2017-

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Time to look back and see the ups and downs of this year. What to learn from the sad and what to remember as good.

The big things seems to start with Racemile Showdown in the end of January, this year not so cold but really icy as seen on the picture above. My Sequoia came to it’s perfect use with 42mm studded tires:)

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A weekend with friends and a big Thank You to Hagen for arranging 😀

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Then came a spring with a not so fast Sequoia which didn’t seem to give me any extra leg muscles. Instead it became a dropping time on Le Peloton with a too low handlebar and I felt slow…

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It may have seen like many people on the picture here but my thoughts has been Le Peloton is loosing people to other things. Like Morningspins:

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Without finding the speed on my roadbike I found it on my superlight Epic ht mtb and cut my PR at Långa Billingeracet with around 20min 🙂

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The fastest bike I’ve ever had and super agile. Unfortunately it didn’t have an rear damper and I seem to have been older making my back hurt after like 40-50km Marathon racing. Felt fast uphill, it felt really good downhill singletracks but on on flat singletrack with roots and rocks it felt like I was standing still.

So I ate ice-cream instead:

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And I tried to ride with fast people, SUMO style:

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Manage to do a Randonneur with these great people in awesome pace 🙂

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And according to Strava the one I was riding most with in 2017 is Emil who’s super fast:

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A thing I didn’t think was I was going to do Vätternrundan once again. Riding around a boring lake on boring roads with stressed people. But Stefan convinced me to apply and what a team. Known and unknown people having fun going fast for almost 300km 😀

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I never thought I would do it at 7h27min, and remembering it as fun. Riding with Henrik, getting to know Glenn, seeing how simple everything seems for Calle and Fredrik. Everything together with Jukka and Karl keeping things together. And the biggest effort by Erik for making it all possible and making us have a calm knowing everything is in control and skipping the stress so many people got for Vätternrundan. Skoda Cycling Team is not just a team effort, it’s like being a pro with everyone trusting you 🙂

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The summer passed and the next big event came.

Race Across Skåne. Another friend like Hagen arranging a top notch event. Waking up in Malmö that day not feeling on top was a bit sad as I really longed for being in top shape that day. Got dropped sitting totally wrong in the crosswind pretty early, feeling like on a spring Le Peloton but at a 190km race instead of 40km training. Ending up with meeting my good friend Emil who saved the day. Cruised on this wheel feeling shit the rest of the route:

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We had a crash in a group and it started raining. Everything felt just bad so at the last stop I got an ice-cream…

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It’s always fun with an ice-cream, always 😀

The day after I felt worse, driving to my mum instead of doing an recovery spin with the rest. Got fever but manage to get good until our adventure trip. Me, Emil and Emile went to Norberg with gravelbikes and target to explore some new roads in the middle of nowhere. I felt slow after my illness but I love new roads and places. I found a straight fast road on a sunny day outside Norberg, or the road maybe found me…

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The end of the summer after a stupid crash. But the start of knowing I got so many kind friends always there to help out. So thankful for everyone making my recovery easier. I missed Rapha 12 Hills and many many kilometers of sunny cycling but it could have been worse.

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I got back on a bike outside 😀 Have been feeling slow all autumn but I’m riding and no matter of speed cycling is a beautiful sport. And with help from Specialized Nordic and Specialized Concept Store Stockholm I’m more motivated than ever. Got the dreambike which I’m hoping to ride everywhere, all the time and with a smile (when the salt is gone from the roads)

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Travelled to Girona for some sun and met some cool people:

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So 15437km later the year ends and I’m still not tired of cycling. The best way to explore our beautiful world and meet nice different people from all over the world.

For 2018 I want to go to new places, new countries. Want to enjoy every moment no matter if I ride in sunny Italy or just commuting to work a rainy grey day. Want to be a good friend. Want to watch some proper roadracing and maybe even meet Annemiek van Vleuten. Want to be an ambassador of our beautiful stylish sport without judging people. Because style is important 😀 IMG_20171229_083905_413

So welcome 2018 and good luck having more fun! Let’s enjoy every moment 🙂

Girona

Instead of being in Stockholm when the first snow came I managed to get what can be the last warm (Swedish thinking) week in Girona. Met Karim who went back to Stockholm the day after I arrived and my nice friend Therese. Got to talk to cool people like Aviv, Connie and Kati. And I got some beautiful rides in a landscape where you can get everything. Did ride some nice climbs but no steep ones, just flowy where I could get a good rhythm and which ended in a tricky tight descend. Not sure if the descends where hard or if just was a coward and slow… Anyway, riding awesome roads in a nice landscape when it’s how enough to take of arm- and kneewarmers after a while feels like a luxury. I think I will be back, missed a couple of great routes I heard. Here is some random pictures from my trip:

And my Diverge did work awesome for this, a good friend I want to do many trips with 🙂

Progressing

I never want to settle and be satisfied. I always want to be better in some way.

