Setting off today on a 30 mile training run. It was a cold and frosty start this morning but with winter gloves on and several layers I was all set to go.
Did the usual pre-ride checks of tyre pressures and repair kits etc. and off I went to do battle with the morning rush that is the school run. It was a bright day if a bit chilly but I was soon into my stride and was happily going along, it brought a smile to my face as I sped along the cycle track past all the stationary traffic queueing into Southend.
However this was very short lived as I was about to experience the cyclist's worst enemy, a puncture and only eight miles in. No worries though as with spare tube and my new compressed air pump, I would be on my way very soon. Feeling extremely pleased with myself after only ten minutes on the road side I again took off and was cruising along at some pace, the wind rushing past and now out in the country away from the crowds and morning traffic.
When disaster struck, a second puncture in the same tyre. While this may not seem to be a problem it actualy was, you see its at times like this I realise how much of a novice I still am and how much of a challenge I have set myself with the London to Paris trip.
You see as I said earlier I had this fantastic new compressed air pump, the problem was all the refill canisters were still at home and so rendering the carefully packed repair kit null and void. Quandary was, ten miles from home and no way to fix the bike.
Eureka, my twenty year old son not at work till the afternoon would still be in bed! One phone call later and support vehicle was on the way. Having now abandoned the ride for the day and back home I set about the task of understanding how I was that unlucky to have got two punctures in two miles, was it just misfortune? Well no not really as again the novice in me had risen to the top. On closer inspection very neatly embedded in my tyre was a piece of glass, which from the inside was not visible and so when I had checked earlier while changing it on the road side it had been missed.
So with lesson number two now learnt, check both sides of the tyre following a puncture and to take your compressed air refills with you, I look forward to my next training session with hopefully less drama and being far more prepared. Roll on Paris.