After the hills of the Purbeck’s yesterday, I am giving my legs a rest today, legs feel a bit achy and I still have the calf injury. Will be back on the bike tomorrow and Sunday.
Yesterday did not start well, all I had to do was load the map from the PC to the GPS and then go out and ride in the sun. Got up looked out the bedroom window and it was raining, got down stairs to the PC and it does not recognise the GPS is plugged in, reboot the PC and nothing just sits doing nothing. Well after an hour I managed to get the PC to boot and download the map to the GPS, it has now stopped raining and is now drizzling so after dropping the wife off at work I put the bike on the car and set off.
I found a parking space in Corfe Castle just down from where the ride starts and for the next couple of miles it is all up hills, some of this was ridden and other bits were walked. No sooner had I go to the top and I was going down the other side. No sooner had I come down the other side I was up the road looking at the next climb, again some ridden some walked. Once at the top it is a nice run down past Old Harry Rocks and down into Studland. Then after a little ride around Remstone heath and forest I was back at Corfe Castle. The section of single track across Remstone heath were nice but so many of the tracks had areas of soft energy sapping sand. The bike felt great going over the rocky single tracks, I am slowly starting to get to grips with the bike.
The GPS was very useful yesterday, having marked out the route I thought I wanted to go and then out riding realising the track I was on went a better way so being able to check that it would link up to where I wanted to go so being able to modify the route as required is great. Otherwise I think there would be a lot of riding around in circles.
Here another picture of the bike, taken on Wednesday
Monday night weigh was another gain, I was expecting as much so was not really surprised. Just don’t seem to be able to get my head around it all at the moment.
Went out for a ride on Wednesday night on the road to get a bit of practice for Sunday, 16 miles in 70 minutes which included a couple of stops, according to the gps averaged 12mph, was reasonable happy with that.
Here one of the pictures from Saturday trip to Westward Ho!
The rest of the photos can be found in my gallery
Went out riding early this morning (well it was for me on a Sunday) and did my normal loop down by the river and out past the airport and returning back along the river. But this time as I went through into Hurn Forest I did my normal run through the tree and then instead of continuing up the gravel track I headed back towards the car park and then up in to the tree on the other side of the path and out along the fence and then returning to the main gravel path near the top of the first section gravel track. This little extra loop added 1.8 miles to the ride which gave me a 22.8 mile ride this morning and I felt quite good when I got back. I was a little concerned that heading back into the wind but I did not struggle any more than I normally do.
My only trouble on the ride was the gps, it refused to track the route I was doing, on a ride like today’s where I know the route I use it to record the distance just encase, like today I added a little extra loop into the ride. I am not sure what the problem is but I will have to investigate.
I think I have had a fairly good week this week diet wise, don’t think it is as good as last weeks but with two good rides and the possibility of going out riding again tomorrow morning before work thing are looking good. In fact they are already looking very good as I managed to fit in to two pairs of shorts today, one pair I have not worn for 2 maybe 3 years because they were to small (or should that be I was to large??) and the other pair were brand new never worn I bought them some 3 years ago and they have never fitted me. I have a wardrobe full of clothes I have bought and have never fitted, so I might end up with a whole new wardrobe this year albeit about three years behind current fashion……….
One reason for my early morning trip was so I could get back in time to watch the Formula One. I used to watch it religiously but over the years my interest has waned, it just became boring. I thought maybe this year with more teams and no re fuelling during the race it would be more interesting. But to be honest I feel the jury is still out on that one, will have to see how it goes over the next couple of races.
So in yesterday blog I complained at how bad I was going up those hills. So for my Sunday morning ride I decided to to go over to the local heath as it has a couple of hills and I felt I could do with the practice. I left home at 7:30am blue sky, sun was out but jeez it was cold, had to stop down just the road and pull the polar buff over my ears.
There was one good thing for riding when it is this cold, all the mud is frozen and some parts of this route are very muddy. As I had hoped the first sections was frozen mud, in other places the surrounding area has been trampled to death so I could get round most of nasty spots. I was not long before I was at gate 15 (or is it 16??) and the run up to the rubbish tip road. Now this is no big hill but being a fatty on two wheel it feels bigger than it is and I normally reach the top wheezing, puffing and gasping for air. But today……….I won’t say I flew up it but I rode up it with out much of a problem. There were a couple of other minor hills and I went up those without to much of a problem as well, now I’m puzzled.
I had fun negotiating a decent covered in ice and just for the added fun something had driven along the path recently and left deep ruts (to be honest this was not the only track I found this on, apparently they have been erecting fencing all across the heath so they can keep cattle on the heath to mange the vegetation, picture of cattle here) this decent leads down to a puddle of lake proportion.
The route across the heath (at least the one I ride) is normally quite short so I decided to lengthen the route, the plan was to leave the heath, ride through an wooded area close by and then rejoin the heath further round on what would be my normal route. As I headed back toward gate 15 (or 16), I turned right through the trees and came out on the track that runs up to the Pit Road. Just after the climb I turned left onto a track I have never ridden before, it was pretty much like most of the tracks on the heath, sand, gravel, clay and mud and sometimes all four types at the same time. The GPS was showing I was heading towards the main road which was roughly the direction I was going. It joined the bridle path that runs from the Crematorium, I had ridden the bottom of this in the past, a track with two lines of paving slabs (for vehicles to access a water station or something) that ends in a steep decent with a large iron gate (6″ x 6″ box section construction) across the track which leads on to the road.
