I did the big bicycle ride thing last Sunday.
It was this: knackering.
But it was also this: most excellent!
Sorry it’s taken me nearly a week to write it up, but I’ve been waiting for some photographs to be mailed me (I didn’t take a camera).
Pic 1 shows our team, bright and breezy and ready for the off, just a couple of miles outside Clapham Common. That’s me: fourth from the right… not the one in a skirt!
Pic 2, shows us in the official photo tent at the end of the ride, in Brighton. Somehow, we managed to lose several members, including Dave, the mad Scotsman. I’m crouched in the middle.
I think I hit the wall about 40 miles in… that’s when the legs started to complain. They complained even more when I reached Ditchling. I didn’t even TRY to ride up there: just walking up was hard enough! Same thing with Turners Hill: I got about halfway before thinking “Sod this for a lark!” Pushing my bike up the hill, someone from the sides shouted at me “C’mon, you’re a superhero! You should be able to whizz up there!”
“It’s Sunday”, I replied, “It’s my day off”.
I also saw plenty of accidents along the way: too many cyclists, riding too fast, too close together. But as I say, it was well organised and medical services were well on hand.
I completed it in a time of five and a half hours, which wasn’t too bad, I thought, considering how long it took us to get out of London and also considering I stopped for forty minutes to assist one of our team who had got a puncture. Not that I was trying to set a time, of course
The following day, my legs and backside were pretty damn sore (despite having spent Sunday night in a hot bath with a catering size packet of Radox) and I was glad I’d taken the day off work.
Will I do it next year?
Y’know what, I think I just might.