Cycling - 2

Started by Dixkot, May 12, 2013, 00:27:41 am

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Quote from: Nïckslïkk2112 on August 31, 2019, 22:36:04 pmAfter a couple of days of conspicuous consumption, it was time to get back in the saddle again!

I've had a week of conspicuous consumption on a cruise in the Med and Adriatic, including copious quantities of croissants and cheesecake and about £80 spent on vodka martinis. I shall return to my low-indulgence lifestyle now, but I fear the worst when I come to attempt a fondo on Saturday.

On the plus side, I kept the knee joints moving on an exercise bike in the ship's gym and I did a lot of walking
around without them suffering much. I have a theory that hot weather frees up the stiffness a bit though, so that might be a factor.


Before cleaning and lubing my chain today, I did a bike inspection and was dismayed to see a bald patch on my rear tyre. A not insignificant one. It looked rather worse than all the cut marks already in it. What to do? My winter bike needs a new bottom bracket and I've not yet got round to having it done. So, what I did was to take an inner tube patch and stick it over the rubber free bit and hope it stuck.

Now today would have been a good day for a Cat and Fiddle attempt - not warm, not too cold, not too windy - but I decided to stay near home in case I needed to call out the support car; Mrs S can't cope with being more than ten miles from home, it's terra incognita...

Anyway, after 15 miles the patch was still there, after 35 miles the patch was still there, after 56 miles the patch was still there, after 71.6 miles and getting home the patch was still there. Phew. Relief. Hopefully it lasts tomorrow and then I can re-tyre it. I suppose 3,000 miles isn't too bad for a rear tyre which is a racing one, especially given the roads I tend to ride on - almost gravel tracks some of them!
Legend in my own Mind


September 07, 2019, 22:46:02 pm #3602 Last Edit: September 08, 2019, 10:43:04 am by Slim
Decent weather today. Wanted to do a Fondo, and weather conditions, with the wind coming from the NE unusually, seemed to dictate a trip out East. Additionally, I thought it might be nice to do Rutland and back as a sort of sentimental Fondo homecoming, since that was the first longish ride I did in my current cycling career, back in 2016.

I chose a different route from that one though, consisting partly of the newish route over to Six Hills, and partly a brand new stretch that bypasses Melton Mowbray to the south, going through places called Great Dalby and Little Dalby but arriving at the same point of entry into Rutland along Whissendine Road.

Decent weather, cloudy but dry. A bit cool. I wrapped up warm on top but wore shorts. Hoped conditions might warm up a bit later on but they didn't really, or not by much anyway. Would have been better off in tights. The sun came out for a bit once or twice. The wind was a bit annoying for the first half of the ride.

Anyway, a thoroughly enjoyable run out overall.

Started feeling a bit rough on the way back after about 50 miles. I didn't feel that great when I woke up this morning; the fallout from immoderate vodka inhalation on holiday I'm afraid. I shall stay off the sauce for a couple of weeks then go back to the occasional beer now and then. So although I'd planned to stick to a pork pie and an oat bar on benches in villages, I stopped at the pub in Burton on the Wolds again and had a crusty ham baguette with fries. A 25 minute rest stop did me good.

The lady in the photograph below has just emerged from the pub to ask me if I want white or brown bread, having forgotten to do so when I ordered it.

My right knee, which is the troublesome one and the only one I bothered to have scanned, held up quite well. Unfortunately the left one was quite painful after 60 miles or so. Not the stabby, irritated pain though, more a sort of arthritic pain. I have some way to go before I'll be able to do 100 milers again.

By coming back through Coleorton I thought I'd probably have extended the ride just enough to make it 70 miles but nope, 69.98.

Listened to my Beatles bio audiobook (handy for a long ride because the rechargeable battery in the MP3 player goes for many hours), then 5 Live on a DAB. Then when the battery in that conked out, for the last 20 miles or so, I listened to Level 42 and Badu on my phone. I have a 256G card in there with all my MP3s.

