It was a sweaty morning down at Virgin Active, Aldersgate, as the Olympic gold medallist put us through our paces
Just three weeks until the RideLondon 100 cycle sportive, and time to up the pace with a spinning class to add some speed to my legs. And who better to lead the class than London Olympics gold medal track cyclist Laura Trott OBE?
As we all spun, in the swanky new Virgin Active, Aldersgate, at London's Barbican (totally gorgeous changing rooms btw), Laura shared a few training tips:
:: always look ahead, never down. Your legs aren't going anywhere but round!
:: on a descent, always be aware of what's coming next - free-wheeling is great after a climb but watch out for the corners
:: when you're on the bike, concenttrate on keeping as much weight as possible on your legs, not your arms. That's how you power through the miles
:: in training, cycle as hard as you can for six second intervals, with a few minutes break between each rep. This high intentsity interval training really helps build your strength.
Laura is an ambassador for the Prudential RideLondon event, and will be competing in the Grand Prix race that circles St James Park on Saturday August 3, 2013, srtarting at 5pm. 'I haven't decided yet whether I'll ride the 100-mile course too,' she told me.
Hasn't decided yet? But still might cycle it? After I've spent nine weeks or so training specifically for it? Chapeau, Laura!
The double Olympic champion is hugely enthusiastic about getting more women on their bikes - and thinks that better clothing is key to that goal.
'I think a lot of women feel uncomfortable wearing tight Lycra - my mum used to feel embarrassed about cycling for that reason. But there are clothes you can wear that aren't covered in logos that look really hgood and are also technical - the adidas range is really cool.'
Check out our pick of cool cycling clothing
Laura is also a big supporter of the campaign for more professional cycling events for women, as well as amateur events like RideLondon. 'I hope it encourages more people to get on their bikes and start cycling,' she says.
But adding a female version of the Tour de France to take place over the same distance at the same time is not the answer. Laura says, 'There are only two or three women in the world who could physically acccomplish that. I definitely think there should be a Tour for women, but it should be shorter and take place separately. Otherwise only the big race teams would be able to take part.
'More importantly, it would be good to get the women's races that already exist televised. And maybe some of the existing events could be extended.'
I'm training for the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey100 cycle event
Read my previous blog entry: My worst ever ride
Laura Trott is an ambassador for Prudential RideLondon, a two-day festival of cycling on August 3 & 4, 2013. Visit www.PrudentialRideLondon.com
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