It’s Christmas time, which means the first half of the off-season is coming to an end, writes Dan Patten.

Time has flown by since finishing up my season in Belgium mid-October. The body was certainly in need of recovery, after hitting the ground too many times in the second half of the season.

Not least because on two occassions I was hit by cars, with the last time coming just a week before the end of the season.

Although I was still to race, these sort of things are bound to take their toll on the body. Luckily I have a really great chiropractor here in the UK who sorts me out in no time!

I decided to take more time off than usual, until the body felt restored to some form of normality.

Still, there wasn’t exactly much time to just put my feet up. I’ve already been back to Belgium twice since returning mid October (clearly I cant keep away from the heartland), although it did also include a party or two as well as watching the Koppenberg Cross and a night at the Gent Six day.

Dan Patten
Sven Nys (Landbouwcredit-Colnago) tears up the climb.
Dan Patten
Cross is a big deal over here.

I’ve also been up to Scotland for the Braveheart dinner as a guest of Callum Gough and not long after this it was a trip to Bradford for the Dave Rayner fund dinner.

Having been supported by the Dave Rayner Fund in 2010 I am happy to say that I have just been told that I will also be a supported rider again in 2011, something I am most grateful for.

In addition to the Dave Rayner Fund, The Grays Public Purposes and Recreational Charity (a local charity to me) have provided support for 2011 as they did for 2010, which again I am very thankful for.

Dan Patten
Getting everything checked over, ready for another season in the heartland.

The biggest change and development that has occured ahead of 2011 is that I am now working with David Harmon, the voice of British Eurosport, of the Spokesmen Agency. As I continue to make my way in the sport, having the support of David is going to be a huge help to me and I look forward to what we can do in 2011 and beyond.

Amongst all this I have of course started my training for 2011. A mixture of cycling, running, swimming and my usual routine of strength/core/conditioning work, has got me feeling more like a cyclist again.

It’s been a little stop-start at times, having also come down with the flu a few weeks back, however it’s all been contributing towards to the base, which will of course be ramped up come the new year.

We’ve also had more snow here in the South East of England than I have ever seen before, which has meant less time on the road. Luckily for me I am a bit of a turbo trainer addict and so clocking up the hours still has not been a problem. Recently, I was sent through some Cycleops rollers from Paligap, which have been a very nice addition and helped me to mix things up that little bit more.

Throw in a weekend at Le Beau Velo in Shoreditch, London, for a catchup with the guys there, and a valuable bike fitting session, and you could say its still been a fairly busy couple of months.

Dan Patten
Getting measured up at Le Beau Velo.

The festive holidays are here and I look forward to enjoying a nice christmas at home with the family. Come the new year I will be looking to head to sunnier parts where I’ll be thinking of nothing but training.

Until then, I’ll say thanks for supporting me and my blog here on VeloVeritas, and I wish you all Season’s Greetings…

Happy Christmas!

Dan Patten