It wasn't planned to be this way. I was hoping to get a couple more weeks getting used to only having one gear on the flatter fenland roads.
The 48x16 gearing of the single speed is still moulding my legs into shape so I figured whilst setting out this morning to grab an hour that the riding would be flatter and faster.
But the fens do have a habit of spoiling even the best laid plans, and the stiff tailwind for the first couple of miles left me thinking that it would be ridiculously hard to get back down the Holme Road... therefore, I might as well climb up the valley road and zig-zag my way back using the hills for shelter...
Good plan eh?
So I headed over the A1 flyover at Glatton with more than a little doubt in my mind as to whether I had (a) the right gearing or ( b ) the right mental state to get up High Haden Road...
Fortunately there was company as to get up the climb I needed to join the route of the Richardsons cycle sportive that was headed from St Ives (Cambs) to Stamford.
As I chugged up the lower part of the hill out of the village it felt surprisingly ok. I even overtook someone (apologising for not being able to ride alongside them "I AM ON A SINGLESPEED AND I HAVE NO IDEA IF I WILL MAKE IT TO THE TOP") before the steeper part kicked in and I was out of the saddle trying to keep forward motion.
As it levelled out and I got into the wind I was still able to keep going and successfully make the Bullock Road.
But my legs were completely "jellified"...
I am not even sure that is a word, if it isn't I am claiming it. And all you cyclists reading this will know exactly what it means !!!
They gradually came back to some form of life and I pressed on towards Ashton Forest before cutting straight back to the A1.
The wind was bang on my nose, but despite flicking the brake lever to change down, no easier gear was forthcoming.
All in all though the singlespeed experience is proving to be everything and more I had imagined.
I know people say this all the time but it is cycling in its rawest form. Just pedal and pedal and pedal.