Monday, 12 December 2011

Fixed Ambitions

Wear the right gear and cold mornings can be a pleasure to ride.
 Riding to work on a bicycle through the warmer months is a healthy and enjoyable way to travel.  You tend to arrive at your desk smelling fragrant (if your work has shower facilities) and feeling wide awake.  And a well paced commute also justifies the odd dietary breach...

However, once the clocks change, the warmth bleeds away and the light fades. The fields become barren and colours congeal into greys and browns. And you get to work rattling with images of potholes looming out of the dark, cars kicking grit off the road, arctic winds and slushy puddles. But all these brutal experiences are tempered by the grim satisfaction that you’re as hard as nails.

Sunday, 11 December 2011

How to Lose 2 Stone in 2 months. Week 2

Two weeks ago I set myself the target of losing 2 Stone in 2 months. Last week I completed the first weekly update. I managed to lose just under a kilogram in weight.

This week my goals were:-

1. Give up lunch club.
2. Run at least 3 times this week.
3. Eat sensibly.
4. Drink no alcohol whatsoever.
5. Cycle extra miles on the way to work for at least 2 shifts.
6. Do 100 sit-ups every day (by way of punishment for my terrible performance in week 1)

This is how I got on .......

Sunday, 4 December 2011

How to lose 2 stone in 2 months. Week 1

Starting Weight                                                                    Week 1 Weight

In order to start my preparations for the 2012 Wiggle Dragon Ride, Last week I started on my mission to lose 2 stone in 2 months. This is my first weekly update.


I set myself a number of goals:-

1. Start giving up smoking.
2. Get (completely) pissed only once.
3. Cycle 50+ miles on friday.
4. Do 50 sit-ups every day this week.
5. Purchase some annoyingly expensive trainers.
6. Run a few miles on friday and sunday.

Here is how the week went.....

Hope Vision 4 and Fibre Flare combo


Since November 2010 my commute has increased from 6 miles to 11 miles each way. At night, my former city commute had been illuminated by street lights. So, a cheap and cheerful front light and a flashing rear one was all I needed to keep myself visible to other road users. But rather than cruising through the well-lit streets of Coventry, the bulk of my journey is now along country lanes. All well and good in the summer months, but in the middle of the toughest British winter in years, the ride is considerably more perilous.

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

How to lose 2 stone in 2 months

Well if it isn't the Wii. Screw you Wii.

On Sunday the 12th of June 2012 I will be tackling the Dragon Ride and aiming for Gold standard. There is however, something of a problem. I'm in the worst shape of my cycling life! As well as a distinct lack of form, I'm carrying almost 2 stone more weight than I was during my peak period, 728 days ago. In order to lose 2 stone in 2 months I will need to tackle the problems that lead to me gaining weight in the first place, and work on building form during two of the harshest months of the year.

Monday, 28 November 2011

Dear PC Gamer

4 years ago I stopped subscribing to your magazine, took up riding bicycles and left behind the world of PC gaming. I left because my PC experiences were drying up. I found myself scratching around the dust looking for gaming nirvana and only ever finding dried up husks. I rode (and rode and rode), occasionally checking the gaming websites to see what was around the corner.
Early in 2011 I saw two games that promised to invigorate the scene. Skyrim and Battlefield 3 were looking very exciting. I opened up my wallet and upgraded the PC to m-m-M-M-Monster SPEC! I then got back on the bike and rode for another six months.

Warwickshire Hill Climb Championship 2011

Matt Clinton giving it stacks

"Matt, what do you think? How are we doing?" This is the question one of the group asked Matt Clinton a few months ago when he came out riding with us one summers eve. He thought about it for a while and then said, "You need to learn how to suffer". We waited for some elaboration on this point, but none came.

Warwick Cycle Races 2010

In September 2009 I entered the Warwick Cycle Races, my first ever criterium, and a first taste of sporting competition since school. I started the race at the back of the pack and finished somewhere in the middle. At the end of the race, having enjoyed the thrill of speeding around a closed circuit, taking outrageous chances on bends, I solemnly vowed to win the 2010 Warwick Races. My plan was vague, but the ultimate goal was clear; to win category 4, the entry level event for adults. The lowest category race of the day, and generally filled with a rag-tag bunch of cyclists, some there for the fun of it, and others there to win. In 2009 I was there for the fun. This year I entered to win.