Monday, September 29, 2014

"A Summer of Cycling" - the Sequel!!!

# "What if I'd been born fifty years before you, in a house on a street where you lived? Maybe I'd be outside as you passed on your bike... Would I know?" # - Ben Folds

Late last summer I posted here on the blog about one of my favourite past-times that feeds my creative scribble pursuits by giving me time and space to think up new stories.  Progressing my prose with pedal power on a folding bike is something I've continued into 2014 (halfway to work after getting on an overland train) but I've also now added in a full cycle to work on my mountain bike, travelling the full 13 miles to my day job - traversing a wider variety of terrain and hopefully extending my fitness levels a bit...

So for anyone interested, I'm riding a cheapo (Halfords £99 in the sale) Mountain Bike "Shockwave" with 18 Shimano gears but have modified the bike slightly by adding some "semi-slick" tyres to aid my speed on the roads and cycle paths to work (incidentally I can't claim to be cycling this 26 mile total every single day of the working week - I still use the folding bike on my "off days" so to speak - and I have to confess, the car on the days I need to be in faster.

But it's still a speedy journey on the mountain bike to and fro - the 13 miles takes me about 1 hour 13 minutes on the downhill(ish) track on the way to work and then about 1 hour and 30 minutes on the way back home.  But it's satisfying to think I'm getting my exercise out of the way within the working day, rather than having to go back out again once I'm home in the evening (and it's relatively cheap compared to the gym!)

So a lot of this "training" was in aid of a charity bike ride that a colleague at my office set up in late summer to cycle "The Wall" - Hadrian's Cycle Route, in fact - and I thought I'd let the pictures do the talking for the rest of this post on that epic 62-mile journey which took us from sunrise to sun-fall to complete...