Jersey 2015 - The International Island Games - Imminent

It's almost here.

This time next week, I'll be desperately trying to recover. Recover from what will undoubtedly be the hardest XC mountain bike race I have done; ahead of what will probably be an even harder road race the following morning.

The Jersey 2015 Natwest International Island Games is imminent.

It seems everything this year has been geared around this event, for me. From those long winter training miles in wind and rain, right down to taking it a bit easier on greasy corners for fear of jeopardising my fitness and training, in the lead-up to this event. Everything has been focussed on trying to be on top form for this coming week. I've done as much as I can now...

The Island Games is best described as a mini-Olympics, exclusive to small islands from around the globe. Athletes come together from as far flung places as Bermuda, Mallorca and The Shetland Isles; all to compete against each other in a wide range of sports.

The week promises to be a great festival of sport, and a great chance to ride somewhere new, with some of my closest friends.

How will I fare? That's hard to tell. The Island Games attracts world class professional athletes, including the likes of Mark Cavendish (a few years back). Putting yourself against those that are lucky enough to ride bikes full-time, is always a challenge; but I'm hopeful of a decent result, and we have a very strong team, particularly in the mountain bike.

I'm taking part in three events, unfortunately on back-to-back days. I have a two hour mountain bike XC race on Monday afternoon, followed by a road race the following morning; then to finish things off, a fast and furious mountain bike criterium race (in a park!) on the Wednesday evening (I think I'll be ready for a beer after that!). It's set to be a tough few days, but I'm very much looking forward to it.

I'm on taper now, and have cut back to minimal riding as we lead up to the event. A few short, sharp efforts is all that resembles intensity, and will hopefully keep the high-end ticking over, whilst my legs regain some freshness. There is nothing more I can do now, really; except pack, rest up, and mentally prepare myself for races that will no doubt need me to turn myself inside-out. Jersey, we're coming for you...

The 2011 Natwest Island Games. Where it all began for me, including the start of racing, and the start of this blog!


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