I'd uploaded the route to my eTrex yesterday because of the unfamiliar part near the Rutland end, but when I switched it on it didn't seem to be there. Annoying. Had to rely on the phone for navigation for a few miles in the most distant part of the ride to and from the destination, but that wasn't too arduous.

So I grabbed my Foretrex 320 for track recording and the battery on that conked out after Great Dalby, annoyingly. But I'd already started recording the track on my phone's Strava App 10 minutes earlier, luckily - so I could follow the route I'd set up on Strava. So I ended up editing and stitching the eventual track together from the two devices.

Nice to have a run out after nearly two weeks off. I hope I'll be in better condition for the next long one.

2700 done this year.


I have found some end of season form, which I am convinced has tied in with my new wheels, and changing to latex inner tubes which has made a noticeable difference to ride quality and comfort

2 good upgrades there
The new songs are an abomination


I'd considered latex tubes, just as a thing to try really. You have to inflate them more often, I think?


you do, but I inflate before every ride anyway, I like being at 100psi when I set off.

They are a bugger to put in, you need to be patient, like handling an oyster as there is nothing to them
The new songs are an abomination


Thanks Jonners. I might well give them a go, probably on the Cannondale.

I think I'll have a go at completing the neighbouring counties task again this year. I've already done Derbyshire, Warwickshire, Nottinghamshire and now Rutland. I've probably done Staffordshire. Actually I definitely have, just checked. Definitely not done Northamptonshire or Lincolnshire.


Woke up feeling terrible this morning, apparently stricken by some low level debilitating virus. Which is good, because it explains why I felt rough after about 50 miles on Saturday.

However having done only one ride so far this month I thought I should at least do 20 miles or so, on a decent weather day. And I wanted to see how my knees would do after a 70 miler at the weekend. So I set off on a Twycrosser this afternoon, intending to do the original, 22 mile version. But as I got to Sheepy I seemed to be doing OK so I pressed on to Ratcliffe Culey and cut across to Sibson. Came back along Gibbet Lane. Extended the ride slightly by opting to come home through Burgoland and Swepstone, and ended up doing 25.96 miles which takes me to a reasonable 96 this month.

I took the Cannondale for a change. I should use it more often. Of all my bikes it's the one that suits me the best, I think.

A cool, cloudy day and I was comfortable enough, but had to wear a couple of layers on top and cover up my legs. Back in tights already. It looks like the weather might perk up a bit for the weekend, though.

The knees did feel a bit tender over the last 7 or 8 miles. Probably needed longer to recover from the 70 miler at the weekend. I think they'll continue to improve. But who knows?


Wanted to do about 30 after work. Sunny and warm. But rather windy unfortunately. Set off to do a Twycrosser, without a particular version in mind. Decided to do the Triangular Orton Detour when I got to Twycross. Was tempted to do the full Fenn Lanes version since I was enjoying myself fairly thoroughly, but decided I'd keep it down to 30 or so after all and have a bit more time at home this evening. I took the Sibson / Shenton / Bosworth route.

At the crossroads at Bosworth which is 8 miles from home I realised I was on course to do a bit less than 30. So I extended my ride by pushing on up through Newton Burgoland and coming home via Swepstone. This adds 1.6 miles, which I call the "Burgoland Benefit". Paradoxically, the 0.58 miles that I can add by coming home through Coleorton rather than Thringstone is known to me as the "Coleorton Cost". It just depends how you look at it. But it's all about the alliteration.

Less blowy in the second half of the ride. But the sunny conditions disappeared over the last 10 miles, to be replaced by overcast skies and a slight gloom. I even felt a couple of spots of rain in Swepstone with about 3 miles to go, but it didn't start to rain properly.

127 done this month and three weekends left so I should hit this month's target; 320 miles.


Actually had a quick ride out tonight! Put a new rear tyre on and wanted to make sure it was on properly, what with it being tubeless. It didn't make much of a noise when the beading seated in the rim, but it appears to be in properly - it survived sharp bends, steep uphills, quick flats, potholed roads and gravel tracks :)
Legend in my own Mind


September 14, 2019, 16:40:25 pm #3610 Last Edit: December 01, 2019, 21:34:35 pm by Slim
On call, and still not 100% recovered from the lurgy. But I wanted to do about 45 miles. As is my usual practice, I stitched together two rides, one to the north (up to Belton), one to the south (a Twycrosser) so I could do that distance without being too far from base in case of an unwanted phone call.

