Wednesday, 19 December 2007

In bed for nearly 24 hours now

and to be honest I'm quite bored...

Monday, 17 December 2007

Cold and miserable

Last weekend I missed out on what looks to have been a proper good hoot, the magazines xmas party followed by then Dr's housewarming, interspersed with riding my favourite trails :(

My works xmas do was good fun but then I came down with the cold/chest infection that has been lurking in my body for weeks now, perfect timing for xmas :(

So, a weekend with no bikes, no partying and mostly bloody miserable, only highlight was spending time practiscing photographing birds in flight, managed to get a few decent shots of the swans..

This forthcoming week looks like yet another bikeingless week unless I get a miracle cure, this mornings commute was a chore and an exercise in not being sick or wobbling into the path of the juggernauts !

bah humbug :(((

Thursday, 13 December 2007

Cold blue skies

my favourite..

todays early morning breakfast ride didnt happen as I had to get into work early, however tomorrow is a different story, these ace weather conditions are predicted to continue so will try to make the most of it.

So far this week has just been out and back affairs, 2 colleagues from work fell on the ice this morning, both hurt themselves, the boss damaged his helmet, be careful out there kids :-)

Monday, 10 December 2007

Its Monday and already

I can see this being a fairly bikeless week, despite my promises to ride a cross race and ride next weekend I'd forgotten that I'm on call all week :-(

so, the best I can really hope for is a few night rides later this week then 2 river runs at the weekend, bugger !

tomorrow I have to take the car to work, I'm in a meeting 15 miles away, would have been perfect to commute to and from but I have taxi duties to perform early in the evening for the girls, bugger !, hopefully I'll get back in reasonable time and if this fantastic weather (bloody weather) continues I'll try and get out tomorrow night

but when I think back I cant actually remember the last time I drove to work, so thats a good thing really, shame its not being reflected in my sore slow legs

tonights beer choice is varied, Brakespears Organic IPA, Innis and Gunn traditional (still not found the rum barreled version) Kronenburg 1664 white and a Brakespear special 7.6%...

headache expected tomorrow morning :-)

Sunday, 9 December 2007

Uphill hurts

Needless to say that the planned weekend of riding didnt happen, Saturday was a filthy day, horizontal rain and as windy as curry morning, spent the day at Martin Mere practicsing focussing on moving birds.

Sunday dawned a lot better, and thanks to the prompting of friends (and reading an interview with Sean Yates in Rouluer magazine that Biff does the fantastic design on)I made my way over to the valley to Matts, happily to be greeted with tea and toast and smiley people, the usual start up Jack bridge had me reeling with light headedness, I have a real love hate affair with this climb, sometimes I can fly up it, today it was a painful reminder of my last two weeks inactivity, at one point I had to stop and concentrate on keeping my breakfast down, I walked for a few minutes before feeling well enough to continue :-(

By the time we topped out I was feeling better, my legs were now inclined to go in smooth circles, we picked up Ed and continued on for an (in my case) up slowly and down slowly day, I was taking things very easily on both ways.

3 hours of this and we then headed back to Matts for fantastic soup with crusty bread, then off to Mooch for coffee, home early and a power nap whilst watching Star Wars, sleepy again now,

Happy to be a bikie again this week :-)

Wednesday, 5 December 2007

Fixie inc

Nothing of note today, straight there and back on the TinRat.

However, Bill had his Bob Jackson track bike convert in work today, cant believe he's had it all these years and its the first time I'd seen it, probably because it was on velodrome duty exclusively before, anyway he;s put a carbon fork and a front brake on it and its blooming lovely, campag cranks and those of so exquisite large flange campag track hubs that make you go weak at the knees...

next week will be fixie week....

must resist looking at Indy Fab track bikes :-)

Monday, 3 December 2007

December again already

No riding last weekend still have a chest lurgy lingering, bloody thing just will not come out though, as a result of feeling generally under the weather and tired all over I couldn't summon up any energy to ride a bike, combined with truly appalling weather and I didnt even try to convince myself otherwise.

Last week totaled about 60 miles, this week looks to be even lower, today was a straight out and back affair, 9 miles in the wind and rain, at least I still rode, it would have been so easy to take the car....

Anyway, on a brighter note this forthcoming weekend has a plan, Saturday I'm going to explore at Delamere regardless of the weather, intention is to do a big day there and ride every trail I know, there's a good solid 4 hours there if you know where to go.