My comeback now is a lot about that. Keep on pushing my leg further and harder, make it work at least as good as before. Sometimes when you don’t feel any difference and just being home and alone it sucks. But when meeting friends and being out in the real life you understand what to push for and that the efforts you make are making a difference.

Being able to lift your foot. Being able to sit on a chair with 90° bent leg. Being able to change from two to one crutch. Being able to walk without crutches. Being able to get dressed without tools to help you. Being able to get on my Colnago and spin a bit on the trainer. Being able to go out, step on your daily, get that leg in and pedal away (happened yesterday). Being able to measure progress and see when angles like 95, 115 and 125 is every day getting closer to 143°.

This day was about progress too. Talking about the future and seeing the future from Specialized (2018). And be able to step on a real bike, with real cycling clothes, and after a few tries get the left foot in and be able to ride with friends. Never tried to push so hard and while being fully focused on moving my leg around it was a big step in my world 😀

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Extra fun to do it on the 2018 Specialized S-Works Tarmac with new Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 🙂

So keep looking forward no matter where you are in life. Make life better, and if you got a perfect life there is always someone else who needs help.

Race Across Skåne 2017

One of my 3 big goals this year was 2 days ago. Have never ridden as much as this year, haven’t been sick and my unsold bike was in top shape.

After friends already planned their trips and stays in Malmö I borrowed a car by a good friend and booked a hotel in Malmö. Drove down Friday evening after work as a start of my vacation.

Woke up in time Saturday morning with a bad feeling in my throat and body. Not sick but maybe a start of something. Would never spend so much energy and money and do a DNS so ate the bad breakfast and rolled in to Musette. Got a couple of bottles and met some nice friends I haven’t met since last year.

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Master out from Malmö with Patch and Emil in front. Easy pace and a couple of punctures on the 25km master. Then the attacks went from the gun. I attacked too to get in the first group and tried to wheelsuck. Unfortunately I was on the wrong side in the wind and while a group of people flew by in a wing on my left side I couldn’t keep up. Ended chasing for a while but didn’t have the legs. Felt like I rode fast on the first gravel section but got caught by some people including Emil and we rode together. It doesn’t matter which form I am in but I can always rely on this wheel:

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Ended up with being 5 riders riding together until the first stop. Me and Emil thought of changing group as we didn’t know the other 3. Was a bit late but got the smart thought of chasing the group of maybe 9 riders. 9 fast riders as we with full speed and forgetting things like 190km and threshold we didn’t get close enough… We gave up but I think they rode a bit wrong and they caught us a little bit later 😉

2nd group and manageable speed felt alright in the wet. Until a driver decided to turn left just in front of our group. 1st guy got hit by the car and we stopped. Just brused but so stupid by the driver who didn’t think clear at all. Happy it didn’t go worse then it did. After some time and phone calls there we rolled into Vitemölla and the lunch break:

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Was a bit cold so shared some heat:

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Then we cheated a bit and didn’t stay for an freezing hour but left when the first group left. I tried to ride smart with the first group for a bit, ended up taking a couple of turns but on a flat section they dropped me riding fast. Absolutely didn’t have the legs or mindset. Took a gravelroad the others skipped and ended up in the middle of 1st and 2nd group.

Stopped waiting and got riding with the 2nd group again. Felt alright and the rain didn’t bother me, wasn’t cold. After Klas took a long hard turn and I went to the front the group got split in pieces… Became 6 riders riding together after and when Ola and Klas decided to go down ravinen we became 4. Emil, Peter, me and a unknown guy skipped that tricky section and aimed to get back without mishaps and punctures. I was tired so didn’t do much work in front, just tried to hang on.

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Last stop in Blentarp and I was wet, tired and if I would have found a train I would have skipped the last part. Was said of not being better so skipped the serious part and ate an ice cream. Happy Moment 🙂

Then we rode some gravel and I got happy again, didn’t feel slowest and the long uphill may have been slow but felt like I was moving. Found some energy and was able to be in front a bit at the end. Finished it of with winning the ”sprint” in our little group too. Doing all I could to be positive.

