So it’s almost the end of winter and it’s time to get back onto two wheels for me.  The MitoQ K2 Road Cycle Classic is coming up on November 2nd and I’m heading to the start line, cue plenty of training, trying to play it smart with the balance of work, family and of course RoadCycling.  Here we go!

The winter has flown by, as it usually does here on this side of the computer.  It feels like just a few weeks ago that the Giro had captured our attention, blink and George was tearing up the mountains of the Tour, and now we’re on the cusp of September.  In the last five years of running this show this pattern keeps going.  Get to late-August, wonder where the time has gone, then charge on into an equally fast-paced New Zealand season.

We’re really looking forward to this season.  The opportunity to ride the MitoQ K2 is one we’re not passing up, and I love that in the middle of the mad rush of content-production that is the life of a sports journalist and editor; projects like Ed’s Vlog keep me actually doing the sport that I love.  So here we are, end of August, about to get back into it in the run up to the big lap of the Coromandel.

The winter has been a slow one for me fitness-wise.  It started well, with my new found hobby of kettlebell sport taking me to the North Island Championships in Auckland.  Knowing the challenges of making riding work with limited daylight hours, and in a busy time of the European season, I decided to try a more time-efficient fitness method.

Kettlebell sport is very enjoyable, a great way to build strength; and it’s an endurance sport that at competitive level lasts just 10 minutes as opposed to several hours on a bike.  I took to it very quickly and at North Island Championships took on two disciplines, with the Biathlon (a combination of the jerk and snatch techniques) and the One Arm Long Cycle on the cards.  Over three lifts I was stoked to come away with two national records; but it came at a price.

During the competition I felt something pop in my lower back and after getting checked out by my physio it turned out that I’d suffered a pinched nerve brought on by a prolapsed disc.  Cue a winter of frustrating recovery; which I’m still sort of in and only gradually returning to functioning fitness wise.  Interestingly running is an activity that I can do completely pain free so I’ve been taking advantage of it; keeping the cardio up and something in the legs ready for the day that riding returns.

In action at the North Island Kettlebell Championships back in June, photo Marion Wright/

It’ll be slow progress towards being prepared for the MitoQ K2, but I’m stoked to have the support of the Wattbike Pro at home that I can use and build up my strength and fitness comfortably as I work back to being road ready.  The physio did recommend utilising a stationary bike as I work on recovery and with the Wattbike being so adjustable and still able to give a good workout with its resistance options; it’s a match made in heaven not just for people unable to get daylight hours to ride, but for people working their way back from injury.

So this is me, the first in the training diary entries on the road to Thames.  The MitoQ K2 starts and finishes in Thames this year, tackling the climb of Kopu-Hikuai first (whoopee!) and then it’s onwards and upwards from there.  Head over to and get signed up for one of the K2, K1, Dirty K or Nicholas Browne Challenge course options and we’ll see you there!


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