Sunday is unclear as yet, it'll probably be over in the valley with Dave, Sharon, Dave, Simon, Piers, Matt and Tanya, of course they dont yet know this :-)

It'll get posted on Cheeky, we'll see who takes up the mantle !

Thursday, 29 November 2007

Its a washout

this week that is...

Very very bored of the rain right now, so bored that I had to do something creative yesterday

Monday to Wednesday was straight out and back on the road, I knew that the trails would be awash and no fun, but today was different, a poor start to the day gave way to some blue sky and at around 3ish I got a ten minute window to get out before I got embroiled in something else.

Taking a chance and getting changed into riding clothes in my office I was lucky that no one came past to see my naked athleticism !

The trails were still wet and muddy but it felt good to feel some sun on my face, the cloying greyness had been getting me down, anyhow, an hour later and I'm home and happy, happy enough to contemplate going and buying a dinner suit for a forthcoming night out, it was fairly painless, suit, shirt, bow tie and new shoes (stiff black shoes dont half feel funny on your feet) all done, should see me out for the rest of my life :-)

Saturday, 24 November 2007

looking out the window with a heavy heart

its absolutley pissing down, thick heavy wet rain swirling around, totally uninviting ;-(

anyhows, Thursday was officially the best day of the week, ride to work and back followed by a great night ride arond Delamere with the good guys, my Spot was just the same as it was last time I rode it (which was over a year ago) and it ruled, that bike allows me brief moments when I remember how to ride a bike, sliding predictably in the mud, steering exactly where I want to go, its a great bike that derves to be repaired (there's a small crack appearing in the weld on the bottom bracket shell/seat tube interface).

can probably count Thursday as a 25 miler.

Friday was a straight down the road effort to get to work and in complete cotrast to Thursday the sun came out so yet another window of opportunity arrived and I hit the trail, only this time my legs were not in the mood, so rather than push through I bailed and headed home to pick up my camera gear and legged it over to Martin Mere to photograph the swans.

It was bloody perishing in the hides but some of the shots worked out okay.

Weeks total is around the 70 miles, less than needed but still the fun is back in bike riding.

Wednesday, 21 November 2007

riding the lethargy away

this morning I suffered from rainy day blues, made the mistake of looking out of the window and saw rain, rain and more rain, so headed to work the shortest way knowing that my expected afternoon of riding had just been washed away, bit of a hectic day at work, and then got a phone call from Germany early afternoon that raised my blood pressure through the roof, in fact so high that I left early at 3 so I didnt have to deal with anyone in that mood.

Managed to put all that aside and decided to head over to the shak to catch up with Mikey, whilst there was looking at the Trek 08 bikes that they had in stock, have to admit that the Fuel series looks really good, some clever thngs going on with the pivot points and the general finish and look of the bikes makes them stand out, and the price point is unbelievable, for £1600 you can get a bike that will massively out perform a bike from ten years ago that would have cost you £4000.

And I also bought some Endura winter waterproof gloves, nice and toasty inners with a good looking protective outer which isnt too bulky, riding home it appears that the palm pad bunches up a bit in your palm but not too uncomfortable, we'll see how they go on.

After leaving the shak where Mikey agreed to a ride this coming Sunday (which when I think about it may well be the first ride we've done together in 2007 !) I decided to head off home through the lanes, and after about 30 mins my legs suddenly came to life, at first I thought the wind had changed direction, but no, they must have just decided to get stuck in ;-)

An hour later and I'm home and happy, on me way to sainsbury's and I'm getting texts from Punkass suggesting which beer to buy for tonight, settled on Pumpkin Ale and a strong Brakespear organic.

First few mouthfuls of the pumpkin and it tastes good, a bit like pumpkins oddly enough

and best of all, Germany is forgotten about for now.

18 miles today

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Tuesday bloody Tuesday

to the tune of a famous song by offically the most boring band in the world, just read a joke about the frontman clapping

anyhow, road ride either side today, the shortest way, tired and feeling below parr today, but have booked the afternoon off tomorrow to get out and get some miles in, BUT this damned rain is still falling, if its still raining the trals will be shocking, so a change of plan might be in order, Delamere and back on the road, 60 odd miles will get me back on track this week.

