Why early bird rides are so rewarding

On weekdays we usually spend 8+ hours in the office before we can think of going for a ride – or maybe not? What about training before work? For some people unthinkable but I have never had trouble getting up early.  During the last couple of weeks I have managed to get in early bird trainings of about 3hours in the morning before work at least once a week. How did I manage?



Preparations,

When planning an early bird there is a couple of rules:

  • Prepare the evening before: Nothing more annoying than looking for your bib shorts or having to add some air to your tyres. It’s time consuming and you might wake up the others members of your household.
  • Plan the route in advance and put it on your Garmin or whatever device: I usually have a time plan according to my office schedule. I do not want to get lost and arrive late at the office.
  • Get breakfast immediatly after standing up: My tours start around 5 or 5.30 in the morning. I usually get up half an hour earlier to get ready. I take a bar and a banana for breakfast before changing and other morning routines such as toothbrushing.
  • Take bars/gels: I prefer not to get hungry and then empty the bakery next to my office.
  • Get up without alarm clock: I usually set an alarm clock but if I really sleep until buzzing it’s a sign I am rather tired and will probably do better to just stay in bed.
  • Go to bed early – see previous rule
  • Take a light – for safety reasons a backlight is absolutely necessary, when going in May or September also a frontlight might be required.

…the ride…

My early birds start at home and I also use them to commute to office. Luckily my employer provides showers. In that case I have to make sure I have suitable working clothes (and shoes, and a towel etc.) already at my workplace as I hate to ride with a backpack.

I try to start around sunrise and I love to see when nature awakes:

On early birds I start slowly to give my boday some time to really wake up – that can be hard in a group ride, but usually it works out. After half an hour or so I am fully awake and can also take some higher intensity. It happens quite often that I really get a flow of cycling along without much looking at powermeter or heart rate.

and the results….

I do some cool down the last 20 minutes in order not to arrive completely wasted. I buy a second brekafast on my way to office, have a shower and then it’s coffee&croissant. 😍 A great feeling after 3 hour in fresh air whereas most of your colleagues just had the commute in the metro. As a result I stay more focused in work and relaxed in meetings. I might get a bit more tired after lunch than usual but thats worth it.
Last but not least, early bird rides help you to avoid the heat of summer afternoons. Instead of riding it’s pool time or a cool beer with friends. 😎

dav

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