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I had a couple of good solo mid-week rides and a training ride with Team MK this morning.  I am riding on my ‘winter bike’ now.  It is still quite responsive despite the extra few pounds heavier.  It’s polite to use a bike with mudguards at this time of year if you are riding with others as it protects them from the spray from your wheels when its wet.

Specialized Allez - 'Winter/Spare' Bike (Former best bike)

Todays ride was my first club ride on the winter bike and I wondered how it might affect my performance and the answer was ‘not very much’.  I seemed to be able to maintain my usual place near the front of the bunch OK.  Mind you. most of them were on winter bikes too. Some were still on carbon fibre racers but we all stayed pretty much together.  I had a bit of a scare on a bend on one of the descents.  I had to apply my back brake as I was getting a bit too close to the guy in front and my back wheel locked and started to go away from me but I managed to recover it ok.  It’s a risky time of year for speedy descents around bends with the wet roads and fallen leaves !!

I am managing to get my average speed into the 17mph range on my solo rides now which is on the increase.  I am getting used to riding harder for longer.  Despite my best intentions for this time of year I cant seem to just take it easy on a ride if I am alone.   I dont get to stop for photo opportunities as I get obsessed with the average speed .   On Wednesday on the way out I was averaging around 19mph on the way out but on the return leg into the wind and also the hillier part of the ride I was watching the average speed fall away like a clock ticking but managed to bring it home at 17.3mph average.