Looking forward now to Thursday's night ride, its the annual Sideways Cycles/Bike Shak xmas spectacular, I've been down in the cellar tonight and rebuilt the Spot 29er (as that it officially my Delamere bike with 34 x 20 gearing, thinish tyres and mudguards fitted as standard).

When I think about it, it must be over 6 months since I last rode in the forest which is ridiculous as its one of my favourite places to ride, in fact it might even have been an exploratory ride with Stever, we rode to a new place, expecting to climb, should get that gig back on really, after all I bought the shoes !

No idea about the weekends shenanigans yet, possiblity of a party over at Hebden but I'm doubtful for that, Sunday should really be a big road ride, I did say that I'd rejoin the old roady club and get out with the old boys, that's certainley get the weight shifted and the miles would pile on, shame I've not around to that really :-(

Another alternative is to get the cross bike out and do a mixed ride, in fact Delamere on the road, couple of laps of the forest trails dodging the walkers and dogs and then back on the road would be a good plan

then again if the local trails are in good enough nick I could scope out the skull and crosbikes race course ?

so many options, so little time :-)

Monday, 19 November 2007

Plan A almost worked

Saturday went as predicted..

Sunday started as predicted nut due to sub zero temperatures the mediumish epic turned into epic light (but nonetheless still epic), it were totally ace, great friends, great trails, great beer, great chilli and yorkshires in the bay horse pub, most remarkable of all though was that we were out riding by 1030 and had finished at 130, into the pub to thaw out.

the usual plus, sleet, snow, VERY wet trails, piss poor brake pad life (as always with avids in the wet), cold toes, cold fingers, VERY cold little Matty, it rocked :-)

Fitness and breathing ability all okay, legs felt fine on the climbs, lots left at the end, its working, Ed asked hows the Strathpuffe training going, to be honest it doesnt really count as training, its more just enjoying riding a bike, but yes its working.

Today was a write off, 4 road miles in for a 7am start, 4 road miles home for a 7pm finish, 1 beer, 1 bottle of red wine, maybe tomorrow I'll get out for a few mles more ?

Friday, 16 November 2007

A perfect storm

Funny old day today, 12 off road miles along the canal in the dark was a fun start, I got out at 630 and decided to head to work a different route, its been a while since I rode along the canal. Narrow muddy trails with the ever present chance of an early bath meant concentration was needed, especially as I came across a couple of black labrabears who lomed out of the darkness !.

Work started bad and got worse around 11ish when a friend handed me his notice, I knew it was coming but am still gutte


after that, a series of meetings which did nothing but remind me of how much I have fallen behind with my day to day work after the summer project....

A change of plan saw me leave at 430 on the Tinrat, just an hour of road work but manged to squeeze 17 miles out to take todays total to 29 miles.

That means 87 mles for the commutes this week, not too bad for a 3 day week, tomorrow is a rest day, plans are to go photographing birds at Inner marsh farm in the morning, get back in time to pick up Jan and then head off somewhere else for a stroll, probably Tatton Park to catch the Acer leaves before the disappear for the year.

Sunday promises wet and windy trails, a longish day in the saddle I hope.

Next week I'll stick t the Tinrat and aim to up the mileage to 150 for the week, we'll see how succesful that is :-)

Thursday, 15 November 2007

Tired Legs today

Managed to get out of bed early and hit the trail, by gum it were cold, easily minus 2 or 3, the trails were frosty firm, even the puddles were icey, 10 miles of this was enough for my hands, and even as I type this some 12 hours later my left index finger is still numb at the end, I figure something "might" be wrong as last time I played (ha ha ha ha a) my guitar I had this same feeling for weeks, maybe the red wine is finall catching me up ?

Anyhow, a boring day at work, sat at the computer all day meant I was tired and weary by the time the bell rang, and as I'd actually cleaned the VooDoo at lunch time and lubed the chain (hey that grinding noise has gone !) I decided just to head off home.

