My Training Space: 'I don't ride to win races, I ride for what it gives me'

Yorkshireman Keith Hansom demonstrates the best use of a spare bedroom once the kids move out...

Keith Hansom's training room
(Image credit: Future)

Each month in this MY TRAINING SPACE series from Cycling Weekly’s print edition, a CW reader shows us around their training room, shed or garage, the part of their home or garden dedicated to all things cycling. They talk us through the equipment, as well as the motivating keepsakes and decorations that keep them training hard. If you’d like to show us around your training space, email a photo to david.bradford@futurenet.com. This time, it’s the turn of Keith Hansom...

I started cycling as a kid, growing up in Scarborough, but my dad was very old-school and cautious. He said, “You can’t have a bike, the roads are too busy” – bear in mind, this was in 1968! Anyway, I had a part-time job, so I saved up and bought a bike regardless. Dad was good about it, in the end. 

After meeting my wife, our family arrived earlier than planned, so cycling was just a social thing. I did a little bit of riding with Scarborough Paragon, but family life took precedence. 

My wife passed away in 2015, and that’s when I came back to cycling properly. I was only 54 at the time, and suddenly had time on my hands, so I went out and bought a bike, and joined Velo Club Beverley. Since Covid, I haven’t done so much riding with the club, but I have carried on riding socially with my friends. 

I started working with a new coach, Tom Ramsay, last autumn, and the difference is immense – though I think he’s trying to kill me sometimes! My FTP increased by 30-40 watts in six months. I’ve always had one eye on cyclo-cross, and that’s on the cards for this year. 

My training room is my grown-up son’s old bedroom, and during lockdown he redecorated it for me. I invested in a Wahoo Kickr smart-trainer and got set up with my laptop. I really enjoy doing turbo sessions, following the intervals on TrainingPeaks while watching a bike race to motivate me. I train five days a week, including two longer rides – more of them outdoors now the weather’s nice.

Rider profile: Keith Hansom

Age: 62

Height: 5ft 8in

FTP: N/A

Rides for: Velo Club Beverley

Lives: Beverley, Yorkshire

Occupation: Retired business support manager

Proudest cycling achievement: Completed the Scarborough Black sportive in 2016 – 123 miles with 13,000ft of climbing

X: @keeferh

Instagram: keithhansom

Let's take a look inside...

Keith Hansom's training room

(Image credit: Future)

1. THE BIKES: My best bike is a 2016 Focus Izalco Max AG2R edition [not pictured], which I love – it’s still well above my pay grade! The bike on the turbo is a Focus Cayo 4.0, the first bike I bought after returning to cycling. My winter bike is a Focus Culebro, next to my Focus Mares CX bike. Finally, there’s my 1978 Peugeot PX10 – the same model as the first bike I ever bought, aged 16.

2. CYCLING BOOKS: I love reading about cycling so have amassed a collection of books. My two favourites are Richard Moore’s Etape and What Goes Around by Emily Chappell, about her years as a despatch rider in London.

3. ROAD SIGN: I helped out as a marshal at the last Tour de Yorkshire, which was fabulous. The weather was awful but thankfully I was stationed outside a pub. I was able to nab a road sign as a memento.

4. WORLD CHAMPS LANYARD: When the World Champs took place in Harrogate [in 2019], a club-mate and I volunteered to help out. We worked at the start of the para-cycling events too. The lanyard is a memory of a great day.

5. 'I DON'T RIDE TO WIN RACES' POSTER: This slogan is pretty much me: cycling is all about what it gives me. On the bike is not necessarily a place to escape, but it’s my place.

6. KIT RAIL: It’s hard to resist buying new kit, even though I’ve got more than I’ll ever need. One of my favourites is an Ellis Briggs jersey, and there’s lots of club kit too.

7. THE TRAINER: I run the Wahoo Kickr through a standard laptop and use a separate TV screen to watch bike races while I’m training.

The full version of this article was published in the 29 June 2023 print edition of Cycling Weekly magazine. Subscribe online and get the magazine delivered to your door every week.

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