Monday, 22 April 2013

Cadence Training

So after reading up on how to improve my performance, it appears that Cadence is the key. So I splashed out on an upgrade GPS with Cadence sensor. Boy did that make a difference, I certainly suffered more.

It seemed to slow me down a little, but we'll see if it brings about the improvement over time. It certainly helped with managing my heart rate.

Monday, 15 April 2013

Reap the Wild Wind

Spring may have finally sprung but it's brought with it some ridiculous winds, been looking at the long range forecast since Saturday and it doesn't drop below 40-50mph gusts until Wednesday.

I may be investing in a turbo trainer this week as the wind has been seriously hampering my training over the last couple of months.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

It stalled, but I'm back in the saddle.

I managed  just over 6 weeks and almost 4 of those on the new "road" bike, the Saracen Hack 2 which made a big difference to my average & maximum speeds ( not so sure it had a huge impact on my slower sections). Then the whole training regime stalled, it just fell flat as I got bogged down in work stuff again. However, I've turned a corner, got on top of things again (shame the weather hasn't still very wintery in North Wales for April), but in the space of a week I've managed  70 miles and held up a reasonable average on the mph considering my 6 week lay-off.

With my aim being to raise £1,000 each for McMillan, Cancer Research UK, and the Alaw Ward at Ysbyty Gwynedd. With the route being 300 miles, if I can get 1,000 people to sponsor me just a penny per mile then I can hit my goal.

Watch this space for more updates & to track my progress.

Thanks for looking,

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

One month later....

So a month on from deciding on this challenge, I've managed to get some training in since the beginning of January, but the last week has been tricky since the snow arrived. Just got to keep the motivation and try not to suffer too much when I can eventually get back on the road.

In other news, I've managed to lose 4 pounds since I started training (not dieting, just exercising more).

Looking forward to switching to a road bike, I've done OK on the mountain bike with the 2" knobbly tyres but hope that a different gear ratio on the roadie and the reduced rolling resistance might help to increase my average MPH.

One of our suppliers, Madison, have done me a special deal on one of these, the Saracen Hack 2, and I'm really looking forward to getting on the road with it. I chose this over an out & out road bike because of the state of some of the back roads that I'm training on round here and felt this might be that bit more robust for the combination of my weight and the mileage that I'm going to be doing on it during training. I'll update soon and let you know how I get on with it.

Friday, 21 December 2012

Time to do something

It's been a tough year this year, both financially and emotionally. I've worked my backside off and got nothing to show for it. I've not spent enough time with my kids, when quality of life was one of the reasons for moving here. There have been a few ups & downs over the year, but unfortunately more downs than ups, so it's starting to feel like I've got to climb out of the hole that I've got into.

The little bit of Latin that I picked up at Eastbrook Comprehensive in the early 80's springs to mind, "Mens sane in corpore sana." A sound mind in a healthy body. Maybe the reason I'm feeling so low isn't that life's hard, but that I've been stuck in the shop pretty much every day for 21 months. This year I've barely paddled, I've stolen (and I chose that word carefully) the odd evening out mountain biking by not spending time with my family, but mostly I've worked & worked, which primarily involves me on my backside in the shop, or occasionally moving boats and getting up & talking to customers.

2013 NEEDS to be different.

In 2009, we nearly lost my father-in-law to Leukaemia, in 2011 I lost my Uncle to Cancer, three weeks ago I got a message out of the blue that told me that a friend from University had passed away at the end of November, again Cancer, just 8 weeks between diagnosis and her passing. She was 33. Lovely bloke, climber, face on the Liverpool scene and all round good egg Dave Hooper was taken from us last year by this disease. Unfortunately I was too busy working to catch up with him, we always think we have more time.

The whole experience has made me reflect on my current situation. I feel that in my life, I have come a long way, but still have a long way to go and need to get my priorities right. My plan is to undertake a journey over the next 10 months, to do two things, improve my own physical health (and in the process I hope my mental health) and to raise money for Cancer Research UK, McMillan & the Alaw Ward at Ysbyty Gwynedd. If I can raise £1,000 for each of these charities, I'll be pleased.

How am I going to do this, well this is the name of the Blog, I intend to go back to my roots, I've come a long way geographically from where I started out and my intention is to jump on a bike and go back to where it all started. I intend to cycle from my shop in Valley, Anglesey to my old School  in Dagenham. I'm still trying to work out my route, but it's around 340 miles. I'm going to start training on the 1st of January and intend to undertake the ride on the 26th/27th October, the occasion of my 45th birthday (maybe this is my midlife crisis??) If things go according to plan, I'm hoping to complete the ride in a single hit, reckoning on 30-31 hours in the saddle.

It's an idea, now I just need to make it happen.

Watch this space.

Have a great Christmas and a Happy New Year.