15 miles in the can today, maybe tomorrow will gve a few more miles and then its the weekend, saturdays plan is to go over to Old Moor RSPB site for some photography and then Sunday will be the uusual plus plus over at Oxenhope, starting early and finishing late :-)

Wednesday, 14 November 2007

Fired by the canon of inspiration (TM 360)

last weeks summary first, 100 miles comuting, 30 (proper off road in the hlls) miles at weekend at Tim and B's guest house in Rothbury (many thanks to Raoul for organising and Tim and B for great hospitality, you guys rock a phat one or something like that)

130 miles in 6 days of riding, pleased with that, its about as much as I can manage time wise at the moment, trying to not spread myself too thinly between family, work, bikes and photography


Back to this week and 2 days of business travel gave my legs a rest on Moday and Tuesday, so I was gagging for it today, once again all was well at work and a window of sunshine presented iself so I was out and amongst it again, trails were wet but still firm, the leaves are already turning to mush but the sun shone brightly, did some more exploring and came to a sudden realisation that we could put on a skull and crossbones cyclo cross bike race in the Manchester area.

I'll not say when and where as the whole idea is that you run the race somewhere cheeky and with no rules and regulations, there'll be start time and a finish time, although the finish time is usually left to the discretion of the hecklers, if they want to see more suffering then thats what they get :-).

Anyway, 44 mles today in the sun felt good at the time, an I even remebered to eat something before setting off !

Tomorrows commute is planned to be a fairly muted affair, I know I have 2 busy days at work coming on and my chest feels tonight as though the infection thats been nesting here for some time mght finally be coming on :-0

Thursday, 8 November 2007

nothing unusual

today that was, up early for a ten miler to work, I was thinking that I'll try and do this at least one way every day through the winter, work was rubbish and I didnt get out till 630 and by then there was a hurricane blowing so decided to just head home on the road, 15 miles for the day means a 100 for the week...

thats all ;-)

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

littel green frogs

lots of em tonight, had a job missing some of em, must have been the rain ?

anyhow, this morning I woke late and rushed to get out, still managed 10 miles of off road trails before work, uneventful day at work and out again by 5 into the rain, first choice was to just head home the shortest way but then I decided to retrace this mornings route. The trails were mushy, hard to believe that yesterday they were in perfect condition, anyhow, 10 miles later and I'm home, bike is filthy, clothes are filthy but there's that stupid grin on my face that says all is well tonight in my world :-)

Beer free night last night means tonight I'm having beer, Summer Swallow, and a curry (and some red wine also, alcohol free tomorrow nigts in readiness for the weekends shenanigans over at Tims place in Rothbury.

At the risk of it all going wrong there appears to be some life stirring back into my legs, I know that this will happen, just need to keep at it now !

This weeks total so far is 85 miles, hoping to do another 20 tomorrow, rest on Friday and then enjoy the weekends riding catching up with friends and generally mucking about on bikes :-)

Tuesday, 6 November 2007

a ribbon of goodness

Todays early morning commute set me up beautifully for the day, up and out by 6 for 10 miles of tacky trails in the emerging sun, got to work to find all was well and that I potentially had the afternoon free of meetings :-)

A couple of things to rearrange and I was back out in the sun at 1130, down the river along the singletrack river side trails (not real singletrack but the best thing around here), through Stockport and the trails just kept on getting better, sunlight flitting through the autumn leaves and reflecting off the water, trails dry and grippy, only downside was that the Jodphur Cafe was closed by the time I got there and the 2 pieces of toast I'd had earlier had already been turned into energy.

Oh well nothing for it but turn around and head back, had a bit of an explore around some rails I'd been eyeing up but never bothered to follow, nothing at all spectacular but nice and flowy.

By the time I got back to the water park I was seriously bonking hard, first time thats happened for years !, anyhow the upside was that the lakeside cafe was open, and double bonus it had a new owner who was trying to move away from the burger and chips type of place it was previously, a nice egg on toast and a grand cup of tea for 3 quid set me up a treat for the final 6 miles hom.

45 miles all off road today, legs are tingling right now but tomorrows weather looks good again so am planning another early morning trip.

Monday, 5 November 2007

be careful out there kids

road ride to work this morning, first ride since Friday as the weekend gave way to walking and photographing, still the 29er VooDoo was a pleasure to ride, the 34 x 16 gear is just about tall enough for the trails around here and as usual with this bike the 21lb weight made light work of the short climbs.

This evening came and went with a spin down the river, 18 miles in just over an hour felt good, along the way I thought that I saw my mate Jezz over on the other side of the iver walking with someone, od as he had his running gear on ?

