Setting some personal goals for 2019 - share yours!



Hi Andrea- Thank you for being you and sharing the rough road you had to endure this year. I am very sorry about your miscarriages. They are huge losses and it does take time to heal physically, emotionally and spiritually.
You have had other physical setbacks and thank you for sharing the disappointment that has gone along with them. From my own experiences, I have become a much more compassionate healthcare clinician and person due to my own struggles and loss.
I too, have had to change my goals due to health issues, but what I have found is - my goals have actually become more balanced! We all should treat each day we can get outside and walk, run, swim and cycle as an awesome gift! The most important thing is to enjoy it! We are not less of a cyclist or runner or swimmer because we are slower or can’t go as long as others. Exercise and working out is less about the measurements, and more about the journey.



So sorry to hear about the full extent of your health challenges in 2018 including the miscarriages. I can totally understand being afraid to make big goals for 2019. Thanks for sharing about this. So much healing to do both physically and mentally. Be kind and patient with yourself. You are a strong, determined woman and will find balance again. Big hugs :hugs::heart:


Hi Andrea
Very brave to tell your story about 2018,hope you smash 2019 in every way, and enjoy the riding and running with a smile.



Thank you for the thoughtful and honest post. It’s always good to reflect on the past year and think about the coming one. So many things we can learn as we prepare to take our next steps forward.

My 2018 was sidelined with a serious shoulder injury. It’s slowly healing and ultimately is forcing me to work on my strength and flexibility. So important as we age!

My tentative plans for the year are to begin with a bike focus for an April gravel race and then shift to a run focus for most of the year. I’m hoping to complete my first full marathon in the late summer or early fall. I plan to continue to run and bike through the year. Easy running until April and then add in intensity on the run beginning in late April. I’m working on regular yoga classes and swimming as well.

On top of this I plan to lose some pounds hoping to improve my running speed and allowing my body to handle the miles and intensity in the summer.


Michelle that’s awesome. It’s a powerful step to speak out your goals for all to hear. Very strong commitment vibes sent your way. I also spent almost of 2018 indoors, about 4100 of 4600 miles to be exact, due to my crash in June. Can’t wait to be outside in 2019 but mentally not solid as the pace line and downhills remind me too much of that event—— anyhow —- I’m working to hit my 100+ mi / 10,000 vft ride goal this year, set for Vermont Gran Fondo in June. I’ll be signing on for another Endualnce Labs program after all the Zwift GF events end later this month. Best of luck to you!


@cullenac I am sorry to read about your miscarriages and challenges. Thanks for sharing something so personal. Your inspiration and comments in 2018 helped me to fly. I know you will fly again. Being able to exercise is a journey that comes in all kinds of shapes and forms.


Its really nice to hear that. This was the idea behind the forum. We wanted to give people a safe place to discuss cycling / fitness / triathlon where they did not need to worry about trolls and people calling you names for asking seemingly simple questions. All the FB groups seem to bring out the worst in people. We have no tolerance for that here.


I am really sorry to hear about those losses, Andrea. I can’t say I can completely understand your grief—I’ve experienced those losses more than I care to remember, but it wasn’t my body; it was so much harder for my wife. Time to heal I suppose. Take care of yourself. Your courage will surely help you heal.


Tomorrow I plan to head out on my first club ride of the year :grin: it’ll (hopefully) be a gentle 50 miles with a mid-ride coffee stop in Windsor which might give the opportunity for some pics of the castle :+1: My only concern is that today I decided to try something new - I took part in a Touch rugby session :rugby_football:… it was great fun but now my legs and lower back are paying the price, I hadn’t realised the difference in muscle usage but am sure my flutes and hamstrings will benefit from all the running backwards :grin:


Hahahahaaha! Sorry, I didn’t mean to laugh at you that hard, but I am well-versed in this kind of discomfort. Welcome to the I Still Think I Can Do What I Did When I Was 22 But My Body Is Telling Me That I Nowhere Near Capable of That Kind of Craziness Club. I visit the clubhouse a couple of times a year. It’s never pretty, and it just gets worse. Epsom salt baths are a good remedy.


ok this gave me a chuckle; gluten for punishment!! and inspiring for courage to try a new sport!


Hi all:

Goals. Kind scary but really the only way I know to hold myself accountable. here goes:

  1. Stay healthy - probably the hardest thing for me as I have been injury prone the last few years.
  2. Increase run mileage responsibly. That means for me using the treadmill to build volume at a controlled pace.
  3. Cycle regularly with a plan. Goal is improve cycling fitness to allow me to competitive in gravel rides.
  4. Run a half marathon and tackle my first full marathon.


Late to the thread so a couple of comments

You’re so negative @Coach_Ian, it’s all about smashing and breaking things.

@dfriestedt this doesn’t include @Coach_Ian does it. We can still be mean to him and call him names?

My goals will be, hopefully, to try racing again and get upgraded after a bad first season(only 1 upgrade point and a crash that broke my bike as well as a lot of humbling beatings). I will need to replace the broken bike which is why this is a hopefully. Need to save up some funds. Damn kids and and their hobbies, like eating, are too expensive.

Also I want to lose weight through a sustained focus on healthy eating. I have a couple of goals based around different metrics, weight/waist/bf%.

