italy

Road Cycling Year 2013

As always, I like to look back at the year that passed, it often brigs up things you've forgotten and great memories you really can remember as they were yesterday. In year 2013 I had both good and bad memories, gladly more good ones, therefore a lot different from year 2012. 

The year began with great inspiration and motivation for training. For the first time I really spent qualitative time at the gym and had a good plan on the trainer. And sure, I made some great progress throughout the winter and early spring. For the first time, I also was able to compare watt data to the previous year, thanks to Trainerroad.

Silent gym early in the morning

Silent gym early in the morning

The outdoor season begun March 23rd with taking the car to a place without snow and then cycling that short distance back and forth. In year 2013 the season begun 2 weeks later than in 2012, and it took more time for the snow to melt, hence the season really begun almost a month later. This didn't matter since I had tracked some good hours on the trainer throughout the winter. In March for the first time ever, I had symptoms of overtraining.

First ride of the year, plenty of snow around

First ride of the year, plenty of snow around

The cycling year 2013 was also the year for me to ride hard, in groups with faster riders and great company where the whole group was working in an echelon against various wind directions. I also participated in races, many new for me. 

The first race in 2013 though was the Giro d'Espoo. It was super windy but amazingly fun, once again. The second race was Pirkan Pyöräily. It was the first time I participated in this event, and I'm really glad I did. A really well organized event in Tampere brought my personal record average of 36,1 km/h. 

The weather throughout the summer was really superb, so it was great rides almost all summer around. The biggest factor for me progressing was to start with Resistentia and to finally get a proper bike fit done. I will review the service more precisely at some point, but they really helped me track some kilometers and add quality to my training on the bike.

No doubt summer is the best of the seasons

No doubt summer is the best of the seasons

The third race of the year was Royal Cycling, another new event in my calendar. And yet another superb race. Together with Sebu we worked really good for the whole group and had some sprinting capabilities left at the end as well. And this race showed me how important a teammate really is in motivating you through the downs in your race.

Royal Cycling

Royal Cycling

I also participated in Vuelta Vantaa, Eteläkärjen ajot and Myllyn pyöräily. All for the first time. Probably they will be in my calendar for 2014 as well. The greatest thing about the races this year was that I was able to participate them with my teammates, Sebu and Klaus. It really is one of the best things you can experience, race together!

Some more summer

Some more summer

I was not able to participate in the event that once again was planned to be the main event of the year, Tour de Helsinki. In many of the races I had some minor issues with my knees and my stomach, I hope this is something I can get rid of for the year 2014. Instead of the TdH, I spent a week in Italy, cycling in really beautiful landscapes and also managed to climb up Monte Amiata. Superb ride. I will recap that week for you at some point.

Evening ride in Italy

Evening ride in Italy

At the end of the year I was ill for a long period and really had to stay off the bike for 1,5 months, much more than I would have wanted to. But I was able to complete the Rapha Festive 500 challenge, a new thing for me. And gosh, that was hard for these really untrained legs! I was supported by Huntteri for this challenge, and was able to buy a new Felt F65X for this purpose. A cyclocross bike also means I will be able to track more hours on the bike on the off season, and hopefully I will feel this in summer 2014!

I really have some high hopes for the road cycling season 2014, and I'm sure I will make some great progress together with the support I have!

Some fun facts to compare year 2013 with the previous 2012.

Year 2012 2013 comparison

  • + 72 more rides
  • + 2700 more kilometers ridden
  • + 130 hours more training
  • - 15 bpm average heartrate
  • + 60 000 more calories burned

 

Thanks for reading and following, I hope you'll stick with me for another great year!

 

 

Great days are made of cycling

Today I took the first pedal strokes in a couple of weeks. It felt almost like the first outdoor ride after the loooong winter indoor training season. Today was sunny, warm, a great day for cycling. Even though the ride was not longer than a couple of hours, I felt I was back doing the thing I really want to do. Great days are made of cycling and good espresso. Thank God and Italy for both!

It's all in this picture.. (picture taken from kerdni.tumblr.com)

Giro d'Italia 2012

 

The spring classics are over and now it's time for the first real grand tour of 2012! The Giro d'Italia will be ridden for the 95th time, and hopefully we'll see a great Giro without accidents and a even battle for the Pink! Giro d'Italia is the main event for most italian riders, and is especially important for the italian teams. The biggest names battling for the win this year are Roman Kreuziger (Astana), Ivan Basso (Liquigas), Michele Scarponi (Lampre-ISD) and Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha).

