19 January 2014: Hi guys, I’ve had a wonderful day today. Started with getting up and out on the bike at 0715H, an hour before sunrise. It was a great feeling! Calm weather, empty streets.
Rode to Richmond Park and up to Roehampton Gate to meet #teamgreen for the RG Active Winter Group Ride. When we heard we were going to Box Hill I thought that I definitely wouldn’t make it that far on my relatively heavy and slow hybrid commuting bike compared to their carbon road racers!
We set off and immediately I thought, “oh no, not this direction”…heading towards the dreaded Dark Hill, a challenging climb for anyone.
Anyway, to cut a long story short the team were great in making sure I wasn’t left behind and I got to make some really nice new friends, AND made it via the most beautiful scenery and views to the top of Box Hill without wimping out!
As soon as I brought the bike to a standstill, amazed at how many bike clubs filled the car park, a coffee and energy food were thrust into my hands, causing me to drop a glove. No sooner had I picked the glove up (ever tried that while straddling a bike holding another glove, a coffee, food and a helmet?!) than my trainer said, “Simon, get rid of the coffee cup, we’re off before we get cold”….and off we went again!
On the way back, John the trainer kept me at the front with him and really pushed me hard. I hit my limit several times but just kept fighting through it with John’s help and support.
Finally made it home feeling like I was in Narnia and nothing was real. Refuelled on Whey Protein and Pocari Sweat, jumped into a hot bath, made grilled fish, pasta and veg, ate for 45 minutes solid (I’m eating double what I usually do!), jumped online as I ate and sealed the deal with a decent discount and pedals thrown in on a bike I’d been looking at, then went out for a half-hour run to loosen up my legs and lower back.
So all in all a great day 🙂
The bike’s a road bike, second-hand and looks tatty but in good mechanical order and light, so should be a good buy. I’m apprehensive about using drop handlebars because of bad memories of when I couldn’t get to the brakes in time on a racer years ago, but I’ll get over that because I have to.
The Whey Protein’s great but I’m dreading when it runs out because I got a great deal on this and if I can’t find a bargain again it’s £72 for 2KG!
My swim ‘jammers’ shorts have arrived (best deal was on Wiggle, recommended by John), so I think that next week I’m going to have to start my swim training. There’s a pool almost directly opposite where I live so it will be weekly sessions with RG Active and then extra practice near my place.