training camps, spain & france

Season 2015 is just around the corner and the last weekend before nieuwsblad is coming up. I've had a great start of the year kicking it off with 10 days in Spain, where i got lots of sun, hours and smiles with Tilina. She really is a great friend to go on training camp with, there's no problem having either fun or perfect trainings in her company. So thanks girl for that!
After Spain I had 5 days in Sweden where I had absolutly no time over. 3 days of work + training and a weekend, also filled with training and seeing friends and family.
Than it was time to see my team mates down in France again. How I have been looking forward to that! We got 2 great weeks filled with good training and ofcourse a couple of smiles. ;) I did have some struggles with a small illness from the travel but could train it away and only had to adjust the training a tiny bit becouse of it.
We got some TTT training done and some great days in the hills. The weather wasn't super but with a few degrees warmer than Sweden, DRY roads and no snow I was a happy girl. Also only 2 days with rain and I had no problem going inside for those days to get my intervalls done. Must say it's the perfect place for training with our DS Chris giving us such great opportunities to stay at his place in Limoux. There's everything you can wish for and we even stay 50m from the square so there's no problem getting out of the house and have a coffie in the afternoon, which means you don't have to watch the same four walls all day after trainings. I really can't wait to see the area in summer times, I bet it's even more fantastic than!
Now I've been at home in Sweden for two weeks and I have this great feeling of balance and calmness inside, I am super excited about kicking off this season with my Matrix ladies and I'm sure we are gonna make a lot of great things in the coming months. Bring it on!

cyclefit and trek -bikefit

In december I went on a short trip to London to collect my new training bike and for a bikefit with cyclefit. Christina and I came over from Scandinavia and Penny was kind enough to meet us and give us a tour of London and help us get to the shop where the bikefit was going as we'd have to take the underground for the first time!
We stayed at this grand hotel next to Stansted airport and started the day with the most amazing breakfast early in the morning. We got on to the train and thanks to Pen we made it to cyclefit in the center of London unscathed.
We started up at around 9:30am with a talk about all sorts of things from goals for next season to injuries we’ve had. Christina and I had a room each next to each other and Jimmy was the one mainly helping me (Here’s the staff that helped us but all of them were around helping both of us throughout the day.
So, I started off telling about problems I’ve had mostly with my right knee and how sensitive it is to any changes of position and so on. I’ve also had some back problems after a couple of hard crashes, I’ve been told my hip is not in a straight line and my right foot hasn’t liked me running this fall. That is pretty much all the problems I’ve had with my body from time to time in the past 7 years.
After talking for a bit it was time to look at my body. How everything is proportionated and so on. The first thing Jimmy noticed than was how my right foot isn’t as it should be. He measured in different ways to get a good look at what was happening in that area, he had a look at my leg length, my hips and everything else. He had a chat with physiotherapist, Morgan and he confirmed what Jimmy found out. My right foot collapses when pressure is pushed on to it. The difference from when I sit down with my feet on the floor and when I stand up for example is way too big. And then imagine when I apply pressure to it on the bike. My foot collapsing is then of course the reason why my knee is so sensitive, my foot has been hurting while running and can actually have something to do with my back problems as well. My hips look uneven at first sight but are not, it all comes down to my feet. My feet have one whole shoe size difference when I stand up, all because of this.  
So what is happening because of my collapsing foot when I sit on my bike? First of all, my foot is trying to compensate by pointing my toes down when I pedal. It also makes my toes point in towards the crank, which apparently is the opposite of what normally happens when someone has this problem. All of this also makes my legs use too many of the small muscles and mainly the front of my leg which is not what you want as a bike rider. The main muscle you want to use is your gluteus. When I got on the bikefit bike I could see on a screen exactly which muscles I was using in every pedal stroke. So, not only do I get a big power loss from my feet. I also lose power from using the wrong muscles too much. Jimmy even told me he can’t understand how I’ve been able to ride like this for this long and at this level.
The guys made me new soles, heated and fitted for my feet for my cycling shoes. We fitted the bike as good as it can without changing my cleats since it will be too much of a change with the soles and the new position on the bike, all at the same time. We’re going to keep working on my position and experiment with my feet a bit more to get the most out of my power. I can’t say enough how happy I am to have the privilege to work with these guys. So professional and helpful, Christina and I both felt very much taken care of and they really dug deep to make everything as good as possible for us. I’m really looking forward to seeing these guys soon and continue our work together.
These guys are actually the same guys that help Cancellara and the whole Trek Factory racing team with their bike fitting and I would say that says quit a lot about their knowledge and professionalism.
Except from the bike fit we also had a nice lunch with Chris from Trek, a photo shoot and a small city sightseeing around center of London. We got some quick shopping at Oxford Street done and a cozy walk around a Christmas market and a few streets of London. It was really an intense but interesting and great day and I thank the team of cyclefit and Trek for an amazing job!
Now I’m getting used to the new position and it’s a big difference from before. Suddenly my feet feel comfy in my shoes and I didn’t even know they didn’t before. I already feel that I’m using some different muscles and am excited to see where this will lead. I’m hopefully going to come out much stronger from this in 2015! I might even ride cobbles well after this, not losing all my powers in the vibrations. Let's hope so!
Jimmy looking at me through the screen while i ride.
Harriet came to say hi and got her feet fitted, just like i did.
 And a couple a 'behind the scene' from the photoshoot.

2015 kicks off with spain!

It's heavy winds and cold in Sweden at the moment, rain and almost no sun at all. We're in the middle of the grey Swedish winter... In less than 2 months the season kicks off in Belgium and I do need my hours in january. That's why it was an easy decison to take a last minute trip to Spain when i got the opportunity to join Tilina Levin and Hanna Helamb to Torrevieja. So tonight I'm off to Spain for 10 days with (hopefully) tons of sun! It might not be as warm as gran canaria at this point but it's way better than what I've got at home. 
When I get home again it's for 5 whole days, only to work 3 of them, before I leave for Limoux again with most of my teammates in Matrix! Time to collect all those january hours! Keep an eye out here for blogs about my bikefit in december among other things. 
Happy girl at new years!