Caught Red Handed – ARGON18 Gallium Pro

After a very positive experiance with the Argon18 E-118 last year I decided not only to upgrade to the new triathlon bike E-119+ this year but also get the Krypton XRoad to be able to put on some fat tires on and ride the rough winter roads.

All this was well planned and the bikes are on their way. Then something not planned happened – I was offereed to buy a Gallium Pro from last year – used only one season by the Scandinavian ARGON18 Team. 

What could I do? – how could I resist? The Gallium Pro arrived today and while unpacking my wife comes home for lunch (which I did not expect) and finds me in the bedroom unpacking.

Oopss…. How do I explain that there are two more on the way and that you really need to have three bikes (at least). 

Anyone needs a Pinarello Dogma 60.1 only 5 years old? It’s a great bike – don’t get me wrong, but after trying out ARGON18 I really don’t need other bikes. Or perhaps I should keep it as a spare…at the country house….just in case…. 

Some keep their bikes in the basement, some on the street – I like to keep them close and safe (thank you AnnCatrine for being a understanding wife 😉

Happy riding and remember that there is always room for one more Argon18!

// The bike collector

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Ur innehållet:

  • Ditt Bästa år! Ny start 2020, Nybörjarprogram, Smarta tips
  • Spring i skogen, därför blir du lycklig av naturen
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  • Vår nästa skidstjärna Moa Lundgren är en grym löpare
  • Prylar: Redo för vintern!
  • Forskning: 80/20 – regeln – bevisat bra

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Road Rage

I actually enjoy many aspects of getting older. One is that I don’t get so upset anymore.

There is a cyclists saying; “there are only two types of cyclists, those who have crashed and those who will crash”. As I have spent between 2,500 – 15,000km/year on a road bike for the past+30years and have had more crashes than I can remember.

Over the years I have broken my arm, ribs and face – not to mention the numerous hip and elbow trophies I have received over the years. I have experienced a nurse waking me up on the operation table by brushing my face clean from asphalt with a steel brush.

I have flown over a car, throw myself on the street under a car to avoid a direct hit, flown into a car after breaking the window and neck-rest and landed in the back seat with my face (by this time helmets where fortunately invented and probably saved my life). I have slided over the hood of a car in Florida, like in a commercial, without a scratch and had the driver come out to offer me a check as compensation for cutting me off – driving into his golf course.

Due to my waste experience in accidents Im now quite good at avoid them. I use bike paths whenever possible (if they are at all possible to ride on which often is not the case this time of year), I never ride in big packs that take up the whole road. I ride as close to the curb as possible. 

But still – I frequently get di** heads that pass by with a 5-10cm distance between their BMW and my bike at 90km/hr. I hardly react anymore. As long as they don’t slow me down or hit me I typically just give them the usual “birdy” and if I catch up with them at an intersection further on ask them if they noticed that they failed to knock me of the road. Often they then claim that they did not see me…. Most of my rides are out on the countryside with very little traffic so I guess they are napping at the wheel.

Every now and then I get one of those Senior Citizens that thinks his responsibility (it’s always a he) in the world to enforce the law (the law that he believes in) in a way he see fitting (often by using his car as a tool for law enforcement). 

Yesterday it happened again. I was riding out on the countryside on Ekerö, along Stemhamravägen. The section I was riding is restricted to 30km/hr as it passes by a school. With very little traffic and no vehicles oncoming this Jaguar passes me, breaking the speed limit as I was going 30, only to immediately slow down and turn to the right in front of me – only there is no road – the idiot is just cutting me off so I have to stop or ride into the side of the car. I stop and he drives off again. But the guy is obviously not that bright. There is a long stretch of 30 coming up so I bike up beside his window and ask what the hell he is doing. He informs me that cyclists should use the bike path (the one that is covered in gravel as they are re-building it….). He tries to speed off again. 

I follow him into a parking lot in Stenhamra. When the old fart finally steps out of the car I feel so sorry for him, what a shitty life this old man must have. Running around and trying to push people of their bikes in the middle of the day. 

I ask him what he thinks gives him the right to use his car as a weapon to hurt people who he thinks are not allowed on the road. He responds that he didn’t and that “he didn’t see me”. I ask him how he could miss me – dressed in bright yellow – driving in the middle of the day, passing a school at 30km/hr.

He walks away saying – ”go bike on the 30km/hr road and make sure not to fall down”.