This year the Giro d'Italia will begin in Herning, Denmark. The first stage is a time trial and the two following stages are flat stages also taking place in Denmark. 

The Giro d'Italia 2012 route (click to open detailed stage information)

 

The route will cover 3503,0 km with an average stage lenght of 166,9km between May 5th-27th 2012. 

The Giro d'Italia will gather a lot of people along the streets of Italy to watch one of the most prestigious sport events in the world. If you're not in Italy, there will be live video coverage from all the stages on several channels. If you don't have access to Eurosport, you can always use the Gazzetta TV or check other live streams from Steephill.tv.

The official promo video for Giro d'italia 2012 

 

 

 

Photo taken from www.cyclingtips.com.au

I hope you all enjoy the Giro d'Italia 2012!

 


Turning the lights on

Took the coldest ride this year just yesterday. 90km in +7 degrees and some rainshowers made the ride feel really cold, and at some point it felt like the legs were dispatched from my body. Also the darkness falls pretty quickly, already at 7pm it is dark, just a few months ago the sun didn't set before 11pm. But still, I guess this wins sitting on a trainer inside. So keeping in mind one needs to sit and suffer inside the whole long finnish winter, maybe the cold weather isn't that bad after all...

 

click to open GarminConnect

dirty job

 

The forecast tells me the temperatures will drop below 0 degrees celcius this weekend (during nighttime). Let's hope it won't snow!

And just to rub it in my face, the weather for Ancona, or probably anywhere in Italy...

 

Have a good one!

Cervelo BTP: Milan-San Remo 2011

The second episode of the awesome documentary, Beyond The Peloton (season 3) Milan - San Remo again points out that cycling is so much more than just riding a bike. Even if you're not thrilled by cycling, watch this documentary about what happens beyond the peloton, you might find yourself liking it!

 

Tasty Tuesday

Instead of working and studying we decided to do some coffee tasting in the city of Turku. There are quite a few coffee places, but only a few with proper espresso. Most of the places serve the filtered normal coffee or espresso that's not espresso. So we decided to check out some of the places that actually offer some real espresso.

La Caffetiera is a nice small cafeteria that also offers lunch. The place is located at Kupittaa, Turku. It's nice and cosy, but it is only open between 10.30-15.00, which is a pity because they have some nice espresso that would be nice to grab before lectures. The coffee they use is Caffè Manuel which has a nice soft taste, that would probably also be quite gentle as a doppio. I would probably rate it with 8.0/10.0 points. Also the staff is really nice.

 

The second place that also has a really nice atmosphere is Cafè Art located close to the aura river. During summer they also have tables outside, which is great because of the location. The barista at Cafè Art is also one of the best in Finland. They use their own blends in the coffee. The taste is somewhat bitter (especially the last sip), but nonetheless it is pretty good. Probably around 7.0/10.0. If you want to have Cappuccino, you will surely get a nice piece of art made by the barista. 

 

 

The third place we visited was Cafè Sirius located at the main library in Turku. The place is owned by real Italians and is pretty awesome. The place might not look like an original Italian cafeteria, but the food is good and the coffee is really nice too. The coffee used here is Caffè Mokambo, and is probably the best coffee in of the ones we tried, getting 8.5/10.0. It is a bit stronger than the Caffè Manuel, but not as bitter as the one served in Cafè Art. Leaves a nice taste afterwards. 

 

 

The last place we visited was Tintå located close to the aura river. It is a really cosy place with neat wine lists and good food, probably one of the most popular places in Turku at the moment. They also serve good coffee, even though it is not as good as the other ones mentioned. They use Cafè Moak, which is good, but is a little too thin to the taste. It might be because of the fact that they seemed to use capsules in the machine. The overall rating would be around 7.0/10.0. 

 

And of course there are more places to get good coffee from in Turku, but I still haven't been to a place that would offer as good coffee as the cafeterias in Italy have. Maybe its about the fact that you are in Italy that makes it. But then again, maybe the experience is a big part of your espresso...

 

Cafè Roma, Ancona, Italy

 

And of course, what would a tasty tuesday be without checking out a local bike store and some rims....