Thursday, 24 February 2011

Knee arthroscopy

The reason for the enforced 2 week break!

The reason that I have been cycling and not running is because I have had an issue with my knee since last January which curtailed my running, but was fine cycling. It is also the reason why the whole idea of a cycling challenge came about as a replacement for the running one that I had been planning to do.

Now it may seem like this is badly timed in terms of training for this - but it had always been factored in to my plans! A fortnight of enforced rest now will be beneficial. I've trained well and worked hard up to and including today (also part of the plan) knowing that I'll have time to completely recover without losing too much conditioning before I can ride again!

The findings today were: A tear on the posterior horn of the medial meniscus *edit* this was tidied up */edit* - Good spot, Amy Bateman of Active Physio  Someone who I would recommend that anyone with any sports-related issues goes to see!!!!;
a 'crack' in the articular cartilage (I need to find out what this is all about);
The ganglion seemed to have been a red-herring;
Grade III oA (on the backside of my patella) which had a Chondroplasty (knew about this too);
and slightly unexpectedly.. a partial ACL tear :-O

How on earth did THAT get missed in the summer?????

I haven't spoken to the surgeon yet about it, but I'm expecting some pretty intense physio and stabilisation work to protect that, and I shall quiz the surgeon at length at my clinic appointment

So - plan is to work like a demon with my rehab stuff so that I can get back on the bike as soon as I can, and find out what the bottom line is with my running when I see the surgeon.

The anaesthetic has wiped me out - so I'm going to bed REALLY early tonight!! :o)

Enforced 2 week break!

I knew this was coming and so have been loading my training somewhat this month.

Today I have to have an arthroscopy on my right knee.
There is a ganglion cyst that needs decompressing and the suspicion of a small tear or damage to my Lateral Meniscus which needs tidying up. By this evening I'll know for sure (hopefully) and whatever it is that's going on in my knee which has stopped me running but not cycling - no, I can't work that out either! - will have been sorted out.

As for the 2 week break... The surgeon was pretty confident that I'd be back on the bike in two weeks although running would be about 6 weeks. I recovered from another arthroscopy last summer in that timescale, and the physio who will be doing my post-op rehab is VERY keen to get me sorted as soon as possible.

Either that or she just wants me off her books ;o)

I'll be heading to the hospital fairly soon, and my cruel children are making themselves loads of nice smelling breakfast, and my youngest son just offered to make me a cuppa...

I suspect that I'll be chewing my own arms off by the time I wake from the anaesthetic!!

Monday, 21 February 2011

Longest ride....

..... ever, I think!

I had planned for today to be my long ride, and a chance conversation with a friend who lives in Loughborough and had some kit for us had me scurrying to the Mapping Software to see if a route of the requisite length could be done.

It could - quite easily actually - so I planned a sort-of circular route of a little under 120 miles.

When it came to it - there was quite a bit of wind, from the East - which meant that 40 miles of the outward journey were in to it - and most of that section is a gradual climb!
It was hard work! And those first 62 miles took me 4:14

A cuppa tea and some excellent homemade flapjack really hit the spot, and we had a decent natter before I needed to head back.
I changed my mind about the route - the planned one would have also been into the wind for all but the last 15 miles, so I chose to retrace the way I'd come.

Good decision! Apart from a bit of a 'low' point at around 80 miles, I was pleased with the way I was riding - and I actually started to feel stronger in the last 20 miles. Most odd.

The return was almost 60 miles and took 3:47

The rear mech needs some work though - it became unbelieveably stiff, and shifting to smaller gears almost impossible. Was fine up-shifting though - most odd!

121.87 miles

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Last one of the week - and what's this....

... "Does that sound like RAIN to you?" I asked Lorna when we eventually woke up.
She concurred, and on checking the forecast (looking out of the window) confirmed that it was indeed, precipitating quite a lot!

Judging by the conditions I found out on the road, it had been for quite a while. The rivers on the main roads had clean water in them, and once I got to the minor roads, there were plenty of Across-The-Whole-Road puddles. And some of them were quite deep!!

I don't know about you, but I find splashing through deep puddles strangely satisfying and unclipping the SPD's to lift my feet like you did when you were a kid, never fails to elicit a smile :o)

The deepest of these had a couple of drivers looking at it and wondering whether they could, in fact, safely drive through it. Me - I accelerated - unclipped - and ploughed through it.

A "Wheeeeeeee..." might even have escaped :o)
It came up to the bottom bracket!!!

