Making the Most of the Late Autumn Sunshine

Post date: Oct 30, 2016 6:12:12 PM

(By Mark Monaghan - Sun. 30th October 2016)

Two groups of twelve set off on Sunday morning in what can only be described as ideal conditions. As per the training plan the route was to be of medium difficulty and to be ridden at steady pace with no man or woman to be left behind.

We quickly set into our rhythm as we rode towards Crooked wood where we did our first few hill efforts. The idea behind these efforts are to strengthen the legs by using big gears and low cadence. Everyone stuck to the task with ease and before long we were rolling along into Collinstown. From there we rode across the picturesque road to Castlepollard and then onto Finea and into Granard for a well earned coffee & tasty treats.

After the usual banter and laughs we saddled up and “dropped” into Abbeylara, as Thos Kiernan described it, and on to Coole where the dreaded puncture fairy struck again just as we were climbing into the village. Quickly mended we continued on to Multy and to everybody’s favourite Hill “Piggery Hill”, where again we used the big gear low cadence method to strengthen the legs. Time for home along the N4 into Mullingar with 90km on the legs.

I have to say, to a person in the group, we all rode fantastically well with everybody commenting on how much they enjoyed being able to spin along have chats & banter. The conditions were ideal for cycling with the fantastic autumnal colours an added bonus. Looking forward to next Sunday already.

Group A enjoying the beautiful late Autumn sunshine on Sunday's spin.

B Group

We decided to head north for Collinstown, through the Village of Fore and then onto Castlepollard for the well needed coffee break. With a quick rethink on the route home, we took a detour that brought us down a rolling country lane that afforded us stunning views of north Westmeath, and a good bit of climbing thrown in for good measure.

After a quick stop at Whitehall church, the group then headed for the Multy/Coole road, taking in more hills on the way. Turning for Multyfarnham , and with Piggery hill waiting for us, it was a case of grin and bear it as we approached this local leg burner.

We regrouped at the Covert, and headed back for home on the N4, turning for the old Longford road and at this stage even a slight rise in the road was becoming a bit of a struggle.

Like all good spins we arrived back in one group, with the sun shining, everyone chatting and a great sense of achievement that we did 75km on a tough route.