Good luck in 2019 everyone


For the 2nd week in a row I’ve joined my local club ride and am giving myself kudos for this. However, I’m also now mentally beating myself up as I had to abort the ride - I stepped up to the intermediate group and just found the pace too much; last weeks group ride at 14mph which was too slow for me but this weeks group were pushing 18/19mph and that was too fast… beating myself up for quitting


Don’t beat yourself up too much. That’s how it works when you move up. It takes a few weeks to adjust to the new pace and the different group dynamics. It happens at all levels. If you ever get the chance to talk to someone who moved from a domestic circuit to the Pro Tour, they will tell you that the first season is generally about getting your teeth kicked in at every race and trying not to be picked up by the sweeper van. Just keep at it, and you will stay with them longer and longer each ride. My key piece of advice would be to spend as little time on the front as possible. If you pull through, make it a really short pull. As you get stronger and finish with the group, you can take longer pulls. The other riders will understand.



Further to @Coach_Ian’s comments, please consider the following:

  1. Is group riding a new experience for you? It takes time to learn to draft, conserve energy, and the overall dynamics of group riding. Similarly, if this is a new group to you- you will need to learn the dynamics, styles and behaviours of the riders.

  2. Group rides are fun, but very often turn into a hammer fest. Even if it doesn’t turn into that, there are always those in the group who are stronger and like to show off, do their thing, dictate the pace… go off the front and pull hard… which leads me to my next point

  3. Just because you are riding with a group, it does not mean that the group or pace is right for you. This is regardless of speed or strength of the riders. I am referring to how the group behaves in general- there could be a lot of surges going on, and that can make you tired fast.

  4. Testosterone effect. It is common for men to start rides at a hard pace 99% of the time. It’s not that they are mean or anything, just seems really common. Sit in the middle to the back of the pack for the first 20-30 minutes of the ride.

  5. Group rides are for fun and not for training. The only training you get from group rides is handling skills and pack riding skills.

With all that in mind, don’t see riding in the faster group as a testament to your strength. It is more about skills than strength. Take shorter pulls like @Coach_Ian said, or say you will skip on the rotation- people usually don’t mind that.

You will get the hang of it with time.

Confession: I don’t like group riding, because I don’t like other people setting up the pace for me (unless it’s a women-only ride, in which case it is much more compatible). And that’s OK (@dfriestedt gives me grief for it, but my coach doesn’t)… I have to force myself to do them from time to time just to get the skills of riding in a pack.


@Michelle I feel your pain. If it helps in any way, everyone goes through what you described. You should feel good about stepping up to the next level. That takes a lot of courage and just taking the step is a win in my book.

Here are some “tips” for faster rides:

  1. Riding at the back of the group is HARD. You get whipsawed the most.
  2. You can politely ask someone to help you stay with the group. Stronger rider could see this as an opportunity to help someone new and they can get a good workout doing it. I’ve done this in the past. I basically absorb the surges for the people behind me and even out the ride for them.
  3. Learn the course in advance. You need to know in advance where is gets tough (or uphill) so you can prepare.
  4. Never get on the front. If you accidentally find yourself there, rotate off gently spending no time on the front.
  5. Don’t ride in front of the strongest rider. When they hit the front and you rotate off, the pace can pick up a lot making it difficult to get back onto the group.
  6. Make sure you are properly hydrated and carbs are toped up.

I can’t tell you how many times I dropped myself and just got dropped before I got strong enough to hang with strong groups. It takes lots of practice. Keep with it!!!



The discussion about group rides and listening to the Coaches Corner relived some of my group rides.

I tried a few times to ride with a brisk pace (16-18 mph on flats) group and decided the group was too aggressive for me. I backed down to moderate pace (14-16 mph on the flats). Moderate pace has about 50/50 women and men. Brisk is more men.

In 2013 I started leading group rides. Even though I took a ride instructors course, my real learning was leading rides, asking the riders for feedback, and evaluating the rides. The club rules have a leader stay at the front. The group does not rotate.

In 2017, I was leading a 25 mile moderate pace (14-16 mph on the flats) training ride where the majority of riders decided to pass me. Then, the sweep passed me as well. I was humiliated. So, I picked up the pace to brisk pace. I had a rider go down when he slid on gravel in a corner. A slower rider at the end of the ride complained I was going over pace. I learned a lot on that ride. I also accepted the fact I don’t enjoy volunteer leading 15-30 riders after a stressful work day in rush hour traffic on routes I do not know perfectly.

In 2018, I switched to lead or sweep steady (12-14 mph) training rides. I had better control of the group. Depending on the route, I gave the riders an option to sprint home the last few miles. Because I was not working hard, the training ride switched to become a social ride. And that was ok. I found I preferred doing the hard training rides/workouts indoors or outside on low traffic roads by myself.


Howdy all! My goals are to stay with our local group longer. Luckily my hubby and I are about equally paced and we ride IRL together. Also, we have cycling travel rides planned for Oregon and Tuscany, Italy and my goal is to finish at least the short option (oh, those hills :wink:) on the rides. Also, my husband wants to try to do the 100 mile ride at the Hotter’ Hell 100 (Wichita Falls, TX in August). I made it (somehow didn’t collapse) one year and he is looking to complete it. However, it will be very weather dependent (temp and wind). All the best to all y’all! - joan


Can I come with you to Tuscany @Joan? I am small and could probably fit in a large suitcase :grin: