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It seemed like years between my last outdoor ride and this weekend. Ten consecutive sessions on the turbo because of weather, work and illness left me thinking that I would never feel the breeze in my hair (well on my lid!) and the road beneath my wheels.

Whimsical? perhaps but three weeks of indoor cycling had made me stir crazy so despite the strengthening gales I was up and out early on Saturday morning.

And I braved the fens, toiling at 12mph for what seemed like an eternity into the strong breeze before a quick turnround at the Sawtry flyover and a rapid zoom back in the high 20's.

As I said to my neighbour, if you had seen me heading south towards Huntingdon you would have said "worst cyclist ever". If you had seen me zooming along with the gusting tail wind you would have said "he is going to win Le Tour".... I know my ability truly lies somewhere in between !!!

With that under my belt I started checking Metcheck feverishly on Saturday evening, planning to ride again but get out into the hilliocks. The wind had died before Sunday morning and I was out and about before 0900 but wrapped up accordingly.

My bike computer has a temperature gauge on it (how big time is that!!!) and although it started low, it soon began to rise as the morning progressed. I was under the A1M and into Haddon village before I realised that the breeze was getting up so I went as hard as I could (respecting the winter rule of staying in the little ring!), up and over the rise at Americas Farm and along the top of the Nene Valley. The descent into Polebrook was (as usual) a headwind and the sharp right at the bottom was like glass thanks to the wind taking downt he remaining leaves and then coating them with water to make a mulch. I stayed upright and pressed on.

The one thing that was coming through at this point and throughout my whole weekends riding was that it was great to be back in the saddle and getting some miles in. There is something really special about that first coffee when you get back from a tough winter morning ride.

It's a feeling unique to cyclists I reckon, we should savour it!!!

 

James has been blogging for road.cc for 5 years and racing bicycles (averagely) for 20 years. 

8 comments

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dave atkinson [6297 posts] 7 years ago
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sounds better than my saturday ride: i had a jolly trip down to bournemouth, where the wind was happily ripping the roofs off houses and the torrential rain was flooding the roads. I got four punctures and mild hypothermia  2

still, knocked out a metric century before i had to get rescued  4

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DaSy [737 posts] 7 years ago
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I'm picking up a bit of a vibe that you didn't completely enjoy your Saturday ride Dave...I'm attuned to these subleties you know.

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dave atkinson [6297 posts] 7 years ago
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heh. i enjoyed it in a triumph-over-adversity kind of a way, up until the third puncture. and they were all the same: snakebites from potholes i couldn't see cause the road was under an inch of water. by the fourth i'd run out of tubes and patches and dry things to wipe the tube with, and resolve. don't think even a HTFU wristband would have helped  1

amazingly all the patches i put on in the deluge have stayed put. another tick for tip top.

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James Warrener [1084 posts] 7 years ago
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You are going to have to help me out with HTFU !!!

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DaSy [737 posts] 7 years ago
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Jimmy - it stands for Harden The Fu@k Up.

Stuart O'Grady gave out wristbands with that message to all his CSC riders during the TdF in 2007 I think it was, or 2008.

It comes from an Australian Sitcom with a guy called Chopper who uses it as his catchphrase.

I wear mine with pride, it tells me to shut up moaning when the going gets tough...

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James Warrener [1084 posts] 7 years ago
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I think I need to get me one of those then!

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DaSy [737 posts] 7 years ago
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I got mine from the actual shows website, it came from Australia in fairly quick time.

http://store.ronniejohns.com/?show_product=HTFU

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James Warrener [1084 posts] 7 years ago
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lovely stuff!