Blog

Virtual Vitality London 10k

The stats on Garmin Connect With the crazy state of the world today due to the covid pandemic, there are not many, if any, races taking place.  Virtual races are the next best thing and today’s run was no exception.  We had a great time.

My first half marathon

run stats on Garmin Connect And so here we have it. My first half marathon ever! I have been training for it using a Garmin Coach training plan and was supposed to have completed the run last weekend. However, the weather was so foul that it delayed the event and ran it today. The run… Continue reading My first half marathon

New Training Route

Well, it is not a new training route as such, but more of a resurrection of an existing one. My weekly training goes something like this: Monday Run (Garmin plan) Tuesday Walk (2 miles minimum) Wednesday Run (Garmin plan) Thursday Bike Friday Run (Garmin plan, normally long run) Saturday Walk (2 miles minimum) Sunday Long… Continue reading New Training Route

Thursday bimble

click for route Every so often I like to take off on my gravel bike with no destination or route planned. Average speed doesn’t matter. With the strange, sometimes stressful, daily pandemic world we live in, that can be a great relief. It is all about riding for the love of it. Just take off… Continue reading Thursday bimble

April stats

Quiet a good month.  A mix of cycling, running and walking.  Mostly indoors due to lockdown.

Virtual -v- Real World Cycling

During the COVID-19 lock-down, I have aimed to do as much as my training indoors as possible.  I have a smart trainer for cycling and a treadmill for running.  I have used various apps for both with my current favourites being Zwift for running and Bkool, the same brand as my trainer, for cycling.  Zwift… Continue reading Virtual -v- Real World Cycling

Plans for 2020 – Update

Well, I guess it inevitable with the COVID-19 crisis, rides and events would be cancelled.  It goes without saying that this is the right thing to do.  And now that in the UK were are in an almost lockdown situation, I very much doubt if these will happen at all. So here is the situation… Continue reading Plans for 2020 – Update

Cycling-themed movie playlist

Here is an interesting playlist from Cycling UK.  As they say: Whether you’re self-isolating, in quarantine, social-distancing, or just looking for a movie-marathon, grab the popcorn and get comfy, there’s something here for everyone. Here is a link to their list: Get your cycling fix(ie) with our suggested playlist of cycling-themed films IMO, there are… Continue reading Cycling-themed movie playlist

Is it ok to ride?

I have read many posts on social media with people asking if it is ok to go out on the bike during the COVID-19 crisis.  For what it’s worth, here are my thoughts. I guess it is inevitable that cycling events are being postponed or cancelled at all levels.  I am already missing the cobbled… Continue reading Is it ok to ride?

Back on the road to fitness week 3

Tempo to Sprints So the challenge here is to complete 4 short, high-intensity intervals of increasing power, after first opening with a steady 15min Tempo effort. By working aerobically in the early 15min effort you will be improving the ability to deliver oxygen to the working muscles and preserve your carbohydrate stores for the finishing… Continue reading Back on the road to fitness week 3

Sugar-free energy drinks

I am always on the lookout for sugar-free alternatives to energy drinks and will be giving this one a try: 500ml orange juice 500ml water teaspoon of salt Comes with a vitamin C boost and a darn sight cheaper than energy drinks!

Plans for 2020

I have kept my ride events plans for 2020 more realistic and have been a bit more selective rather than enter anything and everything I can think of.  Each of the events I have entered for has a different twist. Essex Spring Lambs A sportive I have thought about entering over the years but had… Continue reading Plans for 2020

Back on the road to fitness

For several reasons, I have not been on my bike since before Christmas.  This is frustrating personally as I was pleased with the level I had reached; although there was a long way to go before I hit my goals.  Now I am back to square one.  But I am determined to get back on… Continue reading Back on the road to fitness

The joy of cycling part 2

I’ve blogged before about forgetting about all the trappings that we love to surround ourselves with and just getting out on the bike and riding for the sheer joy of it.  Today was one of those days.  I had planned a ride out on the road bike but, because of strong winds, decided on an… Continue reading The joy of cycling part 2

My Year in Sport

2016 was not a good year in many ways. So far as my cycling went, I lost focus and didn’t ride anywhere near as many miles as I should have. Must do better in 2017.!

RELIVE your ride

Here’s a nice site that was launched fairly recently.  Simply connect Relive with your Strava account, go out for a ride and, after a while (which can be a few hours) you’ll receive an email with a link to a nice little video of your ride.  

