Zwift now, win later! Matt Hayman’s journey to 2016 Paris Roubaix victory.

Last year Orica pro Matt Hayman famously hammered his way to an incredible victory at Paris-Roubaix. Only months beforehand he broke his arm in a crash while racing Omloop Het Nieuwsblad. Not content with just recovering, he set his sights on a bigger goal using Zwift as a major training tool. As we all know now this ultimately paid off with the biggest win of his career! Make a coffee, sit down and soak it all up:

#ZwiftEffect

More Meat Mondays?

If there can be such a “thing” as Meat Free Monday to appease the vegans and vegetarians, then I propose we can also have More Meat Monday! So on my all new #moremeatmonday us real humans can pile our plates high with the good stuff – you know you deserve that steak.

Surrey Sportive 2015 by SussexSportPhotography.com 08:29:35But you HAVE to earn it of course. This ain’t no Macca’s drive-thu Quarter Pounder Fatty McFatface value meal jobbie. No sir, More Meat Monday is for those who know how to hammer and sweat!

Grab some buddies, head out and smash the local chain gang (or hit the weights, play some ball or whatever badass activity you prefer) then fire up the BBQ and throw on some REAL meat! Add a few steaks, beef burgers, sausages, chicken wings, a rack of ribs, etc and chow down on that deliciously flame grilled muscle rebuilding animal protein goodness.

Get on board, you know it makes sense. :-) Say it loud! More Meat Monday!

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Don’t succumb to being a kale munching tofu touting salad bar nancy. Put down that wheatgrass infused spinach and soy smoothie. Be alpha, be awesome, be top of the damn food chain! Be a meat eating machine. Ain’t no mofo gonna mess with you because you’re not somebody’s prey! After all, vegans taste like bacon!

trexT-Rex would high five you for being so awesome, but he’s extinct (and has really small arms).

Once you’re done asserting your awesomeness congratulate yourself for working hard, exercising harder and fuelling your recovery the badass way because you sir or madam, are the real deal.

#moremeatmonday

A few dates for your diary

This month we’ve got the Tour Down Under to look forward to – a bit of early season sunny racing for the pros – then there’s a bit of a lull until the Spring Classics (some of my favourite races) kick off in March. In preparation, I did a very Flandrian style 100km ride this morning through the lashing wind and rain! #keepcycling

2016 UCI World Tour Dates

January 19 to January 24 – Santos Tour Down Under, Australia
March 6 to March 13 – Paris-Nice, France
March 9 to March 15 – Tirreno-Adriatico, Italy
March 19 – Milan-San Remo, Italy
March 21 to March 27 – Volta Ciclista a Catalunya, Spain
March 25 – E3 Harelbeke, Belgium
March 27 – Gent-Wevelgem, Belgium
April 3 – Tour of Flanders, Belgium
April 4 to April 9 – Vuelta Ciclista a Pais Vasco (Tour of the Basque Country), Spain
April 10 – Paris-Roubaix, France
April 17 – Amstel Gold Race, Netherlands
April 20 – La Fleche Wallonne, Belgium
April 24 – Liege-Bastogne-Liege, Belgium
April 26 to May 1 – Tour de Romandie, Switzerland
May 6 to May 29 – Giro d’Italia, Italy
June 5 to June 12 – Criterium du Dauphine, France
June 11 to June 19 – Tour de Suisse, Switzerland
July 2 to July 24 – Tour de France, France
July 12 to July 18 – Tour of Poland, Poland
July 30 – Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian, Spain
August 20 to September 11 – Vuelta a Espana, Spain
August 21 – Cyclassics Hamburg, Germany
August 28 – Bretagne Classic Ouest-France, France
September 9 – GP Cycliste de Quebec, Canada
September 11 – GP Cycliste de Montreal, Canada
September 19 to September 25 – Eneco Tour, Netherlands
October 1 – Il Lombardia, Italy

Almost Famous

Last Sunday a film crew from ITV’s The Cycle Show accompanied us on the regular first of the month club ride to Windsor. They were filming a piece on how accessible it is to join a club and how not all clubs are intimidating. We are a club that caters for all abilities and isn’t just full of svelte Lycra-clad racing snakes. Being very social and inclusive is an ethos at the heart of our club and one we strive to maintain.

Ex-pro cyclist and pocket rocket Rebecca Charlton accompanied the “social group” on their shorter ride to a local cafe, before shooting off to Windsor to join us faster lot for the ride home. I’d volunteered to lead a fast-ish group that morning so was chosen to be wired up and interviewed by Rebecca on the return journey! Here’s me getting mic’d up by the sound guy in Windsor:

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Rebecca and I rode on the front of the group and had a conversation about the club’s different levels and friendly attitude while the cameraman filmed from the back of a motorbike. There was also a quick interview afterwards back in Woking to finish off the piece. I’m totally not checking out her impressive track cyclist’s thighs I promise:

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It was such an enjoyable ride with her in the bunch and she was a really good sport, having a laugh alongside all of us guys. It was also a surreal experience having a proper TV camera motorbike following the club ride just like on a pro tour. I even got to fly off the front of the group and draft inches behind it at one point! I could get used to that!

Hopefully the piece will air in a couple of weeks. #almostfamous

Camp Heartbreak: Pro Women’s Cycling

Ever wondered what it takes to turn professional? Or what testing protocols are used to select the cream of the crop? Well if you’ve got a spare half hour grab yourself a coffee, sit down and watch this documentary:

It’s a behind the scenes look at the Australian Women’s Development Team selection camp. It’s a nine day cycling boot camp designed to test the women to their limits and beyond, with only the toughest and most resilient surviving the selection process. It’s a controversial method that has drawn a lot of criticism, possibly not the best way to select an elite group of female cyclists but it seems to work for the Aussies.

Would you survive?

Talking women’s pro cycling, it’s the start of the Giro Rosa tomorrow – the women’s equivalent of the Giro d’Italia grand tour. Forget the Tour de France for a moment, we’re in for ten days of tough and exciting racing from the ferocious women first!

2015 Women’s Tour of Britain

This morning I rode out to see the Women’s Tour of Britain. Today’s final Stage 5 started in Marlow town centre, before heading into the Chiltern Hills and finishing with a fast descent into Hemel Hempstead.

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Because of the road closures I chose to take a clockwise route out towards Henley and up into the hills around Fingest, where they were due to pass after the initial climb of the race. I managed to get a little bit of footage on my GoPro as they rode through.

Unfortunately Joanna Rowsell and Lizzie Armistead had both retired from the race earlier in the week (Armistead from her horrendous finish line celebration crash after winning Stage 1 of the Tour).

There hasn’t been much publicity surrounding this race, which is a real shame as I believe it should attract the same attention as the men’s race in September. The women are all phenomenal athletes and don’t get the media coverage or recognition that they truly deserve.