For a while I’d been looking forward to Easter weekend, which would be the first opportunity this year to do some training abroad. I considered a couple of options, but after a short deliberation there was only one sensible option this early in the year: pay a visit to the start. So off to Geraardsbergen!
My parents decided to join me and we ended up staying at B&B de Pepelinck in Denderwindeke. I’d heartily recommend it to anyone who’s still looking for lodging in the lead up to the event. The welcome is very warm, the rooms are spacious and it’s just a leisurely 10 to 18 km (depending on the route you chose) to the Muur, which is a pleasant warm up for the climb.
I learned a couple of things this weekend:
- My route planning needs improvement.
- Cobbled climbs are difficult, but a lot of fun!
- Cobbled descents are also difficult, but not so much fun.
- I need a new charger cable.
I planned to ride the first little bit of my route towards Puy de Dome, maybe even passing the French border. But once I was up the Muur, I noticed my phone wasn’t charging. Apparently the charger cable decided this was a good day to stop working (it’s been looking like the above image for a while, but didn’t cause any problems before). As I still haven’t invested in a Garmin, my phone was both my navigation and my communication and it was already down to 20%. At that point I decided it wasn’t a good idea to carry on, and it was best to wait for my parents, who were also heading to the Muur on their own pace. While waiting, I rode up the Muur a few more times, so I would at least get some much needed climbing training done, while also getting acquainted with the climb.
So although I didn’t get as many kms in as intended, I don’t think all was lost. I feel very assured to know where we’re starting from, so that’s one less thing to worry about once the race starts. Also, I’m happy the electronic and navigational malfunctions happened now, plenty of time to work on that. And I still got some decent mileage in. Not sure how much exactly, because I couldn’t record the rides anymore, but any hour spent on the bike is a good one. And lastly, Daylight Saving started this weekend, which means more hours for after work rides. Time to kick it up a notch! 4 more months…