How to cycle 100 miles

Riding for 100miles, 160km or a century is a goal for many cyclists. Here’s the best way to go about it. From Global Cycling Network

Motorists face prosecution for driving too close to cyclists

West Midlands Police target cycle ‘close pass’ drivers in UK policing first From West Midlands Police website Cycling groups have praised West Midlands Police for becoming the first force in the country to proactively target “close pass” drivers who endanger riders. Rules of the road stipulate motorists should give cyclists at least the same space as… Continue reading Motorists face prosecution for driving too close to cyclists

Takeaway-on-Sea

On a hot summer night, would you offer your throat to the wolf with the red rose?  Whoops sorry, that’s not what this is about, great song that it is. But on a hot summer evening when you decide to go for a ride and maybe buy fish and chips, the question is, how do you… Continue reading Takeaway-on-Sea

A simple question

So, what do you think the courts would give you if you were guilty of causing death by dangerous driving?  Before you answer, consider what that means.  You have caused the death of another person because of the way they drove their car.  It was their fault that the other person is dead.  You killed… Continue reading A simple question

Well that was embarassing

I headed out early today for a 50 odd mile ride.  The weather was beautiful – a warm sunny Sunday morning.  What I didn’t expect was to come home looking like this: So what happened? Crashed with a car?  Swerved to avoid a child or animal in the road? Nope nothing as dramatic as that.… Continue reading Well that was embarassing

Keep on running

I had been thinking about giving running a go for a while but, to be honest, never really thought it was for me.  I used to run many years ago at school, but that was more because I could use it to escape from the other sports which I hated.  When my wife first started… Continue reading Keep on running

2015 Infographic

Could have done better as the long distance bike rides dropped off a bit early.  Still, I’m now running as well which is all to the good.

How to overtake cyclists – the video all drivers should watch

Chris Boardman and master driving instructor Blaine Walsh explain how to safely overtake cyclists, referring to rule 163 of the Highway Code. And also watch the companion video, SIDE BY SIDE. This discusses how riding two abreast is recommended in the Highway Code, and how it’s safer to overtake a group of two by two… Continue reading How to overtake cyclists – the video all drivers should watch

BBC joins anti-cycling agenda

So our wonderful public broadcasting service, the BBC, has decided to jump on the charabanc and join in the war against cyclists.  Still maybe I shouldn’t expect anything else from a company that allowed Top Gear to pillory cyclists every chance it got.  But I digress. When I started reading the article, I thought, “oh… Continue reading BBC joins anti-cycling agenda

Cycle Lanes (Again)

I have blogged several times about my dislike of cycle lanes and how, in my opinion, they can be downright dangerous for me and other people (as well as children, animals being walked, etc) who (mis-)use them.  I am also fed-up with the abuse of motorists when I choose not use them, mainly because of… Continue reading Cycle Lanes (Again)

South Essex Villages bike ride

What a great day it was today for cycling. Warm sunny weather, slight breeze. Just perfect. And it just so happened that today was also the South Essex Villages bike ride organised by the Rotary Club of Basildon. It was advertised as: A fantastic challenging route for the experienced rider traveling through varying countryside and… Continue reading South Essex Villages bike ride

My bike rides for 2014

I am behind in my ride planning for 2014, but here is what I am hoping to achieve.  I am sure some will fall by the way side, but you have to start somewhere don’t you.  And the more the merrier!

I was hoping I could have started the year with the Cambridge to Southend ride.  I haven’t managed this for the past two years due to the appalling weather.  Sadly I won’t do it this year either as it is not being put on due to lack of support.   I can’t help think that if it would have been held in April or May instead of March that this wouldn’t have been an issue.

So here’s the latest list (there will be others):

Now this is a real problem as I have done the Orchid Essex for several years and love it.  But the Wiggle Essex was the best ride I have done. Hmmm lots of pondering needed…

6 April – Essex Roads Spring Lambs
The Essex Roads New Spring Lambs Sportive is on Sunday 6th April 2014 and as a sportive rider you are invited to this even exiting event! It’s a 150 Kilometre Sportive covering the best of our wonderful county of Essex. It’s one of the first early-season challenges of the year and one of the few sportive rides located in the South-East

17 – 8 May – London Revolution
In 2013 thousands of cyclists took up the challenge of the MITIE London Revolution making it the largest multi-day sportive in the UK.  Riders of all shapes and sizes conquered the iconic 185-mile loop around the capital with hundreds staying with us for the sell out camp and party at halfway

8 June – Orchid Cycle Essex
With sporting activities suitable for all abilities and fitness levels, you can also enjoy a BBQ, beer tent and family entertainment throughout the day back in the park making it a day out for all the family. We also have a GoRide event to teach kids bike skills and safety.

