LAST week I was in London for the press launch of the Women’s Tour. If you’ve not heard of it, it is the UCI Women’s World Tour stage race that travels across the roads of Britain (well, England) and has been running for the past three years.

It’s the female equivalent of the Tour of Britain and last year it was won by Lizzie Deignan (nee Armitstead). Many of the top World Tour teams turn up and what I’m trying to say is, it’s a big deal. The big news to go with it is that this year Team WNT, in our first year as a UCI professional team, will be riding. And I’m terrified!

The trouble with attending events like this is that you end up acting as an ambassador for the race and so people expect you to have inspiring ambition for it. Which I do. But my inspiring ambition is to hopefully be there for a bunch sprint on the final stage, not win the bleeding overall. You have to understand (can you hear the pleading in my voice?) that training for a track race such as, for example, the team pursuit, is quite different from training for a five-day stage race.

One lasts a little over four minutes, requires speeds close to 60km/h and much technical precision. The other has stages as long as 150km and with more than 2000m of climbing. We all agree that an athlete who can excel at both simultaneously is like only eating the suggested serving of Ben and Jerry’s – impossible.

At the moment I’m training with the goal of a respectable (read: super fast) performance in the individual pursuit at the track world championships in April. So I’m in the gym trying to maintain muscle mass, I’m on the turbo doing intervals at the power target I’ve set and I’m on the track doing race pace efforts. What I’m not working on is getting my weight down to make climbing easier, because a calorie deficit would leave me unable to recover from current training. And I’m not doing hours and hours of riding at aerobic threshold to condition myself for long distances, because I’d lose my ultimate three-minute bang.

Basically, if you put me on the start line for the Women’s Tour tomorrow, you likely wouldn’t be seeing me at the finish line. The good news is the race isn’t tomorrow, it’s in June. I’ll have seven weeks between the end of the track world championships in Hong Kong and the start of the Women’s Tour in which to transform all of the above excuses. I suppose I’m just peddling them now so it doesn’t come as a shock if I’m not a world-class climber come June.

That said, I am actually off to do a stage race in Valencia prior to the track worlds. This race, Semena Ciclista Valencia, is a lot shorter and flatter, however. I’m hopeful it will supply some nice endurance conditioning a month out from the worlds. It also includes a 5km prologue. Unless said prologue is all uphill and has 759 corners, I should be in with a shot of not coming last. Maybe not even second or third-last but much, much higher.

My Team WNT team-mate on the road but Team Ireland adversary on the track, Lydia Boylan, will also be racing. I’m excited about the season ahead racing with Lydia (the Irish national road champion) because we can hopefully share advice on combining the track and road seasons. You would expect the regular switch between working with and working against someone would be bizarre, when in truth it rarely causes issues. A pity really when there seems to be a market for sporting autobiographies, yet one rarely sells without some drama.

I might see if Lydia wants to switch my chammy cream with super glue in exchange for a cut of profits on the book I write about how crazy she is.

I’ll also have to ask Elinor Barker to contribute something for a chapter or two. Elinor and I have matching Olympic gold medals but are often rivals, not for spots in the pursuit team but for places on an individual podium. This happened recently at the national track championships but was nothing compared to the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

At the time we trained together as GB riders, lived together and often did what limited socialising us cyclists get up to, together. For two weeks she wore Welsh kit and I Scottish kit as we tirelessly fought to come out on top in some of the biggest races of our careers, then we went home and had to decide whose turn it was to cook.

But like I say, if only at some point she’d switched my shampoo with hair removal cream, I’d have that book deal.