Fighting fit, welcome to the Zwift Academy

September events

September was a huge month. We had La Ride, a 100 km challenge to be completed in the month of September. We also had the beginning of the Zwift Academy.

What is Zwift?

It’s an online, virtual reality program where you can ride, race or workout with people from all over the world. All whilst in the comfort and safety of your lounge room (or Zwift cave, depending on your set up I guess!!).

Zwift Academy

The Zwift Academy Banner

The Zwift Academy runs for 6 weeks and is open to all women. In the qualifying period there are eight workouts, five bunch rides and at least two races that must be completed to ‘graduate’. The top ten women from the qualifying round are invited to take part in the semi-finals. After a few more weeks of workouts, three will be chosen to attend a camp with professional women’s cycling team, Canyon-SRAM. By the end of this camp, one woman will be given a professional women’s contract to race in 2018.

2016 winner

I have followed last year’s winner Leah Thorvilson’s updates on social media and I am very impressed with her tenacity. Cycling is such a mental game and to be thrown from very little/no racing experience to racing in the European professional peloton must have been daunting to say the least!! I personally found transitioning from triathlon to the National Road Series (Australian domestic team series) a huge jump which I struggled with greatly. So I have the utmost respect for Leah! She’s also rather hilarious so I can recommend you follow her on Instagram.

Time to workout!

I purchased my Kickr mid-year and have found the workouts on Zwift to be of exceptional value. There’s nothing like a solid few weeks of ergo’s to get you fighting fit! So I signed up for the academy this year to do just that, get inspired with thousands of other women around the world to get fit and stick to a routine for a while!

I’m currently into week two. I have completed two bunch rides, four workouts and will do my first race this Thursday. Whilst I was flying last week and felt on top of the world, today I felt woeful and didn’t actually quite complete the whole workout. I was really disappointed but some days you just don’t have it. My heart rate was so high at quite low watts. I think my body was telling me something is not quite right. Thankfully I can repeat this workout later in the qualifying period. I know I’ll be back stronger (and hopefully with a more normal heart rate!).

I wish everyone all the best that is taking part. It’s an exciting time and a powerful training tool! I know that for me it’ll translate to kicking my boyfriend’s butt out on the road this Summer. Well I’ll be testing that theory anyway!

My Zwift Avatar courtesy of my Mum, the Zwift Queen, Sharron Yaxley


I have written for FE Sports, the Ridley Distributor in Australia on the link here:


It’s wonderful to think that after what seemed like a long Winter, there’s plenty in store to keep me motivated!

Here is a great blog on motivation by fellow La Ridley blogger Fatima





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