Then the rain stopped, we rolled in to Malmö and Västra Hamnen and the rest became an epic story and a day to remember.

Map and stats: Strava

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I did it! Emil was saving me from not turning around in Önneköp without even knowing it. I said it before but you always need a friend to rely on, no matter.

Then I drove home and became sick for real…

Le Peloton #165

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Today I was motivated and wanted to hang on until the end, no dropping. Doped with my favorite Specialized S-Works Evade GC Skinsuit, Evade helmet and S-Works Sub6 shoes 😉

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Alone of my look, not so matched like Penton Cycling:

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But I survived up Östervik to Fisksätra and kept my leg in schack. Easy spinning and it was good to go for real. Could push 100% for the rest and got so happy I even got to cover some gaps and took quiet a few turns. 😀 I think I even was happier finishing with the group today than managed to hang on around Vättern with Skoda. This has been much so hard and thought a lot of my leg and why it doesn’t work perfect if I don’t warm up proper.

My 3rd best time on Le Peloton today too 😀

Map and stats: Strava

Happy breakfast at Le Mond afterwards in the sun and me and Johan found out we matching socks 😀 Gelatosocks:

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If you want to see how we rode, here is a video by Jesper:

Le Peloton #163

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Long time since last time, curious on if my leg worked with some power. Sumodressed:

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My left leg worked until around here:

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Thinking it can be the cold so tomorrow I will use kneewarmers. Dropped too early so rode easy, met up with Mark that had some problem and then we joined the 2nd group when they caught us in Ektorp. A bit messy but my legs felt okay in that tempo so no problem with covering gaps, take an extra turn or go around people that didn’t have the legs to go around. Felt pretty good to ride in that group 🙂

Map and stats: Strava

Ended with maybe this years longest breakfast outside Le Mond 🙂 Sun and great company makes the morning super after all.

pictures on me by Rille

Lida Loop

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Had a nice setup for todays race 🙂 Very relaxed before the start.

The start up a small skislope went very much under control and much easier compared to Långa Lugnet and Billingeracet. Then it was 9km with runningtracks on gravel, fast, fast and fast. Felt ok and think I had some more speed than before today 🙂 Not the fastest on the singletrack but did my best and first and 2nd loop went. In the end of the 2nd loop I was riding the startslope and turned left, onto some gravel and lost my bike… Took down some tape, got some wounds and messed up my mind.

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3rd loop felt same as for 2 years ago, just get in your mind and get through as fast as possible. Tired and hurt a bit from the crash.

Finished after 2h48min and it got me a 35th place in Men 30, 188 overall.

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Feeding by Patrik today, awesome 🙂

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And maybe I looked a bit fast a couple of times:

Pictures by Patrik, David, Happyride.se, Johan, Jaime and Rickard 😀

Thanks everyone for a great event

Map and stats: Strava

200km Brevet

I did my 3rd Randonneur ride today. First one was 1,5 year ago in the middle of the winter. A long long snowy day riding alone around Mälaren. 2nd was last year on my birthday when Sumo Cycling Club smashed a ride from Uppsala with an average of over 34km/h for 200km, but with a bit too long stops and sadly a crash.

Today was a classic ride which many of my friends have done before, Slottsrundan (castleloop) in Sörmland starting in Östertälje. I missed it last year but today on Sweden’s National Day which of course is sunny seemed perfect 🙂

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Got there with my Sumo club with El Gringo, The Joker and the The Dictator.

It all started in a very big group with like 30-40 riders and it was a bit too big. El Gringo thought of attacking and the Dictator wanted the same. Passing Vagnhärad it was an attack and some stopped, a bit messy but they tried to make the group smaller. Dropped a few but not so much. After the first stamp/castle and we turned right into tailwind it changed quiet a bit. El Gringo went up in the front and just smashed it, one line behind and not so many wanted to help out with the pace 😉 People got dropped and into Gnesta we where a fine little group. Stopped at Circle K for some water and a guy complained at the speed, hmm, nothing said about it.

Another group passed but they stopped for Pizza in Gnesta. We started riding again with mostly known people for me. Really fun. Mats got some attacks, a couple of signsprints and we lived life 😀

South of Mariefred where we turned to Åker Styckebruk the road got very undulating and while Sebastian was really strong on the climbs not everyone was.

