Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Christmas Wind Down

It's all slowing down over the Christmas period. I've had a few work parties to go to which has limited the number of times I've ridden to work and the weekend rides with friends have slowed a bit as various people haven't been able to make it. I went out on 20th December with my friend Paul but we could only go for 2/3 hours as I needed to be back to go for lunch with my family. As it turned out, Paul wasn't feeling his best after a work's do, so the ride was gentle. It was a really nice change to know that the ride was going to be shorter and the pace was going to be easy. The weather was fantastic as well - a slight chill but with the sun out and the country side looking lovely. We ended up doing about 38 miles which wasn't too bad.

I have to admit, that I'm getting a bit nervous about how getting back on the bike going's to be after Christmas cos I've eaten loads and haven't done any exercise for over a week. I'm back at work on Friday, so I suppose I should ride to work to ease into it, but I'm going out on Saturday night with friends so I can't see myself getting a long ride in at the weekend.

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Mechanical Disasters

Because of the weather, I've only managed 3 days cycling to work this week. I felt good on Wednesday so I decided to try and push the average speed up. I only managed to get it up to around 18 mph, which was a bit disappointing over only 25 minutes. It is a bit hilly but then it's sticking in my mind that I read an article in Cycling Weekly a few weeks ago about a 75 year old man who holds the 1 hour record for his age group and he managed 22 mph !

Went out for a 75 mile ride with 2 friends today whcih turned into a bit of a disaster. First I punctured and at the same time, my friend Adrian stopped just round the next bend. When I wen to him after fixing my puncture, his chain stay had bent and his whell wouldn't rotate freely without the chain jamming. He was forced to cycle 10 miles at 5 mph to Luton train station and get the train home. I carried on with my friend Paul, but I got 2 more punctures and we got a bit lost. My cycle computer reset itself so I don't know how far we went but it was probably around 55/60 miles. It took ages and the whole time we were against the clock as Paul had to be back to get to his in-laws for Sunday lunch! Still must have done me some good as my legs are killing me !

More Ice !

Headed out last Sunday for 75 miles but on a different route. We had to delay the start by an hour because there was ice everywhere. We decided we would have to stick main roads because of the ice, but still after a few miles we had to keep changing the route as we came more and more ice. At one point we couldn;t see where we were going becuase of thick fog. It's all still better than not going out at all but it was hard work. We did about 48 miles in the end.

Wednesday, 3 December 2008


Coming home from work yesterday, I took a right hand turn, slipped on ice and hit the road with my right knee. Just ended up with a bruised knee and torn overshoes but not too bad. Bike's fine luckily.

I hate the ice and the fact I have to train in this crap weather !

Sunday, 30 November 2008


Went out last Sunday for 75 miles including twice up Bisson Hill this time. It was fantastic. I felt strong all the way round. It's the first one where I've enjoyed all of it.

I got a cycle computer for my birthday last week and what a difference it's made. I'm obsessed with my average times to work now ! Trouble is, I've completely knackered myself by sprinting to work each day so I used my motorbike on Friday. Because of Christmas shopping commitments (!) I'm missing this week's long ride today. I think it'll do me some good though. Maybe I'll switch to 3 day's cycling to work and 2 in the gym.

Sunday, 16 November 2008

75 miles again

Went out with 2 friends, both of who are dojng L'Etape as well. We met up at 07:30 this morning and set out for a 75 mile route. I felt great at the beginning and was really enjoying it. After the half way point though a fine rain started which brought the temperatures falling down. The last half wasn't as much fun as the first half but all the miles count ! Back home for 12:45. A friend cam round for a late sunday lucnh which was a great way of finishing the day. I have to admit that there were a few points round the course where I was beginning to realise the enormity of the task that lies ahead.

Saturday, 15 November 2008

Bike service

My front derailleur stopped working this week and I had to take the bike in for a service. Turned out I needed a new cassette on the back as well. I've been thinking about if I should upgrade the components on my existing bike or try to justify the cost of a new bike for L'Etape. I'm pretty sure I'll go for the new bike in the end. Still, it cost me £94 for the bike service and now I'm looking at another £1,000 + for a new bike !

Been cycling to work every day this week which is about 7 miles each way. Had to do it on my mountain bike which made it a bit harder.

Got 75 miles booked in for the weekend as well so that should bring the total up to 145 miles for the week.

Only 9 months to go !

Saturday, 8 November 2008

Gale Force Winds

Got up at 06:30 this morning ready for a long cycle with friends but the forecast is for gale force winds today, so we've had to cancel.

Training Starts

For those of you don't know, L'Etape is an event where "normal" people can cycle a stage of the Tour De France. Normally around 9,000 people do the event. This year the event 175km with 3 category 3 climbs and ends at the top of Mount Ventoux.

I've been cycling a bit on and off but never attempted anything like this before. I've been thinking about entering L'Etape for a while and have finally decided to take the plunge.

Went out last Sunday with 3 friends for the first long cycle of many for the next 9 months ! It turned out to be 75 miles in the end but went surprisingly well.
Went out that afternoon and bought some overshoes as my feet were freezing.