The total time for the Maillot Jaune wearer of Julian Alaphilippe to complete ten stages of the Tour and reach the first rest day is 45h 27’ 15’’.
So what do you do when you have a day off and are only halfway through the race?
Get out on your bike of course!
You go for a team ride of around four hours. You are keeping your body going, keeping it under strain but giving it a little bit of recovery. Some commentators will tell you that the winner of the Tour is the person who can suffer the most and recover the most between stages of suffering.
Rest days allow the media outlets to take stock of what has happened so far and make fresh predictions about the teams and the riders they will tip to be taking the stage glory and the jerseys overall.
It is like a collective sigh and deep breath all in one go.
Creative people should perhaps follow this pattern. Intense hard work. Rest day. Intense hard work. Rest day. Intense hard work. The creative equivalent of the the final stage procession into Paris and the laps around the Champs Elysees.
The actual length of the ‘rest day’ might be longer than 24 hours but here it is deliberate. Exhaustion and creative numbness don’t come into it. No need for ‘writer’s block’, as we’ve programmed in for our brains to think about something else.
The rest days could be promises of family time/trips out as a reward for your hard work and their patience and understanding.
Remember thought that you still have to get on the bike and spin the legs, because tomorrow it is another stage and another day of hard graft at the office.