Three fairly recent cycling firsts for me.

I finally got my time home significantly under an hour (wind assisted). I’ve been able to do the 19.2 mile route at around or just (a minute) under the hour mark pretty consistently, but I just couldn’t seem to crack it by any decent amount. Which I was finding most disappointing as that is also the fastest time I’d managed on fixed gear. But the other day I checked the time on my mobile as I set off from work and it was 17:13 and when I got home (knackered!) it was 18:11. So 58 minutes (as accurately as I can measure it), but(!) as soon as I’d got on my bike at work I hit traffic queuing to get out of the car park and so had to get off and walk about 500m round up to the roundabout and cross over the road before setting off. And then, near home, I had to pull off the road going up a hill to let a tractor past. So all that would have added on anywhere between two to five minutes. Oh for a cycle computer, or even just a wristwatch.

Another time cycling home at a brisk pace I had a fly whack me on the lip. It felt like a stone being thrown at my face because of the combined speed and it stung a fair bit. Then I realised whatever it was, was still clung on to my lip and was actually stinging me - it must have been a wasp. I flicked it off and carried on, gingerly feeling my lip swell up with gloved hand.

Probably about a month ago now (inspired by the Tour de France) I had the opportunity to double up my route home as the girls were out somewhere and so it didn’t really matter when I got home. Ok, so it was only 39 miles, which isn’t exactly a long cycling distance, but I managed it at exactly the same pace; so two hours. I’d love to be able to go out for longer rides, but that would pretty much mean getting up exceptionally early in the morning and doing it before work - no thanks. I also found out that is pretty much the furthest (at that pace) I can do without food (not eaten since about 8am that morning) or water - I had right jelly legs when I got home.