I noticed a shopping list forming in my head as I plodded my way through another turbo trainer session the other day.
It was sparked off by the idea that it might be nice to have a fan to cool me down while on the TT – I don’t think I’m the only one in my family to be really quite alarmed at how much I sweat when I’m on that thing.
The fan got me thinking about other things it might be useful to have for The Race Against Time. A handlebar mount for my nice new Garmin satnav was the first thing to enter my head – except I’ll need two so I can swap between bikes easily.
On the clothing tip I’ll need another one of those miraculously good merino vests from Kathmandu, obviously. Actually, make that two, so I won’t need to worry about doing any laundry during the ride.
Then there are the shorts of course. My dhb Finchdean bibs are the only ones I’ve got that I’d even consider wearing for longer than about 20 minutes on the bike so I’ll need at least one more pair. There’s no point making compromises in that department for obvious reasons so the new ones will need to be Assos. After all, I’ll only wonder how much more comfortable I could be if I go for any other brand.
My helmet’s seen better days too – it’s at least five years old now and rather tired and sweaty, so I’ll need a new one. As I’m blessed with an above average-sized brain – okay, I’ve got a massive head – my choice is limited to just a handful of lids and the only one I’m really prepared to be seen wearing in public would be the Met Predatore, so that’s on the list too.
If the weather continues to prevent me cycling outside much I’ll have to spend more time on the TT, which is a soul-destroying experience, so it might be better to get a set of rollers to keep the interest alive.
I’m also thinking about shoes and pedals. I currently use a pair of Time Atac XS mountain bike pedals and Specialized MTB shoes so I can easily swap between MTB and road bike. They’re perfectly adequate but I’m thinking over such a long ride I might be better off with dedicated road pedals and shoes. I like Time stuff so we’re looking at a pair of Xen Carbons at least and a nice pair of Sidis (well, anything less would look odd with the Assos shorts, let’s face it).
I’ve needed some decent eyewear for quite a while too – my old cheapo shades never did really cut the mustard. I tried on a pair of Rudy Project Rydons at the Cycle Show last year and they seemed incredibly comfortable so they’ll do for the list as well.
Oh, and tyres. I’ll need some tyres. I quite like my Conti Gatorskins so I’ll get a fresh pair of them for the ride I think.
I’ll need some nutritional stuff too – electrolytes, carb drinks, and energy gels should cover it I reckon.
And finally, just before the ride, I’ll get the bike serviced by those marvellous fellas at Enigma so everything’s in perfect working order.
Assuming I stay away from the rarefied top end of the Assos and Sidi ranges, and assuming there are no expensive parts to replace at service time, I calculate that this little lot could be mine for a nice round £800.
I wonder if I’ve forgotten anything. Whether I have or not, it looks like I picked the wrong year to give up the corporate job and go freelance. Perhaps I could manage without the rollers…