitely legal though. Shame he's shorter than me otherwise I might have considered stealing it for the day. Smile


You can always chop off your legs. Not only can you then take Bart's bike but also you'll have less weight to carry up those darn climbs. Very Happy

Come Chrimbo you might want to ask Mrs SR VERY nicely for a Parlee.... No need next year for doping, stealing or chopping...
Fontfroide

SlowRower wrote:


Littering is "interdit" and a helmet "obligatoire". Are the Frenchies coming over all dull and boring, or are these just rules to be ignored?


I have a friend who lives on route de Ventoux, the bit before it starts going up, outside Bedoin.  She has stories about littering.  And that is only for a normal week of riders climbing Ventoux.  For most people, sticking the wrapper back in the pocket is not such a big deal.  As for helmets, it's a race right?  I am not sure what happens in the UK, but in France I have never seen picture of race without helmets.  

Am I missing something?

By the way, the Marmotte is so hard, I would never even think about it.  My hat is off to you and I hope you do well.  Even finishing is a feat.  But you know that.  Good luck.
Guiness

Fontfroide wrote:


By the way, the Marmotte is so hard, I would never even think about it.  My hat is off to you and I hope you do well.  Even finishing is a feat.  But you know that.  Good luck.


Here, here!!! salut
SlowRower

Guiness wrote:
Fontfroide wrote:


By the way, the Marmotte is so hard, I would never even think about it.  My hat is off to you and I hope you do well.  Even finishing is a feat.  But you know that.  Good luck.


Here, here!!! salut


Thanks!

I've played my penultimate card today - buying new tyres (Conti GP 4000s) and tubes (valved condoms by the look of things!)

The final card is the ongoing "Limited opportunities to eat after kitchen refurbishment works commence" weight management strategy aka "Baked potatoes at work and toasted sarnies for tea". Even Lance didn't play this card, so I'm feeling pretty smug. Down to 77kg and loose change this morning. Smile
Bartali

SlowRower wrote:
I've played my penultimate card today - buying new tyres (Conti GP 4000s) and tubes (valved condoms by the look of things!) ... Down to 77kg and loose change this morning. Smile

77kg!  Is that you or Stan the bike?

Wink  Wink
SlowRower

Bartali wrote:
SlowRower wrote:
I've played my penultimate card today - buying new tyres (Conti GP 4000s) and tubes (valved condoms by the look of things!) ... Down to 77kg and loose change this morning. Smile

77kg!  Is that you or Stan the bike?

Wink  Wink


That's both of us!

Be afraid - particularly of porcine aviators...

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