Monthly Archives: January 2011

Ow Ow! Pain!

Playing with the Spawn of Satan is risky, I’ve pretty badly hurt my back and am immobile! Owwwww…



I was too busy to clean my Giant yesterday, must get it done today!

All over the shop…

Had a bit of a disturbed night’s sleep last night. For some reason late yesterday afternoon my neck started to ache like buggery, so much it kept me awake. Haven’t a clue what I’ve done to it. Wifey thinks the cold ride yesterday morning might have got to it. Whatever caused it, I don’t like it! I have to say though, yesterday’s pedal was tough!

I enjoyed the traditional Dodford Friday evening, Richard the gaffer stuck “Happy Birthday to you” on the sound system and brought out a miniature cake with a candle on it! The whole pub sand along which was a laugh. I don’t think too many of them will be doing singing for a living!

I’ve reserved prime spot at the end of the bar for next Friday’s Wales v England 6 Nations game. My mate Ski will be accompanying me. So that’ll be a quiet one then…

Bike cleaning takes centre stage today. The Giant is gopping and needs plenty TLC, obviously after we’ve done whatever wifey has in store.

Also hoping to get in England A v Italy A this afternoon. It’s on Sky at 3:00 pm, which is the proper time for sport! None of this lunchtime or evening kick off crap! What’s that all about then!

So, a good disciplined week of pedalling and grub is over. Weigh in next Friday, so I need to keep the hammer down next week too.

Sneaky 25 before breakfast!

Not in the office today as I’ve a site visit to go to, which means I’ve hi-jacked the family car. It also meant I was up early doors to get my pedal in. I went on my road bike over to Solihull, then over to the Balti Belt via Acocks Green and came back along the Pershore Road, Longbridge and home.

It was bloody freezing! Plus a North Easterly wind to contend with. I didn’t enjoy it, but feeling very pleased with myself that I got out and did it!

That’s 6 straight days of pedalling now, all on my road bike too. I’ve also done all my excercises when I get in and been good with the grub. It’s going well. Next Friday is weigh in time. I’m hoping to have clawed the madness of December back and be back to where I started before the insanity hit.

Thanks for all the birthday wishes on Facebook, email, text and on here, it is appreciated!

Facebook prompting..

How’s this for sad then?

Last night via Facebook, the wife of a very old Army mate sent me a message saying “And what are you doing tomorrow?”

We do have the odd Facebook chat every now and again so the fact she was chatting to me wasn’t unusual. So with a bit of puzzlement I responded, “work by push bike as usual, why?”

She responded “47?”

I’d totally forgotten that it is indeed my birthday today and I’ll be 47 years old. I’m not bothered by age at all, I don’t get wound up like some folks I know about a number relating to the year they were born. I’m not a kiljoy either, I’ll celebrate birthdays with the best of them, but when my birthday falls on a working day, it loses all significance. Well it does for me anyway.

So, Happy Birthday to me. No doubt I’ll celebrate over the weekend.

I pedalled in this morning into a pretty strong headwind and a bit of sleet too. I’m now hoping the wind stays strong as it’ll blow me home later…Fat chance…

Phill can now launch at me with abandon after I had a gentle dig about him not cleaning his bike after a pedal. The state of my Giant Defy is disgraceful after the 43 miler last Sunday and a weeks worth of winter commuting. But, it only has this afternoon and tomorrow to go before it gets the TLC it needs!

This is it parked up in the factory at work this morning. Shameful…

Winning! TCUP and ZIGZAG…

I have very deliberately nicked the title from Sir Clive Woodward’s book as the first word of title of this post. Basically his book is the story of his life in rugby up to the point where his England side win the 2003 Rugby World Cup. As a rugby fanatic it was one of the greatest days of my life, the celebrations went on all day and into the night. It was handy the game was played in Australia as it meant more time partying for us Poms!