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In Åker Styckebruk we lost the Dictatotor and El Gringo and the Joker stopped to wait for him. I continued to get some more help from the 1st group.

Ended up at Malsåker castle:

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Back over the water in Stallarholmen and stopped at a gas station.

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The other Sumos wasn’t so far behind so we met up. Johan was pretty tired so me and him waited while the group I rode with before went to finish the ride. Johan was still tired after the break so he rode alone from Mariefred. Just the SUMO group back together:

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El Gringo keeping the pace right, The Joker and me pushed the tempo a bit too high for the Dictator. Have to live up to my name (The Lightweight Lizard) on the climbs you know 😉

A nice pace straight back to Östertälje and the ride was over. me and the Joker celebrated like you should a sunny summer day 😉

Map and stats: Strava

The funny thing is today felt alright, I had no problems with going around (mostly) and take my turn. Compared to last autumn where I more or less just tried to hang on as I thought the pace was to high. Same speed today, more climbing and less good teamwork. Feels good 🙂

Some may think that you shouldn’t ride Brevet this fast but why not. Everyone in the final group today was happy about the speed I think, otherwise they should have dropped to another group 😉 And short stops makes it easier to get back on the bike 🙂

Långa Billingeracet

In some way this is my favorite XC Marathon race. It got great atmosphere, many friends, awesome climbs and some beautiful flowy trails. Went down to Skövde yesterday with my teammate John and Mattias to stay at my sister 🙂 1st class.

Not even 5min riding to the start this morning which was perfect but maybe not the warm-up you needed 😉

It all started with a asphaltclimb that went into the forest halfway and I tried to take it a bit easy. Here was also the first time I noticed my easiest gear 34-36 wasn’t working at all. 34-32 as easiest for the rest. Felt good in the beginning except I didn’t have to power on the flat gravelsections or the gearing. Tried to hang on some groups but dropped a bit, got back up when it was going uphill 😉

The trails in Öglunda was amazing and my bike felt really good. The Fox fork works like a dream and I really like the geometry of my bike (and weight). The gravelclimb up after Öglunda went really good with a good flow 🙂

Up on Billingen I got a new bottle from my sister and then it came a really long singletrack part, was a bit hard on my hardtail. Down on the other side on some gravelroads and some great green singletrack felt nice.

Then the longest part, the singletrack section including some crocodiletracks :p which takes a lot of energy without any rest. Started to feel my back and after 57km it started to hurt. Was riding slow (according to a friend I rode with for a while) and a lot of stretching so dropped from some groups.

Finally the end came, 2 climbs which went much better than I hoped for with my back. 8kg bike makes difference and on the first climb I rode with 34-28 gearing and it felt great passing a couple of riders too. A bit singletrack down and some asphalt before the last climb, Strupen. Knew how it was but didn’t remember it got steeper and steeper. 34-32 in the end and standing up trying to have grip and passed some more riders.

It all ended in a small spring with me and a guy riding in a different class so I let him win 😉

Finished 34th in my category and 127th overall. 3h31min so 19min better than my earlier record 😀 Really tired but satisfied.

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Here you can see who’s the fastest :p

And Mattias who never been riding so far rode 5min faster than me:

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Like Benny Andersson said, a hardtail wasn’t perfect for the course. But I couldn’t have asked for more fun on my Specialized Epic HT, really nice with a SWATbox too so I didn’t have to carry a spare tube and pump in my jersey:

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Always improvements to make but as this bike is what I want to have I have to make the improvements on my body instead 😉

Map and stats: Strava

Emil Lindgren and Jennie Stenerhag won!

XC and Sockdoping

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Started the day with riding mtb with some friends. Some fast and some technical trails and for the first time mostly hardtails 😉 Except John. Need to get better in finding some fast trails around here 🙂

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Ended with coffee and lunch at Le Mond.

Then I took a longer route home to find some small roads on gravel, and wood:

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Was a year since I rode down there last time and I got a couple of nice climbs too 🙂

Map and stats: Strava

Today I wore plain pink MB socks in wool. Sometimes it’s the simple that feels right and sometime not. Got a couple of new Gelatosocks so my collection is complete and I have a bigger problem choose socks for tomorrows Le Peloton and race:

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😀 Perfect for me as I really love Icecream, and cool cyclingsocks 🙂