Ed B
Posted by

July, August and September.

Ed B
Posted by
09 Sep 2014

I’ve been really bad at blogging regularly so here’s an update for July, August and September.

July and August went by with very little cycling being done. It’s amazing how plans to go cycling get pushed aside when there’s good company, good weather, wonderful food and the odd glass of red on offer.

Despite the lack of training I did manage to get a 46 mile ride done on my birthday with my good friend Gareth. I wasn’t on top form that day (too much wine the night before) but despite that we got cracking at quite a pace. We hit Solihull in 35 minutes (a record time for me) and then it was on to Dorridge and on to do a loop around Warwickshire taking in Kenilworth Castle.The first 28 miles felt ok, lunch was had and then it was back on the bike to finish the ride home.  I should probably say now that this ride was meant to be a 52 mile ride that ended up being 46. On the way out of Kenilworth my legs started to moan and my brain started listening. It was a real slog out of Kenilworth towards Balsall Common and I hated every minute of it. My hatred grew with every twist and turn and was compounded by a rather cheerful Gareth who appeared to be coping quite well. To cut a long story short we decided to call it quits at Dorridge and jump on the train back into Brum. It was only later, over dinner, that Gareth confessed to being a little bit stiff from the ride – I felt a little less rubbish knowing this. The 46 miles done that day was the furthest I’d ever ridden but still 6 miles under the target of 52.

The end of July came along quickly and the last long ride before packing up to go camping in Wales needed doing. We set off on a 27 mile route to deliver wedding invitations to all of our friends in Birmingham, a rather nice way to get a few miles in.

Wales didn’t offer much in the way of cycling enjoyment even though there were several routes on offer that we could have done. We only used the bikes once whilst we were away which was a little bit embarrassing considering that the campsite we had chosen to stay at was owned and run by Doreen Cartwright and her husband Cyril, both amazing cyclists back in the late 40’s and early 50’s. Doreen held the women’s 6 mile and 25 mile record and Cyril (of Manchester Wheelers Fame) won a gold medal for track cycling at the Empire Games (now the Commonwealth Games) in Auckland in 1950, he also set several road racing records. Unfortunately, Doreen didn’t talk much to us about her cycling exploits and sadly I’ve not managed to find out much about her on from trawling the depths of the internet. Doreen and Cyril are both now in their 90’s and due to ill health Doreen now runs the campsite on her own. Anyway, something about the crazy drivers along the country roads put us off another outing.

The middle of August came along with a gastric flu bug; safe to say not a lot of cycling was done other than a slow few miles along the Rae Valley route before bailing out in favour of a cup of tea with my parents.
On 31st August Beck and I decided that we (I) needed to know what the full 52 miles felt like so we went out and rode the route for the Bikeathon, well almost. We got a bit lost, had a few temper tantrums and covered a few extra miles than we needed to but we managed it and got home in one piece knowing that 52 miles is not only doable but not as terrible as it sounds.

Last weekend we popped up to Lichfield again with another of our friends, Lizzie. A really lovely time was had by all and after the ride a lazy few hours was spent chatting about anything and everything over dinner before jumping on the train to come home. This coming weekend will be a weekend of rest before the main event on 21st September.

Am I nervous about it? Maybe a little bit but I think it’ll be ok, it’s not a race so I’ll just take it steady and if it takes me all day, so what!!! It’ll be time spent well supporting a very worthy cause.
See you at the finish line.