Although it has been quite a big training week (for me!) I was quite pleased to be feeling strong if a little fatigued in the last few miles - and to catch and pass quite quickly a group of 6 or 7 cyclists out for a group ride.
The other thing I'm really enjoying about cycling is how friendly the vast majority of fellow pedalists are. It's rare for someone to do the ignore you and stare straight ahead thing, and more often than not the folk who you pass or who pass you will have a little chat.

I like that :)

So today was a wet and windy Scotty Dog 42 and it took 2:32.
Pleased with that

Some geeky stats for the week because I have a date with some houses in Cumbria tomorrow and won't be riding!!

5 rides
258 miles
15 hours 49 mins of riding time
Average pace: 16.31mph

It's been a decent week :o)

Friday, 18 February 2011

Inviting yourself for a cuppa....

I had identified today as a decent day for a longer ride, and I gave myself a couple of options.
For a change I decided that I'd ride so that the nice hilly bit that is often towards the end of my rides was nearer the start. It's actually harder in this direction as the climbs are longer!
I planned to simply programme in to my brain 86 (or 105) miles on terrain that I know reasonably well, and let it (my brain) work out how much effort I could expend. It's generally pretty good at that :o)

The first 15 miles or so were into the wind so a little slower than the terrain would otherwise have suggested, but I was lettting Mr Brain dictate the effort/pace level. It was nice to give my legs something to get their teeth into early on with the updulations and corresponding downdulations. I DO enjoy the bumpy bits :o)

As I was pottering along the flatter section heading north, and at about 36 miles, I saw a road sign to the village that a friend of mine lives in.
"I wonder if she's in..." I thought.
So I gave her a call

"Where ARE you?" she asked, "in the middle of nowhere?"

"Kinda - I'm about 6 miles from yours, fancy a visit and a cuppa?"

"What? On your bike? That'll explain the noise!!!! I'll get the kettle on"

"Fantastic - I'll be [does rough calculation] about 25 minutes!"

I hadn't seen Kim for ages, and it was fab to be able to just pop in effectively unannounced for a quick cuppa and a chat.
I DO have a tendency to yatter occasionally, and so I stayed longer than I had planned to - which meant that I was a little short of time for the longer verson of the ride.

The next 25 miles was really nice. Small roads, no traffic, a slight tail wind, and super scenery. A little flat, but you can't have everything, eh?!
Last time I did this route it was in the other direction, and I was slightly flummoxed when the GPS 'blue line' pointed me the wrong way up a one-way street - but it wasn't too hard to sort out.
The miles 60 -70 were a bit more hilly, which was good. Enjoyed that. And when I got to 70 miles I possibly could have taken the longer option, but time was tight - so I decided on the shorter - but with a tweak to add in a couple of miles.

This last section also had a headwind, which I was expecting, but I was very pleased with how strong my legs felt.

In the end it total distance was 88.4 miles and the riding time was 5:40.
Riding over 100 miles would have been perfectly feasible today, and my legs seem to have recovered very nicely. This is all good.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Two Rides ;o)

I wanted to be home when Lorna got in at lunchtime, so I said that I'd do an appropriately short ride this morning. The Scotty Dog circuit takes about 2½ hours, so that was perfect.
I already knew that there was a section of closed road to I'd planned a detour that gave me an extra climb - so that was good!!
There was slightly more headwind than I was expecting in the middle section, but it didn't hold me up too much, and this was a pretty regulation ride.

I had a little firtle with my saddle position once I got back. Back a bit and down slightly. Once Lorna went back to work I thought I'd have a slightly quicker and shorter blast around the short loop (20.8 miles!) I was happy with the altered seat position and with the pace of the ride. It's not often that I average over 18mph, and I was feeling pretty strong.

A reasonable days training given that it was going to be an easy day!

Planning to go longer tomorrow!

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

You have FOUR hours....... GO!

Today was one of those days where there was a window of opportunity to get in a brief climbing session with Lorna, as long as her morning didn't over-run, and I got my training ride done efficiently!
What Lorna actually said was, "I'll aim to be home by 1pm, but don't let that stop you having a decent ride!"
I'd done a little bit of 'fettling' with the bike last night, so it wasn't quite ready to simply jump on and ride into the morning sun.... so I didn't get away until 9. But I reckoned that the 65 mile circuit was 'on', but the 70 would be just a little too long.