His book is so much more than a rugby story though. It goes into some length the detail and planning it took to get his squad into the final, in a position to win it with his best 15 starting the game. It is fair to say he left no stone unturned in the pursuit of this goal. Indeed he was known as the mad professor by his players for some of the things he’d try in a bid to succeed. some worked some didn’t along the way.

It is also fair to say that most top sides now use his blueprint to some extent or another in their preparations. I’m sure my Celtic cousins or my relations from the Southern Hemisphere might disagree though! God forbid the English ever had a good idea!

If you’ve read this far you’re probably getting bored and starting to think “what has all this got to do with weight loss cycling?” 

The connection is that Sir Clive Woodward had a plan every time he did anything and every time his players took the field. We have plans too, indeed every blog I’ve read since Christmas has been replete with plans as to how the person is going to succeed or to win their own battle.

It’s easy to win at the moment for us, the year is new, we’re all pretty much into the early stages of our “new plan” and we’re cruising. It’s all good. Sir Clive Woodward identified this too. He also identified that games were won and lost when the pressure came on. He had a few mantras that he’d use with his squad, one of them was “controlling the controllables.”

I suppose the weight loss equivalent is “doing what you can, what you know to be right” and letting the scales take care of themselves. This is an ideal saying for static weight weeks. Which we’ve all had.

His other mantra and one that is so apt for us is “TCUP” this translates as


I’m betting now we’re all thinking about that bad day at work or at home when the take away is calling, or that trip to the pub beckons, or the party buffet looks fantastic and your will starts to weaken.

This is when the pressure comes and the game is won or lost and we need to TCUP!

His squad had any number of stratagies they’d use when the pressure was on to make it easy for themselves, so they didn’t panic and do the wrong thing.

The final move in the game where they set up that famous drop goal for Jonny Wilkinson was automatic, it was a play called “zig zag” and they all knew exactly what to do in the most pressurised of environments for their sport. The last 3 minutes of extra time of a rugby world cup final. It doesn’t get any more pressurised than that for a rugby player. The move ran on rails and even Matt Dawson and Martin Johnson were that in the zone they even were thinking clearly enough for a bit of improvisation to make things better for their team.

Can we do the weight loss equivalent of that? We need to think clearly under pressure. We need a zigzag.

When is your most pressurised moment when you head to the fridge or the take away menu knowing that you’re about to do the wrong thing and can’t stop yourself? What strategy do you have in place to stop yourself? What is your “zigzag” plan?

Gentle reader, this is the moment we win or lose. Not when we’re sat smugly eating healthily, or having returned from a really good pedal or even blogging truimphantly about how great we are with our current plan and eating habits. No, we win when everything is going to rat shit and we can’t be arsed to do the right thing. That is the defining moment for us and that is when we need a zigzag.

This is what Winning! Looks like…

Tripping the light fantastic

Or rather my front light went tumbling down the road on the descent from Frankley Beeches this morning. I hit a pothole hard and it shook and broke the bloody thing off. The road is rural so there were no street lights. I had to stop and wait for cars to come down the road so their headlights would illuminate the road for me to see the bits’n’pieces, case, batteries and clips etc. Eventually I found all the necessary pieces and put them back together. But the holder was broken which meant I had to complete the rest of the ride with the light wedged between my left hand and brake hood. Not ideal but was a requirement given the carelessness of other road users.

A bit of tape and a washer here at work and it’s now secure back on my handlebars. The impact cracked the main holder where the retaining screw locates. The holder itself is irrepairable, but I’ve got it functional now so no harm done I guess. I’m just glad I didn’t puncture when I hit!

It seems there’s always something happening, some problem to fix or issue to negotiate. Can life not be simple and straightforward? Rhetorical question there, don’t bother answering!

Yesterday’s pedal, core and upper body excercises all went as they should. Also the grub was dealt with efficiently too. I still seem to be coping ok with that.

The only slight downer, nothing major I hasten to add, is a case of saddle soreness and an aching right quad. It looks like Sunday’s pedal has had an effect after all, all be it slightly delayed.

Well, I ain’t getting any younger!