Monday, April 18, 2011
Managed to get in the saddle on sunday - a fifty-miler to Windsor and back. As you can see, the weather was fantastic - temperature just slightly above optimal, but still great. This photo was taken from a field of rape (that's a field full of the crop known as rape, not a site of some ghastly mass atrocity) at Knowl Hill, looking towards Windsor. I'd recommend visiting it just to see, although you'll need to go on foot or bike to reach it.
The only thing that ruined it was the broken headset on my bike. It'd been growling at me for a few months, but yesterday it went completely. This left me with the alarming sensation of feeling unbalanced every time I turned a corner, went above thirteen miles an hour, or indeed, moved, thanks to the steering post wobbling inside the frame shaft. The fact that I still managed to do the whole distance is down to the fact that I know the bike and sheer bloody-mindedness.
As to fitness, I felt pretty comfortable for the distance, and the time (4 hours in the saddle moving; 5 hours for the total ride time) was just slightly under what I'm aiming for. Overall, I'd say I'm fairly close to the fitness I need for the London-Paris ride in August (for which you'll see a link over here on the right). My only issue with how well I feel is my left knee, but I suspect that's just because of the saddle height rather than anything serious. I need to play with stuff like post heights and cadence to get it all right, along with doing different distances.
Right now though, my priority is to fix the bloody headset.