Although there was ice on the car, it was a decent enough morning, the sun was out and it didn't look as if there was much 'weather' about the place. Slightly damp roads, but otherwise great riding conditions!
I was almost on auto-pilot for the first 20 miles, because it's a section that I do very regularly, although I was slightly perturbed at the Road Closed sign along a section that I NEEDED to ride if I wasn't going to have a long and tedious diversion.
The road was being resurfaced! But I saw a group of cyclists coming the other way and surmised that I could get through.
Technically this was true - although I think the guys doing the road were slightly bemused at the sight of me wending my way through their vehicles! I'll plan to avoid it tomorrow and Friday after which they should be finished!!

The section of this ride that I have only done once before was a little on the muddy side! In that it wasn't possible to see the asphalt at all, and it was somewhat slippery. Still - all good practise!

Once again on reaching the hilliest bit, my legs woke up and started to enjoy themselves. I'm going to have to persuade them that getting 'bored' on gently undulating terrain is not on!!
I'm getting to know that section quite well now, and it becomes easier to picture just how far is left to go.

I was quite pleased that I finished the ride strongly.

Distance: 65 miles
Time: 3:56:35

A decent time-in-saddle/distance ride :o)

Unfortunately he climbing session didn't happen - but instead we discussed some 'organising' that I could get on with this afternoon, which I have now done.....mostly. Just waiting on a couple of 'phone calls.
Looks like we may be popping to the Lakes for a flying visit quite soon!! :o)

Sunday, 13 February 2011

3 Passes....

After a really cracking day yesterday, the plan was to do a little figure of 8 circuit out of Keswick, taking in Honister, Newlands and Whinlatter Passes - then after the descent of Whinlatter, head back up to Buttermere and redo Newlands before heading back to Keswick.
The forecast had accurately predicted some Cumbrian Sunshine and a gentle breeze, so we knew we were going to get a little bit damp, and slightly blown about!
Lorna was running the Keswick/Buttermere 34k, so we headed to registration in the Cricket Pavilion just before 10, and we met up with P who was coming cycling with me, and A who was also running the race!

We set off at 10 in fairly persistent 'sunshine' and something of a head-breeze that was clearly going to be slightly more robust higher up!  As we rode along the side of Derwentwater, P told me that he wasn't confident about the climbs on the bike he'd brought and that if he had to walk I should carry on.  That wasn't going to happen though ;o)
We caught up with 3 Mountain-bikers at the foot of Honister, exchanged a few pleasantaries, and I started up!
If you know the Pass from the East, you'll know that it is straight in to 25% gradient through the first couple of bends, until you emerge from the trees.  I was slightly surprised to find myself not working that hard, but leaving the MTB'ers in my wake.  I decided to carry on until the gradient eased and wait there.  This was a very encouraging start!

On the easier section we chatted and I was admonished for not riding on (not happening, mate!!)  The top section again gets slightly steeper and the descent starts again at 25% on a rippled, worn and (today) wet surface.  It was OK though!  Once that section was negotiated safely the lower part of the descent is just loads of fun.  Good visibility, no tricks, and a chance to let it fly!!
Newlands is a nice climb too - a 20% start which is reasonably short then it eases right off before steepening to the last corner which is the steepest bit.  We also have a tail-wind, so this was just fantastic to ride.

P found his steed a little troublesome on the steeper sections again, but we made pretty good progress.  The view of the huge volume of water coming off the hill at Moss Force was outstanding.  We stopped to have a good look before heading down towards Braithwaite.  This is another fabulous section of road.  The fist bit is slightly steep, but after that you have the best part of 5 miles heading (mostly) downhill.  Awesome.

I'd not climbed Whinlatter from this direction before, but it really is the baby of them all.  No need for little gears on the 15% gradient.  Part way up we were passed by a couple of lads who I recognised.  We'd seen them descending Honister when we were climbing - so they weren't hanging about!
When I had planned today, I'd factored in the fact that I've done a lot more cycling than P, and although I was still aiming to head down to Lorton and back to Buttermere, I'd also contemplated simply heading down from here.  But there was much enthusiasm for the Whintatter descent - Buttermere - Newlands option.  So we did that!

There was a bit of a headwind on the undulating ride back to Buttermere, and the road was clearly far less used.  That seems a shame, because Crummock Water is absolutely stunning.
The race marshals were out in force at the water station at Buttermere, and told us that "about 40" had gone through already of the 70-odd starters.

I did some calculations and thought that if Lorna was having a good run, she'd have been through already.
P headed off up the first part of the climb while I was still chatting to a Marshal, and I thought that I'd see how I got on climbing it in 42:28 (or 24).

