Monthly Archives: August 2010

Last Blog for a while.

Holiday tomorrow! Yahoo etc.

This by necessity will be my last Blog until probably a week next Wednesday or Thursday. Not sure what day we’re coming back. The folks haven’t got t’interweb at their bungalow, Tywyn hasn’t got an internet cafe and the mobile signal is pants so Iphone comms will be sporadic at best.

I’ll tweet and Facebook via my Iphone when I have the chance.

Bees got a hammering at Worcester yesterday, 48 – 3. We were lucky to come second in all fairness. It went pretty much how I expected. The ex Premiership outfit were stronger faster and more street wise than us. The lads did give their all though and shouldn’t be too down. They never gave up. I’d have been happy if we could have kept within 30 points of them.

As predicted the banter from the Warriors coaches who I work with was merciless. The bastards!

A few pics of the game.

Bees warm up

Scrum near Worc try line

Bees attacking line out

Tomorrow I’ll be setting off at about 0730hrs, I intend to get to Churchstoke at about 1230hrs to meet my folks for lunch as they head t’other way to get to the airport. It will be nice to see them. I should then be bowling up at Tywyn at around 1600hrs to 1700hrs.

So have fun and I’ll be back in about 9 or 10 days!


Busy busy busy!

Yesterday was more of a problem than I thought re the roofrack. Without being boring and writing a complete mini series I had dramas getting a bracket to bolt the rack onto wifey’s motor. In the end I had to make my own which meant trying to source a vice, which I couldn’t, so I resorted to holding the metal in a gloved hand, trying to find my long lost power drill, which was where it was meant to be so was obviously the last place I looked and then blueing a number of drill bits as I found my chosen steel was pretty hard! But I did it in the end, although my nice easy 15 minute job finally finished at about 1530hrs just in time for our usual visit to the Dodford.

The road bike was washed and lubed to within an inch of its life ready for Monday’s epic, the met is still set fair which is good.

I was thinking about Monday’s 113 miler while cleaning the bike. While I never say “never”, this pedal to Wales is probably going to be my longest ever distance that I’ll do. I’m not a long distance cyclist as such, mainly because of time contraints and other stuff that I do or needs my attention. My usual commute, a morning off for a MTB micro adventure or a swift 50 miler is going to be my usual bikey fair. So while I did a century 2 weeks ago and I have another one this Monday, this is definately not going to be the norm!

This afternoon is all about Rugby, Bees v Worcester Warriors at Six Ways. The first match of the Championship. A tough game for the boys as Warriors were relegated from the Premiership last season and will be looking to bounce straight back up. We as always will be struggling as we have the smallest budget in the league! But the afternoon will be a brilliant opportunity for banter as I know the Warriors coaching staff very well as I coach there with the North Midlands School of Rugby. I’d best sharpen my wit then…

Holiday prep…

Today I’m mostly going to be getting the roof rack on wifey’s car and cleaning and fettling my Giant for Monday’s pedal to Wales.

Oh and I’m glad I wasn’t pedalling yesterday, the weather we had here in the Midlands was bloody biblical! I thought it was the end of days!

Sunny today though…

It’s really not about the bike…

I’m talking weight loss here. You cannot pedal all the time, not even JB. The majority of the time is life. Working, family stuff, other interests and the day to day issues we all have to deal with.

While dealing with this stuff, you have to eat. And therein lies the problem for the fatty on a weight loss through cycling plan. It takes a great deal of motivation to be permanently sensible, it takes but a momentary lapse to undo an age of good.

To use a military analogy, “the terrorist only has to be lucky once, we have to be lucky all the time. “

For whatever reason, this week I’ve been permanently hungry, so far I haven’t lapsed, but I know it’ll take just one minor thing to get me bingeing.

I seem to be obsessing about curries, fry ups, beer, kebabs, chips, oh, did I mention beer and curries? For the past year I’ve had one or two minor food obsessions but nothing like what’s happening at the moment. I’d really like an explanation as to why this happens to me in a prevention rather than cure kind of way. The only cure I’ve found so far is to stop being a whinging girl and to crack on. But it is bloody hard, surely there’s an easier way to cope when this happens rather than just manning up?

The other weird one is that I know I have a greater capacity to eat badly when I’m off the bike for a time rather than when I’m pedalling every day, what’s all that about then? Surely the greater cycling work load would have you hungrier? I seem to get weak willed food wise much easier when I’m not pedalling.

Sorry for the bleating this morning, just a bad week in the head I guess…

Hmmm, not good…

It seems I won’t be pedalling now until my ride to Wales on Bank Holiday Monday. For the second morning running I overslept. A sure sign all is not right in Clive’s world. Dunno what’s up with me…

So, in the car again. Which also means being super careful with the food.

