Adam Lewis and three other riders are keeping rider journals for The British Continental this season. Adam has joined the Dutch UCI Continental team BEAT Cycling Club this season, an innovative team that markets itself as a professional cycling team based on a club. This is Adam’s first journal entry…
2019 is going to be a decisive year for me
A decisive year
Girona: home to many a professional cyclist. After being here for a month it’s not difficult to see why. Great area, quiet roads and various terrains to pick from. 2019 is going to be a decisive year for me and it’s for that reason I wanted to head out to a better climate to get the hard work done to put me in a good place, ready for the season. In the past, I have slogged it out through the depths of the British winter and succumbed to riding hours on the turbo. After doing it for year on year I finally cracked, so it is fair to say when the opportunity arose to come here I jumped at the chance.
I arrived in the second week of January and met up with a couple of my BEAT Cycling Club teammates, Piotr [Havik] and Nahom [Desale], where we would be staying in an apartment close to the centre of the old town. Before coming to Girona my winter had been a nice steady progression in terms of training, laying the foundations ready for the hard work to come. With plenty of Neo Pro Cycle Coaching efforts on the schedule, it was nice to have the company of teammates out on the road and also to train with them for the first time. I feel we learnt a lot about each other both on and off the bike so hopefully this will stand us in good stead heading into the season.
As far as how the training camp was structured, I was doing three-day blocks of training with two easier days to recover before going again and starting the next block. For me, I find this works quite well as I can really get stuck into some solid work before recovering and adapting, ready to go again. It was great to be in a different environment, allowing me to knuckle down and really focus on training and recovering, ready for my season goals.
One for the bucket list
When most people think of Girona they would most likely think of ‘Rocacorba’ or ‘Els Angels’. However, whilst I was there I rode out to the easternmost point of Spain, specifically the Cap de Creus. It is located just outside the town of Cadaqués, some 90 kilometres from Girona (a 180 kilometre round ride). It’s a long day in the saddle with some good climbing during the middle part of the route. I 100% recommended it as once you arrive you will see some stunning rock formations sculpted by the ocean and the Tramuntana [a wind that blows off the Pyrenees in much the same way the Mistral blows in France]. For a mid-ride refuel, there is a restaurant at the lighthouse with great coffee and cake to get you home. Probably the best ride I did during my stay in Girona, but make sure you do it on a calm day otherwise it will be a hard fight against the wind.
Early season opportunities
I should probably give you a little insight as to what I want to achieve this year. The team has a great provisional race programme lined up, some great races I can really get stuck into. At the age of 23 I feel now is the time for me to start gaining some results in UCI 1.1 and above races. Last year I experienced them for the first time and it was a completely different style to what I had been used to. Now I hope to use those experiences and turn them into results.
I am unsure of my race programme as of yet but in the early season, two races which stand out to me are the Volta Limburg Classic [UCI 1.1, 6 April] shortly followed by Circuit des Ardennes International [UCI 2.2, 12-14 April]. We have a strong March schedule which should set me up well for these races. Starting the season strong will be my main focus for now; early success brings confidence for the rest of the year.
For all the data geeks out there, here are some of my stats from January:
- Training Hours – 92hrs
- Kilometres ridden – 2,650km
- Elevation gain – 33,390m
- Calories burned – 36,323kcal
- Cakes consumed – 8
You can see all my rides on Strava here.
Be sure to stay tuned for the next update. I move back to Belgium month, where I’ll be picking up all my new team kit for the year and a team training camp is also on the cards.