I now know why he was walking, the silly bugger had tripped over a dog in the twilight and fell and bust his lip !, unfortunately it was bad enough to warrent a trip to hospitl and as I type he is having his lip stitched back together !!

Remember a few blogs ago when I asked why people run at night without lights ?, well now I know, its because they are stoopid thats why :-)

oh and BTW Simon, tonight I am having beer, 4 nights of sobriety is enough for anyone :-)

and here's to a great Northumberfest 6

Friday, 2 November 2007


Well I managed to hit my mental target this week of 100 mental ( i;e in my head based on past rides with a bike computer thingy) miles commuting, a mix of off and on road..

tonights ride had the extra thrill of dodging the local kids who were gathering to let fireworks off and have fun, not sure who was more intimidated me or them, 50 watts of light probably does look quite daunting :-)

here's this weeks list

Monday - 4 on 17 on road
Tuesday - 4 0n 17 off road
Wednesday - 5 off 12 off
Thursday - 13 off 15 off
Friday - 5 off 18 off

110 miles and aiming for another 70 this weekend

Punkass asked me last night if I'm getting any fitter, well I guess the answer is yes but it doesnt feel like it yet, I know from long experience that another 3 or 4 weeks of similar and it'll come ;-)

and then it gets tough :-0

oh and by the way I jumped on the scales last night - 17 stone 4 lbs, my all time heaviest ever :-/

Wednesday, 31 October 2007


I forgot until about 5 oclock that it was halloween, no problem just added an extra bit of frisson to riding on your own in the dark, I think I may have discovered the getting fit secret, ride solo off road at night, you automatically ride about 4mph faster than you would normally and end up doing a fartlek sesion every time you hear a noise !

another hour tonight means I'm at about 65 miles since Monday, its a start as I keep telling myself :-)

no stray animals tonight just wet trails, in fact very few darkness joggers either (how do they do that running in the dark thing ?)

tomorrows plan is to get up at 6 and do a river run, hopefully 20 miles before getting to work, then swap bikes again and a roady ride on the way home, idea being to tire myself out so the first night alcohol free will be shortened by sleep :-)

and in honour of the occasion tonights final choice is Wychwood pumkin alle, wychwood honey'd ale and a bottle of chateu neuf de pape, a suitable end to a couple of months of liver abuse ;-)

couldnt see the Innis and Gun stuff :-(

Tuesday, 30 October 2007


The morning ride didnt happen but tonight I took the long way home on the Ratbred, 17 miles along dark country lanes and nearly T boned a fox that ran out right in front of me, I think we both jumped out of our skin !

I'm liking the fact that I am keeping a mountainbike and a raod bike in my office so that I have a choice every day of either a road ride or a mountainbike ride depending upon my mood....

I especially like to see the look on peoples faces when they come into my office and see 2 bikes lined up and ready to rock and ridng clothes drying out on the radiator, the Germans today were excited to see a muddy (last nights mud) mountain bike and wanted to know all about it :-)

Tomorrows plan is to ride into work and then do a longer night ride, the weather forecast looks good so I've packed bigger longer lasting lights for the ride.

Tonights beer choice was a pink belgian, a leffe and some red wine, tomorrows choice will be Innis and Gun rum soaked aleand a good bottle of red to finish up with.

Monday, 29 October 2007

well possenger !

So, last weeks plan didnt go quite as perfectly as I'd hoped, the chest infection/lung collapse/man flu stuff kept me off my bike for the rest of the week after Tuesdays ride but I was cool with that because Cornwall was all over good and I still managed to get out for walks along the cliff tops with my camera (even saw some quite good birds, hen harrier, turnstone, lots of gulls)

All in all a relaxing week, just what was needed.

And back to realty this morning, road ride into work on the Ratbred (must take a photo soon) was uneventful and my Cove Stiffee was waiting patiently when I got there, lunch time saw the rain come down but as I was determined to get out along the river this evening I fitted some mudguards (and despite what people say they are really practical for keeping you clean, clean enough that todays 3/4s will still be wearable tomorrow) pumped up the tyres and fitted my riding lights.

5 oclock came and I was out, the trails are dark already but not too wet (yet) and even though there was a light drizzle it was still a real pleasure to be out on my first nght ride of the season, the air smelt of autumn, the leaves were covering the trails and best of all no one around.

