Progress so far...

June 30th 2009 - 22 stone 4Ibs. Current weight - 17 stone 1Ib. Weight loss - 5 stone 3Ibs. Commuting miles - 3389.
Non commuting miles - 359. Mileage this week - 101 miles. Total mileage - 3748 miles.

Friday, 16 July 2010


Yesterday's pedal home was without doubt the worst I have endured since I started back pedalling over a year ago.

The reason was a terrific headwind, it felt like I was permanently pedalling with the brakes on. The out of the saddle blast up Frankley Beeches, while still out of the saddle was reduced to a crawl, when I had the energy to look at my computer, it read a mighty 6.3mph. No matter how hard I tried I just couldn't get any momentum.

The ride through Kitwell towards the end of the pedal was getting dangerous too, the wind was coming up the side roads and hitting me side on so hard it was blowing me into the middle of the road I was pedalling on. It was that hazardous at one point I seriously thought about getting off and walking!

The result of this was that I was absolutely shattered when I got home. I spent all evening trying to contribute to family life struggling to stay awake and feeling physically drained. I suppose at some level it must have done me some good though. Just can't quite work out what yet.

Stats here, and they make ugly reading:

Started: 15 Jul 2010 15:03:17
Ride Time: 59:47
Stopped Time: 0:00
Distance: 11.72 miles
Average: 11.71 miles/h
Fastest Speed: 38.93 miles/h
Climb: 361 feet
Calories: 773

As predicted I'm in the car this morning as the Technophobe of a client can't get his head around a teleconference. I'm a bit pissed off as I was looking for another full weeks commute and a good night's sleep has sorted me out. Physically I could have pedalled this morning no problem.

Although I haven't mentioned it yet, I have been watching every highlights program of The Tour on ITV4 . And very enjoyable it has been too. I felt I must comment on the removal yesterday of Mark Cavendish's lead out man on Team HTC Columbia, Mark Renshaw.

I thought it was a disgraceful descision and a complete over reaction.

My take on it was that the rider who was on Renshaw's right during the final run in deliberately leaned into him to try to gain an advantage, Renshaw quite rightly was not having any of it and physically contested the road position. Here is where Renshaw made his error, he used his head to push the other rider away, that looks for all the world like a head butt which is unacceptable in any sport and looks terrible. He then made his second error, that of blocking the rider on the inside, he must have been very angry about what had happened and decided to try and stop any body from getting around him. He needn't have done that as Cav was flying and was never going to be caught, but I guess his Aussie blood was up. And having played with and against Aussies at rugby I can confirm they're all aggressive buggers!

These blokes are competing in one of the most physically demanding events in the world, they're not babies, they're highly competive athletes who enjoy a scrap or else they wouldn't be there. To remove a rider who didn't even cause the incident in the first place is a typical over reaction by officials who need to be seen to be doing the right thing. A removal of his time for the stage would have been an appropriate sanction.

But what are they doing about the rider who started it? I think I can guess.

Onto more positive tour stuff, just check this out - It's a real time web site that displays all of HTC's riders telemetry so you can see just who is putting it in and who is coasting!

I can't take credit for finding it though, Ray the tech warlock and tri-athlete over at DC Rainmaker is the man who needs to be patted on the back for his discovery. Nice one Ray.


  1. Clive I agree one hundred percent I thought it was a joke decision I have been watching it live on Eurosport HD. They interviewed on of the judges today who said there decision took five minutes which to me seems a bit quick to me.

    That is a great real time web following HTC's riders mate.

    As for the wind it does take it out of you its like walking in sand you get nowhere fast, and has you said dangerous when very strong

  2. Head winds are often tougher than hills. The hill always has a top and then a coast back down. The head wind just keeps pressing against you. And there certainly IS a point in any wind were it's too dangerous to ride. Each rider must judge that for himself: 25 mph, 30 mph, 40 mph, but at some point you just can't control the bike and need to get off.

    Having the family SAG wagon fetch you after a breakdown or one too many flats may feel to some like the ride of shame. But no one should feel that way about getting out of dangerous weather.


    Re. the tour, I agree. All riders involved should be sanctioned and the event didn't rise to the level of complete dismissal. A few minutes tacked on to the day's official time would seem more appropriate. Or maybe hold them those few minutes after the start of the next day's ride so they have to play catchup all day.

  3. Get you and your HD, Bear!

    The decision was rubbish. The headbutt was perfectly acceptable in the light of 40mph blocking of a man who was cyclist shedloads faster. I do think that Renshaw's subsequent "drifting" to the left to block the man who later came 3rd behind Cav in the sprint was unacceptable, but sending the Australian home was a massive overreaction, since Cav won that sprint by a country mile easily and nobdy got hurt, whilst the blocking of Renshaw might have casued a serious accident.

  4. TBH, if anyone encroaches within 20m of me - I'll headbutt them.

    Bring it on judges.

  5. Clive, you average speed even with the wind is just a fraction slower then my average! The wind can be a bitch though.