Fine, as it happens.  
I decided to power up the last bit just to see what it was like, then descended back down to do that steepest section again.  I really was enjoying myself!

On the descent we passed A who was having a good run - but not seeing Lorna meant that either she was having a bad one, or she'd decided not to run at all I surmised. 
We saw another couple of folk we knew (Hi, Andy!) as we headed back to Keswick, and we headed straight back the cars to put the bikes away.
I saw Lorna's Kamleika hanging on the back of the seat just before I spotted her heading to the car.  So I was able to shelve the idea of heading back out on to the course to find her.  And then I saw her text which told me that she'd pulled out and would meet me at the finish!  :o)

It was an excellent ride, which I really enjoyed.  I'm very happy with my climbing legs, so I just need to make sure my endurance legs are nice and strong!  I'm getting happier with my descending although I may have to look at my brakes - unless that was just the wet and crud that made them slightly less secure than I would have liked (Couldn't make the rear lock no matter how hard I tried!)

Good day!!

The route and stuff is HERE

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Quality days with your spouse

Sometimes you just have to do certain things.
Like - when there is good weather in the Lakes and you want to go for cycle ride with the wife rather than Do Some Training :o)

When we were here in November we did a really nice ride on our Mountain Bikes.  Entirely appropriate on the roads given the weather and the state of the roads which almost had more Fell on them than the Fells did ;o)
But this time we had our road bikes, and simply gorgeous weather.  Warm and sunny with a light cooling breeze..... :o)

I like planning routes that avoid the busier roads, and here in the Lakes it is always a good plan.  It is impossible to completely avoid them, of course, but you can still find some absolute pearls if you are imaginative enough.
This particular route I can see becoming one that we do regularly when we are cycling.  It's a nice distance and there is a superb Tea Room that deserves plenty of patronage because of its fantastic welcome and service, and food that is astonishingly good quality at a price that is (IMO) ridiculously good value!
We will visit Mae's Tea Rooms in Uldale whenever we are up this way.  And although it's a little off the beaten track - it's well worth a visit!

Anyway - the ride itself.
We set off from Keswick having been fed to the hilt by the lovely Pauline, who has been our regular host since we discovered her little B&B a few years ago.  She clearly thinks that we don't eat enough and makes it her mission to give us at least a months worth of fantastic food every time we draw breath ;o)
We headed past Castlerigg Stone Circle to Thelkeld along the back roads, and then after a teeny bit of A66 headed into the hills from Scales.  We happened across Grandad Grockle in his JAAAAAAG (you have to imagine Jeremy Clarkson saying that) who was driving slower than we were riding - and on this uphill section we were averaging 8mph!!!!! 
We passed through Mungrisdale and Mosedale and headed up to Caldbeck, and from there to Uldale for a planned break, cuppatea and some high quality homemeade nosh!

They also has some magnificent artwork and photography which is for sale - and a multifuel burner which will defrost the coldest of cyclists :o)

Adequately refreshed, and with a little tweaking of Lorna's bike gearing, we headed down towards Bassenthwaite so that we could ride past Ling and Sale Fells towards Buttermere and up Whinlatter Pass from the West.
That climb is just really enjoyable - helped on no small part by the fact that the views up towards Buttermere were spectacular and the riding was not particularly taxing!

The descent gave out forearms a bit of a work out, and we discovered that the bridge at Little Braithwaite had been rebuilt since we were last here, so we got to ride the tiny road past Ullock this time.  Nice!

The entire route was 44 miles and we took 4:06 and it included 1150m of ascent and descent.

More importantly, it was a wonderful day out with my wife.  REALLY enjoyed that!

Here is the route

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Hill Work - NOT by Stealth!!

The plan was to get a reasonably early start and head over to Church Stretton so that I could do some 'hill reps' over Long Mynd.
I'd discovered that the climb up The Burway was included in the 100 Greatest Cycling Climbs book, and when I looked at the map, I also found that there was another decent climb on the other side of the hill which was steeper for longer, but shorter overall.
And the base of the Burway to the base of this climb over the Mynd was a few pennies over 5 miles in distance.

A plan started to form.......

My initial idea was to park at the top of the Burway, ride down and back up again 6 times - but thinking that it might get a bit tedious I decided to link the two climbs as they are on the same road - and climb them both 3 times.
This gave me a nice section in the middle which, although not entirely flat, gave my legs something else to do - and gave me a chance to practise cycling on bumpy narrow hilly roads.  Nice and event-specific :o)

I still parked at the top of the Burway, and decided to head to the 'other' climb first to warm up the legs.  