I tell him that there is a high likelihood that one of us will end up in hospital if a similar scenario where to present itself again. 

Once I got home I call the police and reported the guy. It’s unlikely that anything will happen but hopefully they will at least contact him and he might think twice before trying to run someone of the road again. I am so used to being disrespected in traffic that I am always ready – but there are many that are just starting to ride bikes.

So what can we do to get a better harmony in the traffic between cyclists and cars, I don’t think it’s violence (even if it is tempting to give a guy like this ”a good uppercut to the crouch”). 

Here are the things that I try to do in my day to day ”trying to avoud another bike crash”:

– Don’t race and try to set “Strava KOM” in the city and on cyclepaths that are busy with kids, crossings, runners etc. It just pisses people off and it’s like asking for hate and accidents.

– Obey traffic rules (at least when there are people around).

– Show gratitude when someone stops for you at a crossing – spread some love 😉

– Ride like every car will most likely try to run you down/off the road at any second – be ready to jump into what ever is on the side of the road.

– Never assume that the driver of the car that is standing still at a stop sign (while you are coming down the main road) sees you, even if you are staring the person right into the eyes it is very possible that those eyes have no real connectivity to the brain or that the brain has no capacity to process the image of a cyclist. Many drivers assumes that cyclists only travel at a speed of 12km/hr not 35-40km/hr and they think they have plenty of time to drive straight out in front of you and creating a perfect launchpad for you. 

– In packs – ride single file if there is traffic.

The driver of the Jaguar is more of a fundamentaist I guess…

If you witnessed the incident or know someone that did please drop me a line with your contact details so the police can get in contact.

Stay safe and ride carefully!

PS. Share this article with as many as you can and wish!!



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Comparatively thinking or YOLO

This time of the year I’m sure that I’m not alone when I feel just a little bit of jealousy looking at the images Swedish pro athletes are posting on social media.

Training camps from around the world. Sara Sjöström and National Swim team in Florida. Patrik Nilsson, Åsa Lundström, David Näsvik @ Playitas, Lisa Nordén in South Africa and, not to be forgotten, Fredric Croneborg – who manages to have fun in the sun all year round.

And here we are, the age groupers, working 9-5, getting home to the mental and physical darkness of winter and our indoor trainers. We know that we are most likely 3 month away from frequent quality outdoor cycling.

On social medias everyone who’s stuck in the icebox (Sweden this time of the year) are posting pictures of their self-inflicted misery. I don’t know how many hundred photos of people on trainers I have seen over the past 2 months – my eyes hurt.

Running is not much better as we use uncomfortable spike shoes that feel like ski-boots or run on the indoor treadmill like a hamster in a wheel.

But to all of you who think it can’t get any worse – I bring words of hope, words of comfort! It’s all comparatively! Depending on what you compare with you can decide that you are either miserable or really fortunate.

If you compare with the pros, you will most likely feel the kind of envy that only the Grinch who stole Christmas can feel – you will stand on your mountain of pain and look at them pros riding in the sun, swim in outdoor pools and run on perfect trails in Stellenbosch. Week after week they can train and not have to worry about a thing (except the fact that they one day will be a grumpy 50 year old grinch as well). But they don’t worry about that – yet!

But if you compare yourself with the average sedentary Joe Schmoe, you are a hero. To even get on a trainer after work takes determination. To get out on your +25km run in <10° bellow zero takes guts. Not to mention the glory you feel when you bring out the good old chainsaw and cut up your 50m lane in the icy lake to get your 4,000 meters swim done as the pool was closed (or is that something only I do?).           

You can also compare yourself to the less fortunate athletes who are injured and can’t train, the ones who have lost their motivation and can’t find it among the mountains of excuses. Or the athletes that are trying to train, while being forced to live like our great grandparents did 100 years ago – yes, that would be me – they are still not finished with the re-plumbing of our apartment building.

Enjoy what you have – even if the hours available to train are too few and you have to do them on the indoor torture station. Once spring is here you will realize that the indoor trainer is actually a really effective tool to get fast and strong.

PS: When I wrote this a few weeks ago and read it, I got so fed up with the re-plumbing and lack of biking outdoors that I flew to Gran Canaria and got 10 days in the hills together with the TriMaster. As my son says “YOLO”.

Start of the beautiful climb to Soria  

I have to say that having the discipline to spend close to 10 hours/week on the trainer in January really paid off and I felt stronger in the hills than I have ever done before, guess that discipline is not something you loose with age but rather the opposite. Don’t give up!

