I woke up this morning to sun streaming in through my window. Given that I was supposed to be getting up at 6:00am in the dark, ready for my Winter mini-sportive, this was not a good thing. It was, as it turns out, 8:37am. The start line was 90 minutes away, and I was due over it between 9:00 and 9:30am. You do the math, as our trans-atlantic friends say. Ah b*gger…
As is my wont, I took to the twitterverse to bemoan my situation, to be kindly informed that it was proper icy out there and it was probably all for the best really. To be fair, although I wasn’t pleased about it, I wasn’t surprised. I hadn’t really been feeling it last night – wasn’t excited, was lacklustre about it all – and I think my instincts knew it wasn’t to be. I’ve been under the weather all week, with some sort of cold type thing, and my tummy has been unhappy too so I haven’t eaten much for days either – not the best preparation for a long winter ride. But I’d have done it anyway – you know me. However clearly my body knew better. I never over-sleep. I never lie-in. In fact I’m frequently not all that good at sleeping at all! So for me to both get an early night and to sleep for 9 1/2 hours is a pretty clear indication that something is not quite right. The spirit was willing…the flesh was…well, the flesh knew better *grin*
Which left me with quite a dilemma. What to do instead? I couldn’t face yet another gym session. Six in a row? No thanks. The thought of ice on the road sent shivers down my spine, especially after January’s little mishap, but the sun was shining, and I didn’t want to wimp out completely. So I compromised. Yes, apparently I can compromise. Who knew? Following an invitation to coffee by a man flu stricken GB, I decided I could ride for an hour or so a little later on, to give any ice time to go, and then walk up there and back – thus safely covering the two hour rule. It seemed safer to be out on my own for an hour than for two. At least that way in case of accident I’d only be half an hour or less away from home. Although there would still be no-one with me to scrape me off the floor, this seemed less scarey at that distance. I said I could compromise, not that I could be logical ok?
I put on all the layers I could, temporarily transforming from thecyclingmayor into themichelinman, and headed out around 10:30am. I made myself a loop that mostly stuck to main roads (gritted) or those facing into the sun (melted), and to the flat. I don’t mind climbing hills, and it’s a darn fine way of keeping warm on a day like this, but the idea of hitting a patch of ice going down t’other side was quite a deterrent. So it was straight down the A38, across to Mark, through to Wedmore, back to Cheddar via Nyland, and home. I only saw 3 other cyclists whilst out there, one of whom kindly advised me to watch out for the traffic which was apparently mental. Having made the mistake of coming home past the hordes emerging from Cheddar car boot, I think he had a point…
Cycling time: 1:07:57 hrs
Distance: 18.93 miles.
Avs: 16.6 mph
ODO: 11344 miles
It was never going to be a fast ride, what with the cold, the wind, and the restrictive layers, but I think that’s a fairly respectable speed, all things considered. It was also reasonably hard work, thus further demonstrating that riding 60 miles might well not have been a good idea even if I had made it up in time this morning. But it was a ride, and after ten days without one of those, man did I ever need to be on my bike :). And then I got to do coffee and cyclist chat with GB later. It was kind of like one of those Masterchef meals where they break a recipe down into its constituent parts and reinvent it – a deconstructed ride. All the usual elements but not together :).
Today may have been my first event DNA, but on balance I think it’s worked out for the best. My FB friends inform me that everything happens for a reason, and that my body was trying to tell me something. Maybe they’re right. So I’m over it now :).