10 miles later and the rain turned into a heavy down pour so I turned for home happy with my lot, and happy that I had a big enough big on my back to carry the selection of belgium beer I picked up, my friend Raoul would be happy with the image of me on a bike with a bag full of begium beer :-)

and on another positive note I have 2 more nights of alcohol before a self imposed month of abstinance which should lead me nicely into my weight loss/fitness program in time for the Strathpuffer (I'm still hopeful of getting there should some other plans alter)

Tomorrows plan is to ride along the river into work, retracing tonights route, lights are charging as we speak :-)

Tuesday, 23 October 2007

turnin circles

slowly but still turning, the hills around here are bloody steep ( I might have mentioned this before) and quite long compared to local roads, one in particular dropping down to Mousehole (which is apparentley called muzzle or something ) was about 400 yards long and as I know now is 1 in 4 in places. As I dropped in I thought I'd challenge myself to riding back up it, which I did, just, it bloody hurt and hasnt helped my sore lungs as more cold air was breathed in deeply :-0

and my legs are sore from the effort (which is a good thing), cant wait for the weight to drop off and I'll be flying up these things !!

Anyho, another 20 miles got ticked off riding from Lamorna to Marazion and back, nice quiet lanes and not too busy roads finished off with a nice bike trail, lots of climbs all into the wind but my legs are starting to feel some life coming back.

Will take tomorrow off and then aim for a bigger (50 miles plus) ride on Thursday, looking at maps tonight and planning :-)

Sunday, 21 October 2007

Yay for me

20 mile road ride doesnt sound like much but in my condition and given that the hills around here are bloody steep I'm pleased with my day today, he tinbred rides well and I'm pleased that I opted for the compact chinset with its 34/26 tooth combination.

My chest is sore and tight through breathing cold air very deeply but that'll soon be gone, plus I ticked a box today, I rode to Lands End (which by the way is a shithole thanks to Peter DeSaverry IIRC) which is one of the things I put down to do this year, need to head to John OGroats next.

And on a high note my mind is wandering and wondering about doing daft things on a bike again, it'll just be like the old days !

Friday, 19 October 2007

a weight off my shoulders

Despite the best efforts of our oil supplier to scupper my holiday plans the lads at work have pulled out all the stops and I left work this evening feeling relieved and happy :-)

so, this weks riding has been almost zero due to reasons as stated above, but next week will see me out on the bike and having fun, I'm decided on the roadified Tinbred, it rides a treat now I have tweaked the position, the Kojak tyres are faster than normal 700c road tyres or so it seems, the compact chainset works a treat with an old school LX front mech and a cheap and cheerful Tiagra rear mech, deore V brakes feel better than they have any right to and overall Steve at the Bike Shak has done a sterling build up for me.

As an aside I always used to build my own bikes, ts rael pleasure to do this but just dont have the time these days, sounds pretty lame ass I'd agree but that time now needs to be put ito the family and other things, best part though is that both Leon and now Steve re great mechanics and I'm more than happy to have them build a bike for me, combine them with Sideways Tim and its doubtful I'll ever build again, at least not until I end up working for one of them :-)

With a bt of luck I'll be posting positive stories next week as I explore the lanes around deepest darkest Cornwall.

Tuesday, 16 October 2007

this is turning into a not very funny thing

tomorrows plan has stalled, work stuff has got in the way and I wont be riding in Wales as planned, I could carry on and take the day off but that would be leaving a big pile of crap for someone else to pick up and thats not fair....

So, plan Y , drive to work, leave mid afternoon, pick up the Tinbred buld, drive home, ride back to work, sort out crap, ride home the lon way giving the Tinbred a shake down ride ready for next week

Next week will be mobile phone free and riding every day even if its pissing down.

today was a straight there and back affair, nothing to say

Next year I need to hatch some plans, the West Highland way with Sara is on the cards, a week in either Verbier or Santa Cruz doing something epic, no racing other than SS stuff (and I never race at those events anway) and hopefully a family break in Napa Valley for the SS worlds

Need some more suggestions, need more time

Monday, 15 October 2007

the long way home

today I managed an hour of cycling, thats a goodish start to the week, legs felt strong and I had a go on the one hill en route, only 20 seconds of leg burn before enough to get that sick feeling ;-0

its a start.....

tomorrow will attempt to get up at 6 and go the longer way into work and then change bikes and have a river run on the way home, Weds looks like a trip out to ByC, its slowly starting to fall into place

Just tghe one hiccup, Strathpuffer is off for me now as I fogot to check with Jan and she's already arranged a weekend away and considering the number of wekends I get away with I can hardly complain (esp as she'll be reading this !)

