Maybe 4Islands Croatia 2023
Thanks for asking Alan.
Like you I’m feeling ‘what’s next’? Despite not making it, the Alps were my focus for so long.
I’ve let myself come off the boil. Still feeling the effects of covid but it’s almost gone now. Have let myself chill, drink beer and have grown a small paunch .
2 more weeks of this and I’ll have returned from a family holiday. Will then knuckle down to business.
So whats on my agenda?
1st week October: 7-10 day bikepacking trip around Wales with a mate. Chilled, fun and adventurous.
Mid October; my first running marathon, I’m a real newby to this. Beachy Head marathon which is on the South Downs .
6th November; Bearbones 200. 24+hrs bikepacking race.
I’ve had some pretty low times since getting ill. It really hit me hard physically and broke me mentally. Had to block all social media as friends went off on holidays and adventures. However, I now have hope and ambition again.
If you want my advice from someone 4 weeks ahead of you mentally: let go! Kick back, let your mind mix the pot. Be lazy and normal for a while and when it’s ready your brain will spit out the next challenge like an old, ticker tape printer.
2 weeks later and i feel like i have the bug for this kind of event. Normally after a big effort i don’t want to see my bike for a while but now i am keen to get out again and keep training.
Have learnt lots and being a youngster of 41 plenty of time left!
@kpedal you mentioned you had ambitions of finishing up the field, how did you do in the end?
Pretty good. I did not get the fight I was hoping for in the category but did found others to mess with.
Overall not satisfied and would not do it again. Nothing wrong with TA but it is not for me.
@kpedal Am I right in thinking you absolutely sailed to victory in the singles masters???
OK, score (or time) time. I did better than expected 10th in Grand Masters Team catagory. We deliberately started easy and picked up the pace. This worked well expect for stage 4, really don’t know what happened there.
Stage 1: 6:22.24 (18th)
Stage 2: 5:57.40 (17th)
Stage 3: 3:36.01 (15th)
Stage 4 6:26.29 (20th)
Stage 5 5:53.40 (11th)
Stage 6 7:29.31 (10th)
Stage 7 4:34.50 (10th)
This is the long, hot valley ride and the restart stage. Perhaps you did not fuel and hydrate properly and bonked on the last timed part. It was easy to underestimate that last section.
I know I did and paid for it dearly. Bonking even for a short time is damaging, like overheating an engine.
Just wanted to share a nice story.
Two months or so after pulling out of my race due to covid, I finally felt well enough to do a bikepacking weekend. I’ve barely ridden a bike, just a handful of short rides, but I have been doing a couple of hours of easy running each week.
So this weekend have just knocked off a tough 160mile off-road route in about 22hrs riding time with a nice bivy midway. Was wondering how I’d cope but it seems that all those training rides for the Alps, all those hours I put in, have stayed with me. I felt great throughout the two days and was still climbing strongly at the end.
How cool is that?
@grawp That’s great news you are fully recovered and able to get out again.
Bikebacking is something I like the idea of but never tried. Any recommendations for an easy introduction for beginner?
SDW. 100miles, off road, easy navigation, beautiful views, water taps every ten miles or so. Very tolerant attitude to sleeping up there too.
People use gravel bikes, but I prefer an mtb.
Do it over two days and take your time. It’s a big ride to do in one hit and you want to be fresh enough to enjoy the biggest hills at the eastern end assuming you ride west to east.
The temptation is strong…
Being a punter race did not work it seems.
Anyway, do not sign up before seeing the route.
Next year should be NW route wich has more trails than this years route…
I would love to go again but think that I won’t be committing to any big expenses as mortgage is up for renewal! Maybe in a couple of years.
I could do it a lot cheaper by using the camp and making sure my bike was setup better.
The route was fine for me but I do understand it’s hard to balance it for people at the front of the race and the back!
@ukcarl go on, you know you want to!
I do want to, but like you the cost, plus time away from family is a bit much 2 years in a row.
Probably in 2024 if everything is OK. Next year I am doing this, a kind of Trans ALP lite (cheaper and less time away)
It’s that time of year isn’t it, when the what’s next question starts to show up.
I’ve got a bunch of new options now as i did my first marathon a couple of week ago, the Beachy Head off road one, and absolutely loved it. Here in the UK there’s a million trail marathons and ultras to chose from so there’s a bunch of adventures on offer.
I also rode a 4 day bikepacking trip through Snowdonia this October which was amazing. Again the UK has a wealth of these types of adventures on offer.
I do still have an unanswered question of how I’d have done in the Alps if I hadn’t got covid. I still have all the gpx files for the Alps Epic on my gps and have been toying with the idea of camping in the area and riding a selection of them. Maybe throw a couple of mountain running days in there too.
I’m a couple of years from vet 50. Still a chance of one more serious race period in my life before happily retiring to just touring.
I am currently planning on doing chase the sun which is a double century on road from Whitley bay to Ayr on the longest day of the year. Plan is to start at sunrise and complete by sunset.
Need to plan some other things in the lead upto that and after.
I had a friend do the one in the south this year. It was about 130miles i think. She loved it.
my name is Pascal and I’m new here! Must say I love your chat and it helped me already a lot.
I’ve started mountain-biking 1.5 years ago and felt in love with it … now I’ve registered for the 2023 Transalp as well. Might have done a mistake, but would love to pick-up this challenge and these experience and atmosphere in the alps.
Anyone from you registered as well for July 2023?