Saturday Ride

Posted: August 6, 2011 in 2011, Rides

(Different) Bury Loop by slowjo61 at Garmin Connect – Details.

I wasn’t sure how an episode of Delhi Belly was going to impact on my ride when I set out but it soon became apparent. It was tough. It didn’t help that I was riding into a stiff headwind to begin with and I struggled. Little ring engaged for the first few miles, I tried to let my legs warm up into the ride but it didn’t work. Aborting the ride was not an option as time on the bike has been sparse this week. As Winston Churchill would have said ‘Keep Buggering On’ so I did, plodding away around a joyless circuit of Bury. Some light relief was to be found in the diverted cycle path in Ickworth Park; once a ‘cheeky trail’ it has been officially opened up to cyclists and it is tailor made for fun on a CX bike. During this brief session, I rediscovered the perils of riding a CX bike – brakes or rather the lack of them! I was coasting towards a gate after having ridden through some slop, engaged brakes and…… nothing! The front wheel bumped into the gate post but by then my speed had dropped considerably albeit not completely. The first half of the ride was a search for the short, sharp climbs that characterise the area – I did ask myself ‘Why?’ every time. If I am feeling off colour and am obviously suffering, why do I go out of my way to seek out climbs? I never did get an answer and I’m still not sure!

On this ride, the wind was behind me on the mid section of the ride (poor planning I know but it shifted direction mid ride – honest!) and I got as little bit of respite though when I made it into the big ring it was easy gear only time. Nevertheless, I sought out some variations to the normal theme, taking in one or two sections from a recent ride with Rich. The CX bike proved more than capable for most of it though one particularly bumpy/rutted section had me reaching for the ejector seat once or twice! I stayed in contact with the bike and forward motion was maintained at all times but it was shall we say…..’interesting’

Culford came and went and soon I was at a physical and metaphorical crossroads. Left would take me home relatively quickly, along quiet roads  and right would see me heading back to the woods, singletrack and a longer excursion. Glancing at the clock it was apparent that left was the only choice so off I went. As soon as I got past the Flempton Greyhound I realised my mistake. The wind had got up and it became hard work all the way home. Flempton and Lackford are pretty much low points around here and Little Saxham a high point (and I use that term advisedly). It is a fact of life that, living on top of a ‘hill’ sees me ending every ride with a gradual climb… nothing steep but enough that you notice. As soon as I crested the flyover and coasted down the other side I switched into warm down mode, little ring selected I twiddled my way home to a big mug of tea, a couple of squares of plain chocolate and piece of flapjack.

I was pooped and ahead of me I have the grass to cut and the hedge to trim. I have been instructed to move two pieces of furniture to my folks house a few miles away (while building work is in progress). These are big pieces… a dining room table and a large glazed cabinet. The thing is…. I only have a Mini to do it with. Haven’t worked out how to square this particular circle yet; maybe inspiration will provide me with the answer while I walk up and down the garden with the lawn mower!

Tune of the ride… one of my all time favourite tracks. I got the album (Led Zeppelin III) when it first came out and it still gets plenty of air time.

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