Wednesday, 19 February 2014

...........I ain't gonna wear the clothes that you like...........

I do wonder why I ride a bike sometimes. Once I set off my lungs usually complain especially if it's cold, the air rasps my lungs and something is usually coughed up (ick!) before they settle down. Then I seem to boil like a kettle, I get really hot, think about removing a layer then my thermostat seems to regulate itself and I feel okay. Then something will ache or I'll get a stitch which is a pain ;) As I always seem to be heading upwards it's usually my lower back but I've been working on my core muscles of late and not felt too bad on my last couple of rides. After an hour or so I've warmed up and everything seems to settle and I get on and enjoy the ride and remember why I ride a bike sometimes.

Actually got out on the road bike today, not done a decent ride on it for ages and the people who guess the weather said it would be mild and sunny, yeah right. So I set off into the dull mild greyness up the hill to Wheddon Cross passing the snowdrops brightening up the roadside on the way. Half way up the hill I could hear an HGV behind me, the road isn't narrow and was clear ahead I was going very slowly and even slowed down but he would not pass until I stopped and pulled over, he waved and beeped his horn and we carried on safely up the hill.

Down the valley road, great training for the cobbled classics if you're doing them, it might get resurfaced one year. Up out of Winsford, I could see the rain hanging on the hill so decided to don the waterproof, fluorescent yellow, a great colour in the damp murky greyness. Down to Withypool and up onto the moor, no getting lost this time just getting really wet.

I stopped on the moor to have a breather, it was silent, no wind, not a noise, just a soaking wet fluorescent cyclist in the misty rain, remembering why he rides a bike sometimes.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014 old man's taking polaroids but all he captures is endless rain, endless rain.........

Not blogged for a while, riding opportunities are few and far between lately, work and weather putting pay to any big rides especially on the road bike. I've been getting out on the mtb, getting muddy all part of the fun but even that's starting to wear a little thin now. On one of my rare road rides I took a tumble on a wet cattle grid, only bruising and nothing broken and I was okay too. Still taking pics though out on the bike and on foot, Exmoor is still stunning whatever the weather.

One thing I am pleased about is my improvement in stamina to go for longer rides on the mountain bike. I'm starting to link up loops and sometimes do twenty mile rides which a year or two ago I'd not even contemplate. It makes the riding more varied even if riding up muddy tracks is bloody hard work, I'm sure it'll be all worthwhile in the summer.

I even dusted off my old full susser and took it for a spin, no strava, no garmin, back to basics, 26" wheels so very retro, it felt like hard work though and to be honest I didn't enjoy the ups but the downhill's where a blast.

I tried some new climbs today, I've been down them but strangely I always think when I'm heading down I must come back up this way! Hard work, mud, water, rocks but I got up eventually, more route options but I think I'll try them again when it's a bit drier.

Even with all this crappy weather I'm so lucky to live where I do, hills, trees, sea and the beach, it's that statuesque beauty thing..........