Disaster strikes!

Had a good turbo session tonight – 60 minutes with the boys from CTXC in Melbourne – and all was well until I unscrewed the resistance unit off the tyre. The adjusting bolt sheared and my turbo trainer is now broken! We have three inches of snow on the ground and no chance of road training this week…trying to get a spare part but it’s not looking like it can be fixed quickly. Will have to put an appeal out on Facebook and see if anyone has one I can borrow…

Well it’s not too long now…

By my reckoning it’s 3 months 15 days til the off. The countdown clock in the sidebar of this blog is generated automatically by WordPress – not sure it’s working how I would like it to!

I’ve got this countdown on my phone. My training plan shows fifteen weeks to the off and includes two rest weeks.

Just thirteen weeks then…three and a half months….106 days….

All getting rather real – I’d better launch the call for sponsorship!

And the badges have arrived…

Got some button badges to distribute to donors, they match the shirts we don’t have yet so hopefully the shirt design won’t change.

Pretty spiffy I think you’ll agree – £1 to you (they cost me 20p each) unless you want it posted in which case it’ll be £2.

Had a great weekend out on the bike – cold but light winds, was ten minutes over three hours for the 50miles which is the fastest I’ve done it in three years (I’ve been ill/fat/too tired to train).

Meet Triggers broom….

When I turned 40 I spent a decent sum on a hybrid bike…it was a Pinnacle Street Expede 1.0 and had a 7075 aluminium alloy frame with carbon forks and carbon rear stays – pretty spiffy!

It had a shimano 105 drive train and cantilever brakes for super quick stopping in the wet.

I’ve ridden this bike for nearly ten years every work day to the station and back. Rather hard riding for any bike – all weathers, salt and other road detritus getting into every crevice and causing all sorts of wear and tear.

Five years later the frame broke. It was covered by a ‘Lifetime’ guarantee however apparently this meant the expected life of the frame not any other definition! I managed however to claim a new one from Evans – they accepted any frame should last five years.

The bike was rebuilt however the bottom bracket and chain rings needed replacement (Tiagra not 105) and the headset was replaced. Cantilever brakes could not be mounted so (nasty) V brakes fitted instead. Carbon forks disappeared as mine would not fit on this less expensive 6065 frame.

The saddle rails broke so a new saddle was required. Shortly thereafter the spokes started to break on the wheels and I had to purchase a new set of Fulcrum racing Sevens. It’s had four new front derailleurs – my gear changing is poor, I used to change under full power and it bends the derailleur cage. The rear derailleur snapped some years ago and that was replaced too.

All in all the only bit of the bike that is now original is the handlebars and shifters…and frankly they are knackered!

Over the years I tired of paying bike shops to rip me off over maintenance so have become adept at doing it myself.

I’ve just replaced the chain and cassette, cleaned the bottom bracket and serviced the brakes and it now runs beautifully – well overdue as riding it through a winter gritting season is very hard on any bike. Nothing better than the silken hum of a well maintained bike…

Key to bike maintenance is keeping it clean – salt and dirt on the chain can grind a chain to breaking point in just a few hundred miles. Never ceases to amaze me when I see guys who have £1-5k bikes who clean them haphazardly.

Not all of them though, I have a good friend who, when he is on tour cleans every inch of his S-Works Tarmac with baby wipes every day…Chapeau Christian!

Turbo and ride

Didn’t ride yesterday – the dog need to go to the vets so I got on the Turbo for and hour and felt really good. As it turns out the weather was very frosty and Maurice, who went out with Laurence, came off at Framlingham on some ice.

I am a bit wary at the moment of poor conditions, last thing I need is to break something important in the run up to LEJoG…

Out this morning and felt good too. The stats don’t support this below but the wind was pretty brutal so was quick out and slow back. Still feeling good…

January’s training record

Well it’s not been as bad as I feared however did not achieve as much as I planned. Two weeks sick put a hole in this months plan but it is early days and things seem back on track. The weight continues to go down and the target weight is almost in sight.

On the face of it I only lost one week of training however I need to make up the fitness I lost from being sick. Still it’s a good start – four months now to go!