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Literally and psychologically. Apart from a trip to the Tour de France, my riding in July has solely been commuting. After the ride to see the Tour (which I’m late in documenting), I took it easy for a week to let the legs and sunburn recover. To motivate myself, I’ve double my previous 35KM weekly Strava goal, and so far I’m doing OK. With a daily commute of 21KM, a 70KM weekly goal is pretty well paced. It pushes me to commute as often as possible, and requires dedication to hit: 3 days a week, and a ride at the weekend; or at least 4 days riding in.

One side effect of this is that I’ve unsurprisingly been pretty tired. I’ve not ridden out at the weekends for some time, but as my fitness improves it won’t be too long before the goal goes up again: 100KM. The psychological headwinds overcoming the fatigue are tough, but there to be conquered. My average speed is up, both for rolling-four-weeks and in general when I get a clear run into the office. I’ve got a few routes starred in Strava for research and planning for 2016, and watching the times tumble as the average speed rises even just 0.2KM/H has proven to be very gratifying.

On the road itself I’ve endured some interesting headwinds this, devoid of rain at least - one day’s commute home required facing into a 23MPH headwind. In hindsight, a routing inland might have been a good idea. But it felt cathartic, perhaps even therapeutic, to take the harder route: into the full-force of the wind, drop the gears; build up some momentum and gradually find a gear and cadence that works; jump forward as the wind drops for a second, only to be back to square one as the wind becomes too much. Despite the hard grind along the seafront (and a spirited gentle climb home), it felt good.