Thursday, 11 October 2007

1 and 1 half hours

thats todays ride time

thats all

Wednesday, 10 October 2007

feeling like an old man ?

I was this morning, went the long way to work (only 8 miles or so) but my legs refused to go round in an orderley fashion, got to work and got to discussing the weekend, all the others are in a similar state, some worse than me, we are all over 40 now and for the most part out of shape, we reckoned that the 5 and a half hour walk on Saturday was thde equivalent of 5 and a half hours on a stepping machine so really its no surprise that we are all walking like old men !

Anyhow.... the ride home was easier apart from having a strange pain in my left thigh muscle ?, started off down the river but the trails were wet through from yesterdays deluge, combined with my sore legs I bailed out after 40 mins and headed off home, still it does count as circles turned in my attempt get fitter.

Decided the raceguarded Jake will be my weapon of choice tomorrow, the weather report doesnt look too promising so road mles will be good :-)

And ending on a high note, Mikey tells me that the area where we are holidaying next week is great for road riding, lots of hills and great views, thats made my mind up to take the newly roaded Tinbred (which is due to be built next Weds at the Shak)

So the plan is to try and ride for a few hours every morning whilst the family are lounging around before the serious activity of looking for the perfect cream tea !

Monday, 8 October 2007

not riding a bike

really sucks, especially when you have a chest infection and your mates cant stop telling you how much fun they had on the trails...

back from Germany with a stinker, decided to go on the weekend anyway but sans bike, had a good time, some last vestige of fitness left meant I got to the top of Cadair Idris first but boy have I suffered with stiff legs ever since, its been a year since I last did a walk of this length, going up was fine but coming down hurt like hell

anyhow, 2 days of rest (plus lots of good food and beer) means that I'm ready to go and it starts tomorrow :-)

Tuesday, 2 October 2007

2 fast hours

surprised myself tonight by riding home along the river at a constant 16mph, 31 something miles in just under 2 hours, maybe it was the coffee I've been drinking all day :-)

more likely it was rested legs after yet another weekend lost to the double edge sword of family life and apathy combined with an excess of alcohol and food, things rareley go to plan but its fair to say I never saw that particular twist coming this last weekend.

Anyhow, I'm away to Germania tomorrow for a business trip, landing back on Thursday with just enough time to pack a bike and a bag and then it off to sunny Wales for a long weekend with the lads from work, plan is to ride Friday, walk Saturday, ride Sunday and Monday, get some hills in my legs and chill out.

On yet another change of plan the Tinbred has gone to the Shak for a rebuild, after a chat with Leon it will reappear as a fast commuter, compact chainset, close ratio block and mudguards, this will be my Monday to Friday bike from now on, enabling me to get the miles into my legs that will be needed for the Strathpuffer.

Just 3 months to go and I feel like I'm starting from scratch, which actually isnt that far from the truth but tonights ride tells me that there is something lingering in my legs to work on, a session on the dreaded step machine for an hour twice a week should also take the sting out of the inevitable pushin/walking up the hills which is traditionally where I do the real damage, one of the problems of getting old, I used to be able to run for 3 hous with no problem, these days a stiff walk is almost a guarentee of a calf muscle stretch ;-(

Thursday, 27 September 2007

it happened tonight

ok, only 20 odd miles but it was me on a bike riding offroad in the mud

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

sore throat inevitability

everyone at home has been ill so it was inevitable...

uneventful rides in and out of work, a day spent in meetings feeling ropey, nothing doing tonight..

this calls for desperate measures, or in my case a change of bike, the Jake the Snake cross bike has been returned to the quiver and the VooDoo Erzulie has been plucked from the cellar, a tyre change and some air pumped into the forks, lights fitted and a vague plan to go down the river on my own tomorrow night.

Friday will be bikeless and I'll do my once fortnightly drive into work taking clean clothes and stuff that will last me for the next 2 weks.

I'm away to Andy's after work to spend an evening learning about this here Mac thing, drinking beer and watching the Scott walker movie 30th century man, Saturdays plan is to get Andy out on his bike, we'll probably just head off up the hill to Gregs Hut and back, doesnt sound much but its a big old climb and gears will be required.

