So one week became a month, and a month became two. The race report promised, never came. The Tour de Helsinki 2012 was a hard struggle for me. As planned we began with the 32km/h group, and that should have been an easy task.
But the race followed the trend that seemed to have followed me the whole summer. In the first 20 km I was involved in a crash. The paceline I was in, suddenly pulled the brakes in a descent and I had to react. I tried to find a path slightly out of the line, and at the same time i had to pull the brakes too. At the same time the guy behind me didn't react fast enough and he ended up overlapping my rear wheel (if you're unfamiliar with the term overlapping, check the description on cyclingtips.com.au).
He crashed and was followed by a couple of other riders. A very unpleasant sound of carbon and steel cracking and sliding along the asphalt was followed by the crash. Because of this my chain jumped off and I had to make a stop. I was driving in the outer line so it took me a while to get to the side of the road to put the chain back.
So as the previous year, I found myself chasing my fellow riders. A couple of ambulances along the roads, and it really felt pretty unstable, the pack was nervous. Riders had dropped in the first section of hills, and it was pretty hard to find the others. At the rear of the main 32km/h group I found one friend, and stayed there. But the effort I had made, didn't come for free. I was able to eat and drink as planned, but in the 90th km I found for the first time a cramp in my left thigh. This is nothing you want to have when you still got 50km to go... So I tried to eat what I had left and to drink more.
But it was too late, a moment later I had the same cramp feeling in my right thigh. At the same time we approached the open windy section, the last 30km would be headwinds. This combination was too much. With both thighs and the right calf muscle in cramp I had to ease the pace. The last 20km I just pedaled to get to the finish, and my time was almost 20 minutes worse than the previous year.
It was the first time ever for me to have cramp issues, and probably not the last. Tour de Helsinki 2012 was pretty much like the whole summer. It was also more or less the end of my outdoor season 2012, two months earlier than the previous year. I took a month off cycling and tried to get my back in shape again. A month later, just weeks ago I began the indoor cycling season. I'll give a heads up on that and other training stuff in the next update. This time, within a month ;)
You might have also noticed a slight change on the site. I hope it's now easier to read and hopefully easier to navigate with both browser and mobile.
Have a good one!