8 June – Wiggle Essex Explorer
Ride the most picturesque parts of the 2014 Tour de France stage 3 route.  We’ve a fantastic new HQ for 2014 providing immediate access to the very best parts of the 2014 Tour de France stage 3 route – to be held just 4 weeks later.  Quiet well-surfaced  lanes and pretty villages of weatherboard are the order of the day.

15 June  – Essex 100
A brand new challenge route for 2014 featuring chip-timing and web results so after the event, you can see your overall time and average speed along with the opportunity to compare your time with your friends.

22 June – Essex CountrysideThe event is back again for 2014 with brand new routes across the picturesque Essex Countryside.

20 July – London to Southend
There is no way I will miss this. Starting in Victoria Park, East London, we’re soon out of town and after stops along the way for lunch and tea, we reach the Finish in the pretty gardens of Priory Park, Southend where you can relax and enjoy refreshments, music and sports massage before making your way home – Southend Victoria railway station is close by.   Stops for lunch and tea? LMAO!!!

26 July – Essex Castle (my birthday weekend ride)
I really enjoyed this last year.  Come and enjoy a great day’s cycling and raise money for Age UK Essex and Colchester at the same time.  Starting in Colchester, the ride offers three beautiful circular routes of 25, 50 or 75 miles, taking you along the quiet country lanes and through the picturesque villages of North Essex.

31 Aug – Essex 100
Our Essex 100 charity cycling sportive is one of our most popular rides attracting over 700 riders.   You can enjoy some excellent cycling terrain on this bike ride raising funds for vital research for sick babies and children. Three route options take you on a journey through quiet villages and the farmlands of north Essex where the undulations will have you in and out of the saddle.

7 Sept ? – Southend Bikeathon

A must for old time’s sake

A very blustery ride home

So this evening I arrive at Fenchurch Street station to find hordes of people milling about and the doors to the station closed.  Seems like a power failure down the line had brought everything to a standstill.  So rather than wait around for goodness knows how long, I head off to Liverpool St station and… Continue reading A very blustery ride home

Why you should love your LBS

The internet has certainly made life a lot easier.  I can buy new tyres, wheels, spare parts, even a whole new bike all from the comfort of my armchair.  I can find training advice online and plan my rides in meticulous detail.  I can download ride data from my bike computer and share it with… Continue reading Why you should love your LBS

Essex Cycle Orchid 2013

I was up at the allotted hour to get ready for the Essex Orchid 2013, a 74 mile ride through the villages of Essex to raise money for the male cancer charity.  I should have gone back to bed! I was reading an article the other day which listed the 10 things to do to… Continue reading Essex Cycle Orchid 2013

Funeral bike

I said to my wife “I would like this for my funeral” She replied “Who’s going to pull you through the streets on that thing” It’s nice to be loved Sunset Hills Cemetery in Eugene, OR has taken their natural burial offering to the next level.  Funeral Home Director Wade Lind has designed a three-wheeled… Continue reading Funeral bike

There is nothing better…

Today was my longest ride of the year so far.   And what a fantastic one it was.   64 miles off into the Essex countryside to ride to Maldon and back with a cake stop on the way home where Tatia and Seri were waiting for me. There is a hill on the route which is… Continue reading There is nothing better…

F-f-f-freezing Sunday ride

Like everyone else, I am so fed up with the cold, rain and snow that seems to have been going just about forever, that this morning I decided to JFDI and go out anyway.  But man was it cold.  It must have been the coldest ride ever.  The pain in my toes and finger tips… Continue reading F-f-f-freezing Sunday ride

A cold and blustery ride

I finally got back out on bike today after too long a lay off due to ice and health reasons. And it never felt better. yes it was freezing cold and hard going with the temperature at 3C and the wind chill making it feel like -1. My toes felt it worse and I am… Continue reading A cold and blustery ride

