"Put me back on my bike," as Tom Simpson famously didn't actually say when he was dying on the slopes of Mont Ventoux.
And after last week's dismal effort, getting back on my bike is exactly what I've done so far this week to startling effect. Started out gently on Sunday with an hour's effort during the exciting but ultimately disappointing Carling Cup Final, then upped the ante on Monday with a gruelling series of five 'pyramid' reps - three minutes on the centre cog, two minutes on the penultimate cog and one minute on the smallest cog, all at 80 rpm on the big chain ring. Two minutes recovery spinning between each.
Last night, I went for brutal grinding. The usual 10-minute warm-up followed by 10 minutes in the centre cog, 10 minutes in the penultimate cog, five minutes in the smallest, all on the big chain ring at as high a cadence as possible. Three minutes rest followed by another 10 minutes in the centre cog, five minutes in the penultimate cog and five minutes in the smallest.
Now I know this all sounds highly technical and tremendously boring, but I had the good fortune of being able to watch highlights of the duel between Michael Rasmussen and Alberto Contador on the Plateau de Beille in the 2007 Tour de France while doing it. I was as spent as Cadel Evans by the end of the effort too.
So heartening progress thus far and there's more punishment afoot tonight. Terrific progress too in the quest to raise a grand for charity. I've got a world of work drumming up more publicity to boost those numbers, so watch this space. Although quite when I'm going to get around to it under the new, strict training regime is anyone's guess.