I finished W2D3 of the C25K last Thursday. I’m allowing myself more rest days in between runs. I’m afraid I’ll injure myself (which happened in the past a few times). This time I’m going slow and steady. Losing weight and gaining strength is not a sprint. It’s a long distance run.

So what else happened? Well, my Apple Watch broke. The faceplate came off due to a swollen battery. Apple knows about this problem and extended the warranty with two more years. The extended warranty didn’t apply to me. The guy at the store was helpful but not the outcome I was hoping.

I got myself some superglue and glued the thing together. I wonder how long it will last. At least it’s working again. I missed this piece of technology around my wrist. Should be saving money for a Garmin forerunner 935. But it’s not going to happen soon as I’m eyeing to purchase a road bike!

I’ve been looking online at different road bikes. Just a simple bike to start cycling and I’ve got my eye on a Canyon Endurance 6.0 or a Rose Pro SL. Not sure which one to purchase yet but both companies have a great store in Germany. It’s a two-hour drive but worth it. The will do a proper fitting which is a big plus. Once my tax money is my account, it’s bike time!

I’ll keep you posted for week three. Should start W3D1 on Sunday.

 

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I.

Introduction

This morning I finished W2D1 (Week 2, Day 1). I picked up the C25K (Couch to 5K) routine again after finishing this ten years ago. Back then the program helped me eventually in running my first half marathon: the Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon in San Jose, CA. Three weeks ago I got triggered to pick up running again and since I was successful in the past why not give it another shot? It’s not just picking up running; it’s changing my lifestyle. Having a desk job doesn’t help your overall fitness.

I made a promise to a friend of mine (who got into running a year ago) that we are going to run the Rotterdam marathon together. Having a goal always helps me to get motivated. Same as I did ten years ago. Once you register for a race or event, it’s becoming real. Not sure which edition we’re going to run, but I’m aiming for 2020.

So here we are. Just got into week two. I am building up my stamina with some basic interval training. I’ll keep you posted!

Finished W2D1. . . . #C25K #cardio #running #treadmillworkout #treadmill

Een bericht gedeeld door Richard L (@becomingabetterself) op

A.

Attempting a metric century

Ever since my brother and I picked up my bike at Canyon one of the goals was to ride a metric century before the end of the year. I’ve been reading all about these epic rides and despite the advice from every single blogger not to ride 100 KM as a beginner I decided to be a rebel and follow my gut feeling.

Hills, hills, hills

I planned a route in Strava and rode it virtually in Google maps a few times to see what was ahead of me. The route gave me 1.024 m elevation gain, so a good preparation was half the ride! Climbing would start after 10K, and the highest point would be around the 43K mark (289m). I’ve been cycling around the hills the last couple of weeks so I had an indicator of how hard it would be. My biggest fear was the climb of the Epenerbaan which is the descent of the Camerig, the hardest hill to climb in the Netherlands. Besides the Epenerbaan I had to conquer the Korte Raarberg, the Bergseweg, the Eperheide, and the Piemert. After the Piemert (basically halfway) it would be downhill to Maastricht. My last 20K would take me alongside the canal which I’ve been cycling weekly now.

The best rides are the ones where you bite off more than you can chew, and live through it – Doug Bradbury

The temperature wasn’t too bad when I started this morning: around 5 degrees Celsius. The first test was the ‘Korte Raar.’ A steep little hill leading up to it’s bigger brother the ‘Lange Raar.’ The steepest part is around 11%, and it wasn’t too bad. Plenty of time to recuperate before the next hill: the Bergseweg. I followed the advice of my colleague: ride your own pace. Smallest sprocket and comfortably keeping a cadence you can hold for some time.

Don’t blow up!

Trying no to blow up. This is actually what I did the whole ride. After the Bergseweg I followed the road to Trintelen, and from there you fly to Eys. After Eys, it’s the zwartebrugweg. A steep little fucker. Took a few minutes off on top of the plateau with a beautiful view! From here it’s 10 km to Vaals which is uphill all the way. Not too bad though as it never gets too difficult. In Vaals I took a right past the police station. First, it’s downhill pretty fast until you get to the bottom of the Epenerbaan.

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I thought this one was going to be hard but overall pretty much doable. Don’t get me wrong, the part before and after the hairpin is brutal but short of a distance. Before you know it, you will begin the descent of the Camerig to Epen.

In Epen I had a short stop to refuel at the local supermarket just at the base of the Julianastraat climb to Heijenrath. After Heijenrath there is just one more climb to Hoogcruts, and that was all the climbing I had to do for today. The wind was picking up, and I had to hold on to my bike going downhill as the wind gusts nearly knocked me off my bike. After arriving in Eijsden, I finally had a tailwind bringing me in no time to Maastricht.

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A metric century: almost done

Right before Maastricht, my legs felt they were mash… I had been on the bike for 4 hours, and the saddle was giving me some discomfort. Once I was on the Kennedy bridge, I either could continue for another hour or go straight home. I decided to give it a shot and headed towards Kanne, Belgium. I instantly had a fierce headwind again and regretted my decision. I turned around and headed home. I knew the last 10K would be a struggle and not worth it.

I still had an excellent ride, and now I know what I’m into when trying to ride a metric century.