Cazadores @ 1,300meters – a good 100km 2,500m elevation ride to start the camp with.

Gran Canaria is spectacular with regards to biking and I found that it has much more interesting cycling than the other Canary islands like Lanzarote and Fuerteventura – perhaps that is why Thomas Hellriegel likes to train in GC. In a few years it will be as popular as Mallorca, I am sure, at least for those of us who love climbing.

Road up to Soria @ 650meters – continues to Bartolome @ 1,100meters

Close to Agaete on the North west side of the island.

Climb to St. Lucia 

Hope that you appreciate the beautiful nature on the pictures as much as I do – I find that we have all seen enough selfies and ”ass on bike/trainer shots” for a lifetime so I am not sharing those here 😉

Happy Training!

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When the going get tough – get your training done.

February and we are months away from training in decent weather.

For me February is typically the month when motivation can be hard to find some days.

For the past months, motivation and peace of (training) mind has been challenged to a whole new level as our apartment building is in the midst of a never ending re-plumbing. 

Shower? Perhaps this summer….

Things we triathletes have rather frequent use of, and take for granted, like indoor running water, toilet, shower. All those facilities have been moved to a trailer on the street 3 floors down since October 2015. The builder was contracted to be done in 6-8 weeks and it has now reached 16 weeks – without anything being close to finished or usable. They kept the timeplan with regard to demolition – they wrecked the appartment according to plan. They just never got around to rebuilding it.   

So what can you do when things feel difficult and all you want to do is something else than trying to find your training gear in the middle of a construction site – that shows no sign of being completed anytime before the summer?

 Nice set-up…Get up on it!

I guess simply; quiet my thoughts, try to find my gear, do my session according to plan.

15-20min into the training the frustration has evaporated, heart rate is back at a comfortable pace and I remember what I always used to say, “life starts at 140bpm”. 

”Patience – the breakfast of champions” (as nothing can be cooked in this mess!)

Ohh Well – Happy camping!

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Everyone who read the story of how the Danish Lawaetz Brothers managed to not only qualify for Kona, but how three of them even broke 9 hours on the Ironman distance in their first attempt – training only 9-10hours per week could suspect there was some fishy going on. Later we would find out that one of the brothers (Thomas) was caught in a doping test and banned for four years.

It’s easy to get upset about this, I know as I got extremely upset! I am not alone thinking that anyone cheating and using EPO should be banned for life, not only four years!!!

Doping is a real problem and no matter how much testing increases – it will always be people who decides that results and vanity is more important that honesty and values.

In an interview with Slow Twitch, Alex Taubers (German former Pro-triathlete) talks about the problem: ”Whoever thinks that doping is only part of the elite world likely also believes in Santa Clause. A study conducted at Ironman Frankfurt and 70.3 Wiesbaden a few years ago showed that 1/3 of those age group athletes questioned admitted (anonymously) to have doped. But one has to think that it was and currently is likely more”. 

But who are the biggest losers? Is it us – who are clean, who prioritize training, who makes the necessary “sacrifices” to be able to train three or four times more than the likes of the now infamous cheater Thomas Lawaetz, CEO at Åreknudeklinikkerne.

From a pure mathematical standpoint we are the loosers. We spend more time training and typically don’t get the result that dope heads get.

From an ethical/legal standpoint dopers are losers, as it’s wrong and forbidden to cheat and from a philosophical standpoint I would argue that it’s much worse than breaking laws – cheating requires you to compromising values and standards and often comes back and bites you in the ass.


Cheating or not cheating is a choice that every individual has. It’s up to each and every one to set the standards we whish to aspire to in life. The choice defines us and we will live with it for the rest of our lives.

We all have a choice to take the high road and avoid any kind of cheating – even if it compromises our results, for example doing intervals in races to get away from packs and carefully examining what we put in our bodies.

Or we can take the low road and claim, “it’s impossible to avoid packs, everyone else does it”, ”I didn’t know that what I took was on the doping list” or ”my doctor injected EPO, gave me growth hormones and topped me up with a few pints of my best shape blood – how could I know – I was asleep”. 

Bottom line is that if we decide to apply the highest requirements on our self – to always practice good sportsmanship and be honest – we will have the benefit of looking ourselves in the mirror, every day for the rest of our life, knowing that we have made our self the best we could be.  