Tips for cycling in snow

From: ETA Trust Keeping your head, hands and knees warm will help you stay alert and relaxed. Cyclists of old used to stuff a newspaper down their fronts to keep out the cold – if you are ever feel in need of an extra layer give it a go as it is surprisingly effective. In… Continue reading Tips for cycling in snow

Getting back into training

So, the start of a New Year and time to get back into training.  I have been out of the saddle for far too long, having not ridden since November due to weather, Christmas and other things. I have two goals that I want to achieve: To be fit enough in time to ride the… Continue reading Getting back into training

Rides for 2013

So here are my initial thoughts on rides for 2013: 23 March, 75 miles – Cambridge to Southend 19 May, 75 miles – Wiggle Essex Explorer 9 June, 100 miles – Orchid Cycle Essex 16 June, 60 miles – Essex County 23 June, 60 miles – Essex Countryside 21 July, 54 miles – London to… Continue reading Rides for 2013

Southend Bikeathon 2011

A quick mention for a great end of season sponsored ride.  And one that is dear to my heart as it was the first sponsored ride I did when I got back in cycling several years ago.  As you will see from the photographs, this is not a ride I use my road bike for,… Continue reading Southend Bikeathon 2011

London to Southend 2011 – going to be wet but wild horses wouldn’t stop me doing it

I have searched every weather forecast on the web and they all say the same thing, wet and windy (it will be a crosswind with a slight tailwind rather than headwind which helps a bit).  So it’s out with the waterproof and arm warmers.  Am I mad? Maybe.  But I love this ride and wouldn’t miss it for the world.

1,000 miles done this year

I am quite pleased with myself at having cycled for more than 1,000 miles so far this year.  It might not be much by some people’s standards but then I am not ‘some people’. I have gradually increased the distance I have ridden on each outing and if I continue to progress at this rate,… Continue reading 1,000 miles done this year

Building up the miles

Well, this was certainly a great weekend to be out on the bike.  I managed to get out on both Saturday and Sunday and racked up 59 miles.  I’m very pleased with that although my sit bones are complaining a bit. I have also extended my usual training route from 25 to 33 miles by… Continue reading Building up the miles

A Boris Bike Virgin No More

Ever since Boris announced the launch of London cycle hire scheme, I have been umming and ahhing about whether to join-up or not.  Well, I finally took the plunge and today was my first ride on one. I had expected the bike to weigh a ton and although it undoubtedly was heavy, I was rather surprised… Continue reading A Boris Bike Virgin No More

Cycle events for 2011

So that’s the main events for this year sorted out, just need to find something for May and August: 26 March – Cambridge to Shoeburyness Starting in Cambridge, this 74 mile on road bike rides takes you through the beautiful Cambridgeshire countryside, through the villages of Great Shelford, the stunning Finchingfield and Rettendon. With various… Continue reading Cycle events for 2011

A look back at 2010

It has been a long time since I have written anything for my blog.  Must try and do better next year. Looking back at 2010, it seems to have been the normal balance of achieving what I wanted to achieve against not achieving other things due to various reasons including illness (not serious thank goodness),… Continue reading A look back at 2010

I am cycling 100 miles to nowhere – can you help me to raise money for Cancer Research UK?

On the 31st July, I am taking part in Relay for Life.  The Relay event in Southend will be going on for 24 hour when teams of up to eight people will take it turns walking laps and each team keeps at least one member on the track at all times.  To sponsor me please… Continue reading I am cycling 100 miles to nowhere – can you help me to raise money for Cancer Research UK?

Hot and sweaty 26 miles

Phew that was a very hot 26 miles.  Happy with the average 15mph too.  I thought the heat would have gone out of the day but apparently not.  And that was following a wonderful relaxing day at the beach and before a juicy steak cooked on the BBQ. The only disappointment today was England crashing… Continue reading Hot and sweaty 26 miles

Nearly that time again

Wow, I was checking to see how long it was to go until the London to Southend Bike Ride and thought I’d go back and read my previous blogs about it.  I still can’t believe that this year’s ride will be the fourth time I have done it.  Where the heck has the time gone!… Continue reading Nearly that time again

Essex Orchid 2010

Another fantastic Essex Orchid event and thank you to Essex Roads for doing such a great job organising it.  The marshalling was excellent as usual, there was free water as well as bananas and really tasty snack bars (must buy some of them). This is one of my favourite events of the year, second only… Continue reading Essex Orchid 2010

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