I'd forgotten how steep 25% is in descent - and was VERY cautious the first time.  Glad I've been climbing a lot though..... you need pretty robust forearms to maintain control!!
The first climb was great!  Slow!  But just a case of pedaling it out and not falling off.

[note to self - wet grass in the centre of the road doesn't give you any traction when you are climbing 1:4!!]
I met my first car on this section, which is only just wide enough for..... one car.  But I negotiated the restart and clipping back in fine!!!
The meat of that climb is 160m of uppage in about 690m of horizontal distance - and when it eases off it still climbs for another mile - just much more gently.  And I had expected a tail wind from the forecast.
There wasn't one - so I was climbing into the wind on the exposed ridge of the Mynd :o)

The descent down the Burway was much less scary!  There is better visibility (apart from when you are in the cloudbase, which came and went all morning) and although it's easy enough to get to 35mph, for the most part it is also pretty easy to control your descent.
I realised just how much easier this climb was by the fact that bottom gear wasn't actually necessary, and once the steeper section was done, the rest of the climb could be done comfortably on the middle chainring.
Yes - I have a triple!!!  I could start hurling testosterone about and use a compact or a standard double - but I'm not doing Fred Whitton just once - so I need to be able to treat my legs with some respect!!!

I really enjoyed that climb.  the 100 Climbs book gives it a 9/10, and for the views down into Cardingmill Valley alone I have to agree.  The drop off to the right is very severe though.  Not one to fall off!!

And so it continued.... I became more confident with my bike handling on the descents as the session went on - although it DID give my forearms a decent workout!
The cloudbase hugged the top of the Mynd for most of the time, and there was one surreal moment where, having climbed past a Mountainbiker, I happened across a number of mountain ponies and their foals who had chosen the road to stop for a quick cuppa!  I was a little wary of the the Boss Pony who squared up to me at one point, but I gave them plenty of space and was able to carry on my merry way!

All in all this was a good workout.  I confirmed to myself that I climb pretty well, and I'm improving at descending.  The bumpy roads might need a slightly lower tyre pressure though!!

Here is todays session

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Hill Work By Stealth!

The weather forecast presented me with a great opportunity today.
Riding the Scotty Dog route in reverse would give me a greater proportion of uphill miles (less gradient but longer) and all of the 'easy' flat and downhill sections would be into a 16km/h wind.
I also had time to add in a little extra loop to make the miles up.

It was another very nice morning.  One thing I hadn't factored in was the fact that I would be passing more schools at "Little Johnny can't walk 400m to school" time so it was very busy until I got out of town.  But after that it was great - really quiet.

And I achieved what I set out to do - simulated climbing for the majority of the ride

One thing that I DID notice was that my left hand got a little nerve-numbness at times.  My gloves are pretty old now and a bit threadbare, and I've been thinking for a while that my bar tape could do with being replaced.  So a couple of little jobs.

The ride today was a little over 47 miles and took just under 3 hours.
I'm thinking that as a training pace on *this* terrain, 50 miles in <3 hours would be a reasonable goal over the coming weeks.  I know that it is fairly meaningless in terms of what I'll be able to do over the Fred Whitton course - but it is a reasonable one for me to measure myself against, I think!

I think that tomorrow I'll have a change and head over to some steeper hills and bat up and down them a few times.

Tuesday, 8 February 2011


People may have noticed a small amount of breeziness about the place over the last few days.  That, combined with a fairly busy weekend which involved loads of indoor climbing and being sociable, meant that the bike stayed firmly on the Turbo Trainer, and got some serious servicing!  And I'm actually pretty sure that the overall strength conditioning that climbing gives me is beneficial to all the other activities that I like to do!!

Anyway - this morning saw a return to some lovely bright and clear weather and hardly any wind.  Some, but nothing like that which has been whipping around the place for the last week or so!  I planned to do a route that is a little longer than my 'standard' 42 mile circuit, but that was scuppered when one of the kids missed the bus to school.
Ah well!  Still had time to get the 42 done!  So I decided to up the effort level a little.