Lovely day - warm, sunny and only a gentle breeze for a change. Nice run out. I've been slightly worried that while the right knee is improving slowly (I hope), the left one is getting a bit worse. But it was fine today over 43.85 miles.

And that takes me to 171 this month, not too bad considering I was on holiday for the first week. I may have a ten mile run out with 'er indoors tomorrow, as well. 2801 done this year.

I took a pic near Bosworth.

I weighed myself when I got up this morning. 69.94 kg, which is a record low this year and for a 6'1" bloke, probably a bit on the thin side. Undoubtedly whatever virus I'm getting over at the moment has overcome the enhanced calorie intake from my  week of lush living on the high seas.

I wanted to get my weight down to about 76kg when I discovered that I weighed 81.78kg in January, and I suppose I've gone too far, without trying very hard.

On the other hand - that body weight I was carrying in January is nearly equivalent to my present weight plus a backpack containing five two-litre bottles of water. That's a lot of dead weight to be pushing up the hills between here and Bosworth.

I don't want to lose any more, though. I'm starting to look like Albert Steptoe.


Well, today was nice enough for me to do my Cat and Fiddle ride. Not cold, not too warm, not too windy and the sun was shining. Nice. Now I wouldn't say I've had the lurgy this week, but I think I've had a bit of a cold, plenty of runny nose and a bit of catarrh and a tight feeling in the chest. I think I could tell that I wasn't quite at my peak as quite shallow climbs saw my heart rate get up to what it's been on the steeper climbs of late. And on the steeper climbs it was getting higher than it has been. But hey, I survived and I think I started to feel better as the ride went on.

I managed a new climb to me today, up to Sheldon. Quite a nasty little beast, max of 17% and quite a long - seemingly of 15+% gradients. Surprised to find I ranked 2 out of 50 for the day!

Now I have done a ride out to the top of the Cat before, but I didn't descend to Macclesfield and come back up the proper climb. I was a wee bit apprehensive about it, but as climbs go it's quite a nice one. Never gets to steep and after half way there are downhill sections. Which are nice. Certainly nicer than the Snake Pass, they both rise a similar distance, but the cat is about 3 miles longer at 6.5 miles, so almost half the average gradient. Surprised to see on Strava that only 24 people rode it today, but I suspect that cyclists that side of the Pennines went out to watch the Tour of Britain. Near the start of the climb, a cyclist came down and turned right in front of me on a nice looking Bianchi, their bikes don't half look well in their Celeste colour. Perhaps if I win the lottery...
Legend in my own Mind


Had a ride out to the Alpaca farm at Snarestone with Mrs Slim, 5 miles there, 5 back. There's a nice caff there. We sat outdoors and had afternoon tea.

I was slightly put off by the large metal barrow laden with plastic sacks of "Alpaca poo", allegedly "great for your soil". Only £2 a go but also only a few metres from the tables. But it didn't stop me finishing off my scone with clotted cream and jam.

A few other cyclists there and it would be an ideal rest stop if not for the fact that it's only 5 miles from home.

A slightly cooler day and cloudy, but barely a breath of wind. Would have been ideal conditions for a long ride.

First run out on the hybrid for a couple of months. Summer is pretty much over now and I still haven't got round to sorting out the gears, but it's very usable as it is to be fair.

And that bumps up the September total so far to 181 miles.


Bit of an easier spin out today, not that my legs were spinning that rapidly, but they seemed to warm up and feel better as the ride went along - unlike the weather which got greyer and drizzlier as the ride went along. But then, it is September now.

Managed to complete Strava's September climbing challenge today and my monthly mileage up to 329.
Legend in my own Mind


enjoying the new Harrogate course on Strava. its lumpy!
The new songs are an abomination