Return Of The Road Bike
It’s been a long time since I’ve ridden my road bike, Christine - last July in fact. So on Friday last week, I gave her a good spring clean and lubing. Along the way, I used the handy chain wear checking tool I bought to check her chain. Good thing too - it’d done around 1,800 miles and was in need of replacing.
Having done that, there was only one thing to do on Saturday . . . go for a ride.
I did a 30 mile loop across the north of Newcastle, then down through the city centre and over the bridge to Gateshead, before coming back over the water and home via Wallsend and Walker. I took my camera along too, as I was going to be passing my favourite cycling facility in the North East - Gateshead’s flagship college development:
Before you ask, those are bottles of orange squash on the bike - I’m not in the habit of carrying round urine samples with me. Except for certain special occasions of course.
Riding through Newcastle I had one Assassination Attempt, with the driver of a people carrier cutting across my front wheel to make a left turn. Being in the city, I chased and caught him, but as I pulled level the driver opened his window and offered some fairly gushing appologies. He looked pretty shaken up, so I just accepted it as a near miss that we probably both learned something from.
On the way home, I stopped in at Whiptail Cycles in Tynemouth to chat to Ben about the new wheel he’s building for Daisy. While I was there, I couldn’t help but notice this fixie, belonging to one of the guys who works in the shop:
So. Thoughts on riding the road bike after eight months of more padded cycling? Quite strange really - the riding I’ve been doing on Siegfried & his predecessor, Wilf has done quite a lot to keep my legs in tone, but even so, I was a little sore on Sunday. I also found it easy to keep the cadence up, averaging 98 rpm for the ride, and maintaining a healthy speed of 17mph average (including about 5 miles of stop-start through town, where I seemed to catch every set of lights!) was no bother at all.
Where I really noticed it though was in my . . . um . . . undercarriage. I’ve been doing somewhere around 10 hours cycling a week right through the winter, but obviously on a different shaped saddle. I was really somewhat tender on Sunday.
Too much information? Yeah, probably.
Sorry about that - I would say that it won’t happen again. But you’d know that I’d be lying.