This is a lesson in motivation by Anna Friborg, one of the most impressive and inspiring cyclists Sigr has the pleasure of knowing.
Someone once asked "What in the world is going on in Anna Friborg's head?"
”It was lucky Anna smiles, because I don't have the answer to that question. When the clock starts ticking, everything else becomes unimportant except the way to the goal. How do you explain a head like that?”
Anna has already done several Everestings. Last summer she became the first Swedish woman to finish an Everesting 10k. Her time shot her into 7th place worldwide.
"Everesting 10k Roam" is the name given to one of the biggest cycling challenges on earth. 10,000 altitude meters followed by 400 km. On a bike. In 36 hours.
So far, only a few women in the world have cycled their way to a place in the Hall of Fame. Anna's goal was to try to become a part of this exclusive crowd.
We asked Anna to tell us about her journey.
- The Alps, Dolomites and Pyrenees are a dream to cycle in, but as they say "there's no place like home" especially during Covid. So I had to find somewhere close to home that was within a Covid-safe distance from home. Eventually I made my mind up. Hallandsåsen it was. Hallandsåsen is about the closest thing I could find that was similar to European mountain ranges.
- This time I decided I would focus on getting the job done instead of chasing a particular time. The rules state that you can do the challenge in two parts. As long as you complete it within 36 hours. It really is the perfect autumn challenge and a great way to keep the fires of motivation burning.
- The hill in Östra Karup (Sweden) suits me. I know this because I did an Everesting 10k there this summer. An obvious choice.
The plan was to ride solo. Without a support team.
Stage 1: 7000 altitude meters and 270 km.
Stage 2: 3000 altitude meters and 130 km.
- I started stage 1 at dawn. At 6.18 I started my Garmin. The weather was humid but mild. The pink sunrise was magical. I immediately felt that my Gravel cycling in Hasslövbacken this summer had had an effect. I found a good rhythm and worked on it. I managed to synch short stops. Tried to eat on the bike. My nuclear fuel - Umaras elderberry sport drink kept my system topped up.
- I wanted to keep total stop time during the day under 75 min, which I succeeded with. The day went fast. Ewa Witt and Håkan cycled with me for a while. Thanks for the company guys!
- By 7.30 pm it was pitch dark and the discomfort crept in. I had 10 laps left, could I manage it? 😨 I put on the live position sharing on my mobile and called a friend and asked him to keep track of my position... felt a little better... well drive another lap then!... put on music at high volume... if I am going to be attacked by a bear I do not need to hear the rustle in the bushes before! Somehow Flo Rida's "Low" made me feel "high". I got back into the flow and completed all 10 laps. It looked like I had such good margins that I could make a night stop in 8 hours and still have plenty of time for stage 2.
- Woke up rested. Motivated. With an intact body without pain. On again.
- Started at 6.20. Significantly colder. It took until 10 o'clock before my face felt comfortable. Around that time, road workers began blocking the road... what the.... ??
- I decided I would continue even if I had to walk my bike around them... just a little extra spice making things interesting...
- Ewa and Håkan (my service friends) came by again: they were on their way to ”Gräddhyllan” a great coffee shop / bakery. I felt jealous but knew my time would come where I could sit down for coffee and cake (Yes, I love that place!)
- I rode on with only 1000 metres of altitude left. The music went on, I ate my last pancake (easily portable calories!) and finally reached 10,000 meters. Total stop time under 30 min. I took the opportunity to drive away towards Våxtorp to harvest the last 15 km.
- Compared to a 10k that is done non-stop without distance requirements, the "Roam" was much lighter. Now it remains to be seen if my data is accepted 🙏
Spoiler alert: Her data was accepted. 😉
Huuuuge congrats to Anna. We are not worthy!