A quick mile up the road and I was into Delve Woods, not an area I have been before but I followed the GPS route through the trees and then lost my directions. I eventually emerged about half way along the road I had just ridden up rather than at the starting point where I entered the woods, oh well. I headed back up Gravel Hill and then turned right into Magna Road. A mile and a bit down the road I turned off Magna Road and back along a track toward the heath again. This starts off as a nice wide track and then narrow down to fairly narrow track with a 6ft wire fence one side and a 4ft barb wire fence on the other side with trees spilling out into the path. A good 3/4 of the way down this path I came across a fallen tree blocking the path. Having made the effort to do this extra section I was not keen on turning around and going back so I climb over the fallen tree (which was propped up by the fence) complete with bike before continuing on down the path.
I now rejoined the normal route I take across the heath, the earlier decent down the iced covered track was now just water and mud as the hill faces the sun and with the sun high in the sky it was making short work of the ice.
Only done 26 miles riding this weekend, I really want to be pushing 40 miles but I just read a post from a couple of months ago where I had ridden less miles than I normally do and had had a good weight loss on the Monday weight in, well I won’t argue I could do with a good loss after the past few weeks so here hoping.
Before I leave you all, here is a very useful web site (sorry if you use it already). For those that want to plot a route for a GPS but don’t want to fork out the cost of commercial products like Memory Map, here is a free version with a very useful addition Where’s the path, click on the “OS and Google Mapping side by side”. What you actually have is an OS based 1:25000 map on the left and a corresponding Google map of the same area on the right. You can plot a route on the left screen and then export\download it for using on your GPS or you can import a route into the program from your GPS providing it supports .gpx file format (most do), have a play it is very good piece of software.
Thing 1) The past 5 days have been days of lovely blue sky and warm spring sunshine but it was to much to expect for it to last into the weekend. I woke up this morning to a grey overcast sky and the day progressed to get colder and greyer.
Thing 2) Never believe what is written in a book, all weather route it said?? Since when has all weather routes included thick claggy clay that stick to your tyres like the proverbial to a blanket.
Thing 3) Your wife will ride down a long muddy hill with deep ruts at speed without a problem, but give her a piece of flat trial and she will fall of the bike and land in the mud.
Thing 4) Cut price Organic Grapes are not a good deal, especially if you don’t like grapes with pips in.
Thing 5) When your wife says we don’t need any shopping, what she really means is we need to go shopping.
Thing 6) The mobile phone will stop ringing the split second you pick it up and when you phone the person back they will be trying to phone your wife (who also can’t get to answer her phone quick enough). When you eventually get through to said person phoning you they will ask you what you want!!
As you can see I have had a fun filled day, a dull overcast day dawned at least that bit of the forecast was correct. The sun did try to break through but it was never for more than 10 -15 minutes worth of sun and then an hour or so before it popped out again.
We decided to do one of the rides from a book we bought a few month ago Mountain Bike Guide Dorset by Colin Dennis. It is a small book which gives details of 33 mountain bike ride across Dorset (they do other area’s as well), these range from 5 miles to 23 mile routes listed in 4 different difficulty levels. We (I say we but it was the wife who chose) decided on route 10 Badbury Rings and Kingston Lacy. It was only a short route, with no hills of any significant and an all weather route. Well there was a couple of small hills, long drag if you like, but what made them difficult was the deep covering of wheel hugging clay based mud from the bottom to the top. At one point on the second hill I stopped half way up but was then unable to get going again as I could not get any traction. I had to push my bike a few meters up the track to where it level out slightly and start the climb again.
The wife took a nice tumble from her bike (not from her point of view though), riding past Badbury Rings itself her back wheel spun out sideways on a patch of clay throwing her to the floor. Fortunately no more damage than a bruised arm and ego. Mind you she is lucky to have made it that far, we had only just left the car park at Pamphill and ridding down the very narrow road when a car cames round the corner towards her forcing the wife to swerve into the bank where she got caught up in some large pot holes (read craters).
On the whole it was a nice ride, the mud made it difficult. When I was plotting the route out last night I thought maybe do two laps or maybe half the loop the second time round. But by the time I got back to the car I had had enough. I think if I knew what the route was like I would of been alright, I would of known what to expect.
I am out riding again tomorrow, not sure what route to do yet (might even do Badbury rings again). I am currently in two minds at the moment, I want to up my miles I do over a weekend, but I don’t want to do it to quickly encase it cause injury or slow my weight loss. I also want to get some mid week rides in, be it early morning or late evening while it is still daylight. With the day getting longer this won’t be so much of a problem, but I don’t want to do to much to quick.
A quick question, what sort of blog do you prefer, one that is a:
- Daily Blog
- Several times a week Blog
- Weekly Blog
- Once a month Blog
No particular reason just wondering