stockholm

Working on my February legs

It has been a pretty busy week. It began with easy training, a business trip to Stockholm and then rounding up with an FTP test, Winter Olympic Games start and beginning of the Tour of Qatar. 

Last Sunday I took a spin outside, probably the hardest outdoor workout this winter. It had been snowing a lot and since the temperature was around zero degrees, it was hard to keep the bike straight. In the worst places, uphill with loads of loose snow my speed was around 5 km/h and my heartbeat was around 180 bpm. With every pedal-stroke the rear wheel just kept spinning and the bike was wildly sliding from side to side. And that ride was supposed to be an easy aerobic day...

On Monday I took an easy recovery spin, and then I had to rest for two days because of a trip to Stockholm.

Morning glory

A must pay visit to Bianchi Café&Cycles

Stockholm by night

Back in Turku

And it was time for my favorite pastry, Runebergstårta!

On Friday I had the second FTP test for this year. I was not too confident going into the training. My goal was to raise the FTP value with at least 10 watts, and honestly this time the test felt much harder than before. Having given it my all, I actually ended up with +14 watts, a huge surprise. Having lost 2 kg's weight this year, I actually already nailed my off season W/kg record, which feels good having trained less than I would have wanted to. 

On Friday the Winter Olympic Games also finally begun, the Olympics are always a spectacle I love to watch. After the opening ceremony I rewarded myself with Friday-Sauna.

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On Sunday the Tour of Qatar started, and what a start. Great breakaway effort by IAM Cycling Team once again, and I'm really excited to see what the team will be able to show during this tour!

Watching Tour of Qatar while training

On Sunday we also saw Enni Rukajärvi take the first Finnish medal in Women's Slopestyle. Great silver medal, hopefully one of many to come. 

Next week I really need to improve my training. Even if I had a couple of weeks with too few hours, I'm glad to see I'm improving and also glad I've been able to reduce my weight without losing muscles. The goal is to still lose some 5 kg's before summer.

Sunday breakfast

A month or so and we are out on our road-bikes!?

Winterclassics

Finland, being cold and dark is not always the best place for cycling. Instead we have to organize other activities, such as ice hockey. Last Saturday, 4th of February the reigning champions (HIFK) in the finnish top hockey league, SM-Liiga organized a great outdoor event, Talviklassikko (finnish equivalent for the NHL Winter Classic). Despite cold weather (-17 degrees celcius), the Helsinki Olympic Stadium gathered around 30 000 fans to watch this game between the two hockey teams from Helsinki. 

The weather was mostly good

We even got some snowBut the crowd didn't care

Simultaneously, there was a cycling event in Helsinki, the Winter Tweed Run -Helsinki. It was, as the Talviklassikko organized for the second time in Helsinki. This event gathers people with classic vintage bikes and Tweed clothes. This awesome event was joined by a great photographer, Krista Keltanen, who shared some really neat pictures from the ride! Check out her blog here!

Picture from kristakeltanenblog.comPicture from kristakeltanenblog.comPicture from kristakeltanenblog.com

Great to see these kind of events taking place even in Finland!

Here's a video from the same event in Stockholm in 2011

Tweed Run Stockholm 2011 from Kristoffer Hilmersson on Vimeo.

 

 

Ciao!

Season 2012 taking shape

So we've seen the pro-tour begin, and the first big event Tour Down Under finish with a great start for the new team, Green Edge. The former Team Sky rider Simon Gerrans took the overall win but we also saw great sprints by the german sprinter André Greipel.

Simon Gerrans (overall winner) – Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sprint ) – Jan Bakelants (most aggressive) – Rohan Dennis(KOM). Photo Cor Vos (cyclingtips.com.au)

I also enrolled to what will be the first cycling event for me in 2012, Giro d'Espoo that will take place the 27th of May 2012. A 111km long race along roads in the capital region will hopefully be ridden in good weather conditions. Check out the map here.

Click to read more about the race

I spent my new year in Stockholm and during some hanging-around we went to this awesome cycling café, Bianchi Café & Cycles. The coffee was really good and they even had the stuff I love, Cornetto con Crema. Having good coffee and being surrounded by bikes and likeminded people must be pretty close to heaven for any cyclist. I recommend you all to go there if you ever go to Stockholm. 

 

Both MTBs and Roadbikes were represented

Cornetto, Coffee and Bikes = Heaven

You could easily spend loads of money here, all bikes were for sale (new)

Probably the most beautiful bike I've ever seen, Bianchi Oltre Nero (~10 000€), click to read more about the bikeEven if you wouldn't be a Bianchi guy, this place is really worth a visit. At the same time I'm sorry that we don't have anything similar here in Finland.

 

Spring is here any day now... right?!