losing confidence

Yeah it happens, especially when I pretty much bike on my own, eat on my own, live on my own (sorry to my landlady here, who is an absolute legend and a good friend).
I have the internet, Twitter has given me some amazing friends, Facebook bores me rigid (and no doubt I bore my FB ‘friends’ rigid), and sometimes the only escape I have is my blog, oh yeah and a book or two (maybe 10).

I have this Sportif (LadyCat at Newbury Racecourse) on Sunday. I have no idea of anyone who is doing this – in fact some people have turned their noses up (fellow cyclists) – ‘oh well if I was there I would be doing the Magnificat, not the LadyCat.’ Er yeah, thanks for that, I’ve only just got started in the expensive lycra clad world of road cycling. I don’t have ‘kit’ that matches my bike – and to be frank I don’t care. I don’t have cleats – can’t afford them. I’m quite frankly a bit worried – I’m not overly fit, I’m kinda hoping I can get through it!

And it’s not just the cycling, I’m fair worried about doing this TdF thing. I don’t actually know if I can afford to do it, although the hotel in Paris is booked, as are the hotels in Pau.

Maybe it comes down to money, I don’t earn very much at all, and I don’t care who knows that. Working with racehorses pays a shitty weekly wage that barely covers the cost of living. Wonder how I afford my TdF trip? Pool Money. Please don’t tell me to move back to Andover unless you can give me the months rent upfront (mostly in excess of £400).

So for those of you sporting brand new, up to date kit/bikes/cars, lucky aren’t you! Please don’t shove it in my face – I do a more dangerous job than any of you!

A rant is a rant I suppose, but I’m still under confident about this Sportif issue! I doubt it really matters in the long term…

Somewhere I’m smiling 😛
Ciao

Cycle routes, glass and the road.

I wasn’t sure where to ride tonight, as again it seemed I was dodging imminent rain showers. It was definitely chilly out so wearing four layers, I decided to head up what has become my favourite route on day four of 30 Days of Biking.

This involves part of National Cycle route 23, which is great! Well sort of. On the road it’s actually very good, but I decided to follow the parts on the pavement for a while – especially when I’m slow going uphill. The part that’s not great is the debris. Glass, sharp twigs, stones. Now I’m happy enough with a decent riding surface, but swerving around the debris – look, I’m sorry, I don’t want punctures! – meant also swerving around pedestrians, fellow cyclists, joggers and kids. It also means slowing down, even outright stopping in places, whereas I prefer to keep going at a steady pace.

On the way home I stuck to the road so I could keep up a decent speed going downhill. I got beeped at, sworn at and a couple of tired grins from fellow cyclists heading in the opposite direction. Naturally I would rather be safe than sorry, but I don’t think riding on/ through that much debris on the cycle route is any good to anyone!

Anyway needless to say, I’m loving it. I successfully dodged ALL the showers, I didn’t get a puncture and I had a longer ride than yesterday. I did 7.6 miles in 41 mins – not overly rubbish (alright, please don’t laugh too much!).

So should I stick to the road, or ride on the cycle path?

Still can’t believe I missed the rain….. 🙂