A Pedal to Paris Training Update – Help!

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A Pedal to Paris Training Update – Help!

I sat down yesterday with the calendar. According to ical, I have 7 weeks until my ‘Pedal to Paris’ ride. That is only 35 week days (with 3 left in hand for emergency training). I’m going to have to focus! 

I then sat down with the suggested Training Programme given to me by kind Graham from the Royal British Legion back in the new year and studied it. The only possible conclusion to make is that I’m going to have to shape up pretty fast. Just look at this:

Suggested Training Programme:

Please note that a gentle cycle to and from
work each day is not going to be enough.

Oh dear…see how the trainers have gone out of their way to point out rather firmly that gentle cycling just won’t cut it; they must know that I’m all too happy to harbour this kind of fatal delusion.

5-6 months before

You should be aiming to cover a minimum of
60 miles a week. Break it down into manageable
pieces: try two short 15 milers a week and a
30 miler at the weekend with a pit stop.

I’ve sort of done that (more or less). Hurrah!

3-4 months before

You should try to cover about the same distance

during the week i.e. total 30 miles, but aim to

increase the weekend ride to 40-45 miles, with
some pit stops.

Oh no – I haven’t done the weekender 40/ 45 miles at all – not even with lots of pit stops –  but I have done the right mileage. Do you think that will count?
1-2 months before
You should now have longer days and more light.
Try to increase your weekday rides to 20 miles
each but keeping your weekend ride to 40-45
miles, as before.

So this is where I should be now. The weekday rides are in hand but  I’ve got to start doing the 40-45 mile rides from scratch.


In 7 weeks, I’ve got to be able to cycle:

Day 1: London to Calais (129km)

Day 2: Calais to Abbeville (120.9km)

Day 3: Abbeville to Beauvais (106.9km)

Day 4: Beauvais to Paris (100.8km)



To focus the mind, I have acquired a new top to cycle in:

yellow jersey.jpg


What do you think of it? I was worried in case people would mistake it for ‘The Yellow Jersey’…

  1. [Definition of yellow jersey (n)

    Bing Dictionary
    • yel·low jer·sey
    1. race leader’s jersey: in the Tour de France, the jersey awarded to the cyclist with the fastest elapsed time at a completed stage of the race]

The Agent however has reassured me, saying there’s absolutely no possibility that anyone would ever make such a mistake. He has said though, that it is very…yellow.

Yours, confidently looking forward to feeling both focused and high viz…

LLH signature


  1. A college roommate of mine took up rowing one year. His personal training routine was to go rowing very early in the morning, return, run himself an extremely hot bath, pour a very large gin and tonic and retreat with same into the bathroom for the next half hour. He claimed this was very invigorating. Perhaps you could explore this as an alternative to Jo’s suggestion?

    • Now that sounds much more my kind of après-bike ride regime. Would I get the gin and tonic (v. large size) & hot bath past Billy? What an amazing start to the day; no wonder your room-mate felt invigorated for his 9.00am lecture! I’m sure he was the sort of student who would go far in life – he’s probably a judge or something by now…

  2. It’s all about recovery at the end of each day within half an hour of getting off the bike you must drink the isotonic drinks (great slurps) or orange juice with lots of salt stirred in! I don’t suppose iced baths are available. Jo likes to wear Baggy shorts to help oxygen get into the muscles while stretching his hamstrings, but Johnny thinks this is not sports science. Anyway point is, don’t collapse straight into bed! This is advice from Jo, Johnny’s intern, who does this kind of thing!

    • Iced baths and slurping- what???? I had no idea that they might be involved when I signed up. And I can’t collapse straight after finishing but have to do stretching exercises? I always stagger straight for a little lie down. I feel a bit despondent now – a minute ago, I was thinking a lovely new top and a bit of concentration would do it. Iced baths…agggghhh!

  3. Good luck, Lady Liberty! I am very impressed already by the mileage you’ve covered – not for the faint of heart! Best wishes!

    • Oh gosh, that’s so kind of you! I’m enjoying it but I’m so slow…all the other cyclists I meet absolutely whiz past me every time. Thank you for yr. good wishes – I know from ‘The Globetrotting Guitarist’ that you do a lot of cycling, Kate and they mean a lot to me.

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