I knew that the direction that I was doing it in would see me heading in to the wind on the flatter and slightly downhill section - but that pretty much fitted the "Work A Bit Harder" plan.  And it was a really nice day to be out riding.  Even the traffic was behaving itself!  I'm happy doing this particular ride (clockwise) in 2:30 or less.  When it takes longer it's normally because the wind is whistling across the flat bits, and not in a helpful way!!  There are a few places where it funnels straight at you, and with more than the prevailing force.  Still, I guess it's hill-work by stealth ;o)

I had a chat with the lovely people at Macmillan Cancer Support too.  They have kindly put a bit of information about the challenge on their website, and I needed to chat to them about another matter as well.  They are a fabulous group at the local fundraising office - really friendly and helpful :o)

A friend of mine from the 'running' side of my life had heard about the challenge and has pledged to sponsor me €10 (she's from mainland Europe!) for each time that I manage to cycle up the section of Hardknott Pass that has a gradient of 33%  (1:3 in old money) - now THERE is a motivating challenge!  
I wonder if she also means when I'm doing a training rides on it.....  ;o)

Hoping to get up there soon to recce the sections of the route that I haven't ridden before, and I will do the whole route as a training ride before May as well!

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Longer ride... and loose plans

I need to start building up the long rides in preparation for this challenge, and for the moment I'm planning to stick in one decent long ride a week, pad out the rest of the week with 40-50 mile efforts, and have one day when I seek out some silly steep hills and do lots of repeats on them to get used to, and strong enough for the climbs on the Fred Whitton.

I can't really mimic the gradient locally, so I'll use bigger gears on the climbs that I do use.
I had a look at the forecast for the next couple of days, and it seemed to me that the best window of half decent weather was going to be today.  So I had a play with my mapping software and came up with an 86 mile route that seemed to fit the bill.  It was also going to be a good opportunity to work at the food/drink strategy.

I had previously thought that I would have a quick off-bike 5 minute break ever 20 miles - but that translates to 25 minutes of not riding on the Fred Whitton.  So today I thought I'd seee how I went with a 40-mile stint between rests.
I knew that it meant that I'd possibly stop quite close to the end, but these things need experimenting with!!

Once again the roads were really mucky - some were more mud than tarmac!  But as a whole this was a fantastic ride.  There were a few more easy climbs than on the 70 mile route I did the other day, and the hilliest bit was from 55-70 miles - and again my legs seemed to perk right up then!
So - a planned 5 minute break for food and wee stop at 40 miles.  Found a lovely little sun-trap for it, and it WAS nice to get off the bike, albeit briefly.  Coming to a village at 77 miles, I had been thinking that I'd just ride through..... but I was actually getting stomach-knawingly hungry, so decided that I would stop there as well.  I'd also been riding into the wind for the past 6 miles!!
It was a good decision!

Overall I was really pleased with the way this went.  It's the longest ride that I've done in a long time, and I got the pace/effort about right, because there was still some oompfh left in my legs even though they were a little fatigued.  One thing that I may have to look at.... I was feeling slightly cramped on the bike, especially cycling into the wind, so I may put a slightly longer stem on.
All in all - an excellent day.

86.5 miles in 5:43

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Terrible wind..!!

Same route as yesterday!

For the first 6 miles I was thinking "This is impressive - averaging 19mph uphill..."  i should have known better.

Nope I wasn't "Riding like a Lion" - more like a very small kitten with LOTS of assistance

Turning IN to the wind brought me back to earth :o)

When the "Ear Thunder" suggests that you are doing at least 35 mph, and the cycle computer tells you that it's actually 14mph - you know that you are in for a bit of work!!
With my 'general' rides though, I'm riding to perceived effort, so a headwind just translates to smaller gears and lower speeds.

This was in fact, another very enjoyable ride.  A little slower than yesterday, but the training is all about getting the miles in, at the moment.

And then Lorna and I went to climb ourselves to arm-oblivion.  Great day :o)

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Some proper riding

The roads are pretty mucky at the moment.  With farmers doing farmer'y things and seemingly loads of things requiring large lorries driving on mud then back onto the roads - I found myself regretting having removed my bikes winter garb, because it got ridiculously dirty.

I had another fiddle with my riding position too.

Today I decided to potter around the Scotty Dog 42.  My plan was to just use easy effort and see what happened.

The start of the ride was wet and mucky - spray off the vehicles overtaking me was particularly muddy and gritty.  And I got absolutely filthy!!
But about half way around, that all changed.  The sun came out, and it was gorgeous.  I almost regretted having limited time for todays ride....... but climbing with my wife is just as important!!

I was really surprised that I finished the route in 1:24, the fastest I've ridden it by about a minute, and with far less effort.

Enjoyed that!!