It was supposed to be a big ride day today. A BIG ride, out miles on the 29er. Yet again it didn't happen. Tired, lethargic, lacking motivation and drive. Lacking everything I need right now to be training properly for Strathpuffer. There is no excuse, I am on leave, I have the kit, everything is ready, except me. Instead we headed for the local woods to ride in the new trail.
However, messing about in the woods and on wee wall drops mustn't be underestimated for confidence and smiles. Who cares about getting the training miles in when the sun is finally out?
The new trail runs well, especially after Steve took one look at the first turn, decided an off-camber high line was the only way to go, and then rode it in a treat. He was right of course, it is 'the line', and the corner has now started to berm up and carry speed.
It was pleasing to eventually nail a drop off a tree stump. There may have been one or two refusals, ha! It's just a wee little thing, but scary as hell with a blind, rooty run-in, slippy wet branches to create the take-off (why do boys not think that kind of stuff is a front-wheel-wash-out waiting to happen?) and a landing on slippy clay. Head games, all head games. It'll be nice little sender with a bit of shovel work and some dry weather to harden up the clay.
By the end of the day I realised I'm not going to come into Strathpuffer 100% fit and ready, I am so far off the fitness I had in October I will be unable to regain it by the 23rd. My time has run out to claw it back significantly. But this realisation has been such a blessing. I don't think I care any more, I benefited earlier in the year with the training and have really enjoyed the time I have spent on the bike doing so. I may as well head to Scotland at the end of January and enjoy it for what it is. Which may be a few laps and a lot of drinking of tea in between. That sounds like fun to me!