Monday, 14 July 2014

3 stories

I haven't updated for a while and there has been a lot happening. So this is going to be a big post... It will probably take you several hours to read and decipher. You've been warned.

The Story of The Shaven Legs.
Many of you may have noticed, and some of you have already commented on it. I've started shaving my legs. This must seem like quite a strange thing for those that know me and know how anti men shaving legs I have been in the past. Cyclists, swimmers, triathletes, runners even some rugby players... there are many sportsmen that shave their legs. The arguments ranging from aerodynamics to hairs being pulled out whilst getting massages. I've even heard of a rugby player claiming it made his legs slippery and easier to escape out of tackles. Then there are arguments about how it helps reduce the chance of infection after crashing off a bike. Very few say they shave their legs for the reason that it looks good... In the past I've been pretty sure this was the only reason they did it and have taken to making fun of sportsmen who shave their legs. I now take it all back.
I mentioned in my last blog that I cut my leg pretty bad after a fall at sognefjell. The decision to shave my legs came about a week after the crash when I pulled my trousers down to go to the loo. Inadvertently I managed to knock a large section of the scab off from where my leg had been cut... this caused me to yelp, but I noticed it wasn't actually the scab coming off that was sore. My leg hair had become matted and tangled in with the scab and as the scab came off it took with it the hair. I decided there has to be an easier way, and seeing as I am fairly prone to falling over it is highly likely that I could end up in a similar situation in the future. And that was it. I shaved my legs the next day.

The Story of Being Home in Scotland.
I'm home in Scotland at the moment. It's fantastic. Scotland in July is brilliant. There are fresh strawberries in the garden, the raspberries are ripening early this year, the weather is generally pretty warm even if there are one or two wet days. For training it is perfect. The weather isn't so warm that I have to alter all my training around it, but it's warm enough to train in shorts and t-shirt and be outside for most of the day. Staying at home is great as well. There's always food, the freezer and fridge are fully stocked and I get to eat stuff you can't get in Norway. Proper cheese, home made chutney and pickled onions!
Even things like showering is better at home. In Norway you can get this "sports" shower gel called dobel dusch. It is cheap, and comes with the scent of "mens changing rooms". It's pretty much all any sportsman my age buys in Norway. You see it at the gym, and indeed our shower in Lillehammer has 3 bottles of it neatly lined up on the shelf. At home however, the shower has a relative buffet of soaps, shampoos and conditioners to choose from. Lavender one day, and fruits of the forrest the next... or maybe even coconut if I'm feeling adventurous. It's wild. The soaps here have more edible things in them than my fridge. Anyone who doesn't admit it is lying... even though we only ever buy cheap dobel dusch, we secretly want to be going around smelling like fresh lavender.

The Story of When I Trained a Lot
At risk of this blog turning rather feminine I've decided I better add an update from last week. Last weeks training couldn't have been any more laddish if I'd tried.
Once again Muzzy had invited some of his friends from Norway to come over and train for a week. Callum had invited a couple of his friends from the year he spent in Hovden to come over as well. I knew all the guys from training over in Norway and 4 of them are also on my private team, Team Synnfjell. Muzzy invited me to come a long and join in the training for the week. All together we were 11 people.
We trained a lot. I trained just over 30 hours for the week, which is actually only my 3rd week ever over 30 hours. And all of the training was done at "lads" tempo, fast. There was quite a lot of level 2, and quite a lot of it I was just trying to keep up with the person in front for as long as I could. There was also a few occasions that I got dropped. But most of us had a few off sessions where we didn't keep up the whole way.
In Norway I can average up to 20km/h rollerskiing on big roads that are generally fast and flat. Here we had the same average speeds on small country roads with rough road surfaces and with lots of small hills and twists and turns. Rarely long straight sections. So we were going fast.
As well as rollerskiing we had a couple of good running sessions on Bennachie. Yesterday we had an endurance session to finish the camp off. 4 hours double poling followed by 2 hours running. My heart rate monitor reckons I burned 6500 calories during the session, and the recommended daily allowance is 2500 calories... But the 6500 is the total for 6 hours of the day so I would give a rough estimate at somewhere between 8000 and 9000 for the number of calories I burned yesterday. Or roughly 35 mars bars. When we are burning so much we have to eat just as much. I ate lunch at Andrew's and dinner there a couple of nights. His mum is a fantastic cook and I have to thank her for letting me eat there and providing great food! Perhaps the reason we went so fast all week was that we were fuelled by Hillary's  home made chutney!
We watched the world cup final last night, although I was pretty angry they didn't manage to get it finished in 90mins... it forced me to stay up an extra 30min when all I wanted to do was go to bed. Today I'm having a well deserved rest day. Sleeping a lot and of course updating the blog.

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