Once we realize that our ambitions to test our limits in triathlons are not about projecting an image of ourselves to the outside world and refuse to get absorbed in vanity, ”likes” addiction and external approvals – and rather see racing and training as a step in our personal development journey, to further build our characters. Then there will be no need for drug-testing or even draft Marshalls.


I realize that this sounds like Utopia and moral preaching – but it’s really that simple – it’s up to each of us to make the choice. The desire to qualify for Hawaii or win will bring out the best and worst in people – we will always have temptations and we will always have the opportunity to chose right from wrong.

Personally, doping was a big reason I retired from racing Ironman triathlons in 1998.

After racing Hawaii quite well in 1997, finishing 74;th overall, several people that was ahead of me got caught for doping and I realized that to get to top 50 or 20 would be impossible if I would not go down the path of cheating and doping.

I had trained with a few of those who got caught. They were extremely good athletes with high training discipline and lots of talent but what really set us apart was their phenomenal recovery. After the really hard days I would need an easier recovery day to absorb and rebuild while they did another hard day, and another. Apparently, the kind of recovery you get when you take growth hormones. 

Before I knew that they were using – It made me think I was weak and I started training even harder. It did not work – I trained so hard that I became anemic. Even if I was eating perfectly, my body could not handle the training load and I ended up in hospital.

I was put on in a room with cancer patients who also had their arms connected to a plastic bag above their head. The doctor gave me iron-infusion (IV) and B12 injections – which is the way they treat someone with close to no red bloodcells left in the blood stream.

Fortunately I responded well to the iron-infusion and slowly recovered. Meanwhile I learned about the unfair advantages that my oppnents had taken, it threw me off, I lost my motivation and I decided to take a long break from racing. I realized that I was already training harder than my body could handle and could only get to top 100 in the world – clean. Getting on drugs to boost performance was always out of the question for me – I had reached my top level as a clean athlete. 

The break lasted 18 years and when I now re-start – I do it purely for pleasure and to enrich life – the way the sport was intended. Now I focus on appreciating the motion, the mental challenge and finally – the test and proof of character in racing. It’s sad to know that many people in the races will be faster by doping and cheating but I chose to not let it affect me, knowing that I can look myself in the mirror every day and say, “I’m clean”.  

Stay clean and happy!

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The optimal challenge – Inspire your kids to train with you!

Both my wife and I are dedicated endurance athletes. She used to run marathons but has recently started to focus on half marathons instead as she can do more of them per year.

With both parents running (and one of us swimming and biking as well) you would think that our kids would be interested in participating in at least one of the sports  – but that is not the case (yet!).

Growing up I tried a lot of different sports before I finally got hooked on triathlon at the age of 26. We are trying to provide the same opportunity to find a sport for our kids and encourage them to try as many sports as they like to hopefully one day find a sport they love and stay active in all their life. 

It would be great if they found a liking for triathlon but it seems that it’s currently not progressing in that direction. Every once in a while I ask my daughter if she doesn’t want to become fast like Lisa Nordén, but she points out that she is only 9 and would like to think further about such important decisions before committing.

Anyway – I have actually managed to get my son to run with me and it’s really a great way to spend time together with your children. 

First try at the age of three:

We had a blazing start down the hill towards Rålambshovsparken in Stockholm and probably did the first 500 meters in 4 minutes. Once we got to the water and he saw the swans and ducks swimming, he lost focus and rather wanted to feed them than run. What kind of behavior is that for a future Ironman World Champion? – I must say that I got deeply concerned! 

Second attempt at the age of eleven:

Version 2

I was doing a easy 15km recovery and my son came along for 7km. Amazed at how easy it was for him to run a 7km I remembered when I was a kid and had to run with my dad. I thought I was going to die and didn’t run again until I had to in the army. It was different back then.

During the Christmas holidays I managed to get my daughter to come for a swim and as it went really well – she is a natural talent – I suggested that she starts practicing with SPIF. She was not too eager to try that….

My son now comes along for a 7-8km run every week and enjoys it but if given a choice of playing Star Wars Battlefront and running with dad, well I will not even try answering that question.

I can really recommend taking your kids with you on some easy sessions and perhaps they will be inspired and become the next Lisa Nordén or Patrik Nilsson – either way – if they keep it up they will eventually beat you severly at your game and I really look forward to that day.

Enjoy spending quality time with your kids!


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