Updated: Oct 10, 2019
I’ve got a bad back.
It’s been a problem for years.
It has stopped me from training properly and sometimes from riding at all over the past 4 months.
This means I have had to drop out of the C2C and L’Etape du Tour.
I won’t get my money back from L’Etape or get to ride in the RCC group alongside Rapha founder Simon Mottram.
Don’t feel sorry for me. I already have the ability to display epic levels of feeling sorry for myself.
Basically I haven’t written anything in weeks because I’ve been sulking while watching friends and club mates go out on the Saturday morning training rides I started and dropped out of, while they have got better and better.
Instead of whining about this, I should be celebrating the fact I can ride at all.
Because I couldn’t keep up on Club rides I went out on my own and sought out new roads and new routes. Having never ridden them before I had no Strava segment times to beat and I was happy to ride them slowly just to get to know them. There is no better place to ride in the world than Warwickshire on quiet roads on a sunny day.
I should be celebrating the fact that I rode 1,000km in May. Slowly and mostly on the flat. But still, 1,000km.
Two weeks ago a did the Wicklow 100km sportive, following the roads that my Mum rode as a teenage girl with the Bray Wheelers Cycling Club (much to her delight). It was a really well organised ride, on a great route in lovely weather. I rode through places I have known by name since childhood but never been to. It was like a trip down somebody else's memory lane.
Last weekend I had a surprise day out with Rachel, riding from Bicester to Bletchley Park and back. Sunshine, cycling, coffee, cake and a little bit of history thrown in.
Honestly, what the fuck have I got to feel sorry about?
I will be going to the C2C as a not-so-super-domestique for my old friend Brian Watson. I will join him at around 130km and keep him company over the next 100km as best I can.
I am not going to France in July for L'Etape, but instead will be heading to Germany in early August with my younger son Michael to complete this year's version of Riding the Long Way Home. It will be 850km in a week from Hamburg to Home through Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium. Yes, Belgium. I will have a lot more to say about this trip over the next two months, but I can’t wait to go.
In the meantime. Chapeau to my friends from WLRCC who have put in the time in the saddle to get themselves ready for the C2C, especially to Ieuan Stroud whose progress has been immense.
Double or should that be triple chapeau to club mates Glen and Will for completing the Mallorca 312 challenge. Outstanding effort.
To quote the great Eddy Merckx:
Ride as much or as little, or as long or as short as you feel. But ride.