Sunday, 8 March 2009

Cycle log 07/03/09

This is the first cycle log. Seeing as I've delved headlong into the world of cycling - in particular road racing - over the past few months, it only seemed right that I should keep you all updated on it. I'm going to clearly mark out the cycling blogs so you can skip them if they bore you rigid.

The logs will give a run down of where I've been and for the bike nerds among us, will include a record of things like what I was wearing, how fast I was going and if I managed to break the sound barrier. So here goes:

One's company

I've always been a bit of a lone ranger when it comes to my rides. On the occasions I've been accompanied by friends trying to get back into shape it inevitably ends in disaster.

Like when Steve pulled up for a ride on a mountain bike that would have a job getting stolen at midnight outside an amusement arcade, dressed head to toe in his rugby kit.

We got as far as the Ridgeway - about 1.5 miles - when his gears packed up. Using the three gears on his front cog, we got as far as Southend pier - 3.5 miles and had to turn back.

Since then I have avoided drunken conversations about cycling.

So I almost had an accident when I was greeted by a jolly "morning!" from another rider while somewhere in the wilds of Barling yesterday. It had been a perfect ride, out along Marine Parade, to Hadleigh, then through Rayleigh, Hockley and Rochford past bankers' mansions with views across the Roach Valley. I had been lost in my world, at one with the machine, leaning into corners, attacking the hills.

Barling is a bleak piece of country and thanks to its winding roads and rural bleakness, quite popular with riders. My new companion wasn't alone - suddenly I was surrounded by about a dozen rouleurs, who, it transpires, are all from Leigh and gather for regular rides.

So the lone ranger days might be numbered, provided I get up early enough, which is more of a challange than the riding.

Time: 1 hr 44 mins
Distance: 25 miles
Average speed: 16.3mpg
Max speed: 30.1mph

Rapha clobber:
Winter cap
Softshell Gloves
Long sleeve jersey
Fixed shorts
Neck warmer

Bianchi D2 Cyclocross, set up for road

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