Witha bit of luck Simon will be there and Mr Mearns also I hope.

There's no chance of hitting 100 miles this week and next week I'm travelling to Germany, however there is a light at the end of..

4 days away in Wales with work mates and we are planning 3 days of riding and a long walk up Cadir Idris, should be calorie neutral after all the food and beer that will be inhaled.

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

another day lost to apathy

Kev lad ducked out on tonights ride due to getting a cold overnight, as soon as I saw him turn up at work in his civvies I knew I wouldnt be riding tonight ;-(

I did ride in the long way but the rain stayed all day, and the wind changed direction so that it was blowing me home, therefore it would be against me on the way out to the lanes, and a busy day sat in meetings all day meant that there was no chance of visiting the gym at lunch ime so the only thing left was to return home the long way.

Note - SKS raceguards do officially rock, they work really well, someones put some serious thought into these, easy to fit and effective.

On the good side though I did get home early enough to get to the music shop and pick up a nice 2nd hand acoustic guitar and more beer and wine :-)

Tomorrow nights night ride has already stalled due to Dave coming down with a cold also, so there's only one thing to do, a solo night ride down the river dodging the junkies and the doggers, oh joy and rapture :-/

Monday, 24 September 2007

it was a wet and windy day...

well, it was this morning, semi long (ish) way to work in the wind and rain, only 8 miles but that was enough, very few cars on the road at 0630hrs today, got to work with heavy legs despite not doing anything even resembling exercise all weekend,very uneventful.

Ride home was even more boring, no inspiration to ride anywhere other than home, 6 miles was all, 2 bottles of beer and a bottle of red purchased, tonight will be a relaxing evening doing nothing, mindful of my usual obsessivness when it comes to training, this time will be chilled and relaxed, no worrying abut dropping weight even though I know thats how to increase my fitness, the Strathpuffer will be so cold that some extra lard can only help ( I figure ?)

Have arranged an after work road ride tomorrow night, hopefully will get a good fast 40 miles in, must remember to fit race guards tonight.

Tinbred commuter build up is on hold for time being, money spent on this can be put to better use by buying an acoustic guitar, am determined to give it a better try this time around and between the Jake the Snake and the Langster theres plenty to be going on with for commuting.

Ordered a custom Timbuk 2 mesenger bag last night, T has my old one (and I hope she's using it) and I need one for this new laptop thing, with a bit of luck it'll also double up as a decent bag for carrying a small mount of camera gear when we go to Barcelona, be interested to see how much moola it costs with the dollar exchange rate right now, should work out at less than £100 I hope.

Friday, 21 September 2007

as predicted

as predicted

cock sucker in a BMW pulled out in front of me, found out that canti's really are shit, just manged to avoid him, he had to stop at the lights, I heard the doors lock as I pulled up on the drivers side, he had his face covered by his hand, I knocked on his window "you fooking cock sucker" says I "what" says he starting to move forward, "you nearly killed me back there" says I leaning into to him now, he puts foot down and nearly drives into back of car in front in panic

at that point I backed off as I realised he was going to try and get away at any cost

discobver that road bikes can go quite fast with the right incentive, but alas not fast enough to catch him again

close but no cigar

got to work, had a shower and a shave, cup of tea and all is calm again

legs are heavy from yesterdays ride (which was into the wind both way) so decided against the gym at lunch time

probably wont get to ride at weekend as I'm on call (one of the downsides of being a CCS)

so back into the fray on Monday, need to start upping the mileage in prep for Strathpuffer, aim is to do 100 miles next week on the fixie and then up the weekly mileage by 20 odd miles per week, I know I can do this as I've done it many times before, only difference now is that I'm doing it as the days are getting shorter rather than longer

Next plan is to build up a mudguarded commuter bike, the OnOne Tinbred will form the basis, project 2 forks, Deore groupset and skinny(ish) tyres and a computer for keeping tabs on the miles will be put together sometime next week

Thursday, 20 September 2007

I'm only doing this because baby bear told me too

This will be an infrequent stream of bike related bile

today I rode to a meeting, I feel quite smug that I was the only one there who had done any exercise at all that day, however given my previous experience with smugness I fully expect to get carted sometime on tomorrows commute

thats all for now, more when it happens

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