Some bike related stuff, I got my rear wheel back yesterday evening all tightened and trued and plonked it back on my Marin. I also re-tensioned the Brooks saddle which was getting a bit saggy and gave the leather a good feed. I need the bike to be top notch for Snowdonia. The areas I’m going are way out away from civilisation relatively speaking for the UK.

The last few weeks there has been a noticeable ramping up of rugby stuff with meetings, coach education and general prep for the start of the season.

Monday night was coach education with the England Forwards Coach John Wells running a contact session with Bees first team players and me and my mate Ski filming over the past weeks and producing some core skills DVDs for the coaching staff at the club and local Junior Clubs. We have a video session tonight where we’ll get our work critiqued by the Club’s management. When we have an approved video I’ll post it here just for interest.

John Wells England Forwards Coach running a session at my club on Monday evening.

Back to the pedalling or lack thereof at the moment, it’s interesting how sometimes you can’t pedal enough and sometimes the love seems to go. I ain’t that bothered I’m not pedalling at the moment, I’ve noticed that I get like that when there’s something big coming up or I’ve done a large amount of riding.

It is, as I’ve discovered during this past year, impossible to stay totally focussed all the time. It’s how I deal with the downtime that decides whether I’ll win the fight or return to my old lethargic gluttonous self.

Take today, I know full well that I would attack the sandwich van when it pulls up at 1030hrs with avengence, a bacon and tomato sandwhich and a curry pastie with a can of coke would soon be consumed, so I’ve deliberately left my money at home to fend off my weak will. My breakfast will be my usual shredded wheat. Boring, but sensible. It’s a tad disappointing that I know I still can’t trust myself though…


Had to come by car today as I had to open work up very early. I would have come on my bike but I overslept. I think my body is telling me it’s ready for its holiday.

Only 2 days left here though. I will be pedalling tomorrow come what may!

Dan was chuffed to bits yesterday with his pedalling. It was a magical moment watching him pedal off. He still can’t quite start off by himself yet and I have to steady him to get him going, but I think that’s only a matter of practice. His stopping technique is a giggle too, he just abandons ship! Oh and steering, ’nuff said about that!

A few piccies of the grand event:

No doubt he’ll be bugging his Mom or his Sister to go out again today.

His bike is a typical kiddies bike though, they seemed to be designed to put kids off! The brakes are too big to reach for small hands and I’ve mentioned before, it’s heavier than my road bike, I think it’s made from scaffold piping!

This is the place for “proper” kid’s bikes. At a price though.

And while we’re on the subject of kid’s bikes, here’s a picture, taken in I think late winter or early spring of 1967. It’s a certain fat cyclists first ever bike, or trike should I say. I was pedalling pretty early. I would have been 3 at the time.

I think you should all publish your first ever bike related photo, go on, you know you want to!

It was a busy Sunday, no change there then…Busier Monday…

Had a good giggle around Arrow Valley in Redditch, Dan especially had a laugh pedalling his way around the Lake.

He is quite a determined little feller, he tried to pedal up this, then found out he couldn’t so pushed it up instead, no mean achievement considering he’s 3 and his bike weighs more then my road bike!

Arrow Valley has some surprising sights, this beautiful little brook surrounded by trees.

His pedal was punctuated by some serious Blackberry picking and scoffing.

It was a pretty good family morning out.

Fay and Dan posing up a tree.

Me, trying to pedal Dan’s bike at Fay’s request…And failing miserably.

But the main thing is the kids enjoyed themselves…

Got back to some serious bike maintenance.

My Marin minus rear wheel getting fettled and Danned…

Then it was the Ridgeback’s turn.

I decided to take the front mech off, it never gets used and I know all about chain stretch and stuff, but too late. It’s due a new drivetrain and I intend to get it re-sprayed and have some welding done on it as soon as funds will allow. So it won’t get any more knackered than it already it is!

Front mech off, look at the state of the frame!

A XT front mech in serious need of some TLC!

Dealing with the bar stuff, bar ends off, grips off, then sort the brake lever and get the Rapidfire mech off.

Stripped bar, ready for a clean down…

Finished article. Looks a lot better and for a winter commuter hack type bike, ideal. Less is more.

Finally here’s the Breast of Lamb all prepped for the oven!

Covered in Honey, herbs and spices, surrounded by stock veg, garlic and a bit of chillie. Not a bad Sunday Dinner!

Today is about bikes and kids. My aim is to get Dan pedalling without stabilisers, I’m taking them off and taking him across to the playing field to see if I can get him pedalling without them. Wish us luck!