A Look Back at the 2011 Cycling Season
In my last blog, you’ll remember that I went through a phase where I was obsessing about floaters. Unfortunately, the perfect weather conditions never arrived for me to improve on my PB – or, at least, not on the days when I was racing!
Since then, I’ve eased off my floater obsession and moved back to a more general obsession about cycling – the normal state of affairs for most of us fanatical cyclists.
Some of you will know that, over the past months, I’ve had a lot of problems with my throat and ended up seeing a throat specialist who told me I had nodules and swollen vocal chords. My situation wasn’t helped by an infection which made me ill for a few weeks back in July, bringing my fitness back to square one. This also spelt the end of my racing season – although I hadn’t planned on doing much more after that anyway.
As far as gadding about in the campervan is concerned, we haven’t gone as far afield this year and we haven’t used the van so extensively for cycling events. Generally, we’ve cut back on our more lengthy journeys due to the rising petrol prices (and the fact that our van is a bit of a fuel-guzzler!).
RACKS, RAIN & RUST
Recently, I had my bike serviced. This revealed that stowing my bike on the back of the campervan hadn’t done it much good… Torrential rain whilst we’d been away one time had meant that water had got into the bottom bracket and headset and rusted it out. Having now replaced those components, I would certainly make sure we put a cover over the bikes if we took them away with us again.
However, a cover does mean restricted visibility out the back window, which is an unfortunate trade-off. In any case, we’ve usually ended up doing more walking than cycling on our trips away, so we might not bother taking the bikes with us so much in future.
Next year, I aim to do some sportives as well as time-trialling and not put all my eggs in one basket (as I did this year), so the campervan may end up being gainfully employed during sportive season as a mobile B&B again after all.
Of course, driving to an event the night before means I can wake up fresh for a race. It also means that my long-suffering Cycling Widow (Alannah) has the added bonus of being able to have a bit of a ‘holiday’ whenever I go to a sportive. At least, that’s what I think. Not sure whether she sees it the same way, though…
In any case, you can find out more about what Alannah thinks about my cycling lark (and the cycling world in general) in her now-released Cycling Widows book – published with Smashwords. (Click on the link to find out more.)
Our next few campervan adventures (no cycling involved, I’m afraid!) will focus more on local day trips, so stay tuned for our next stop-off in the Land of Arthurian Legend…