I have actually completed two rides since my last post, thats two rides in four days, a bit of a record by recent standards. I do feel the fitness coming back slowly, but I am nowhere near where I was just over a month ago, way back in December 2014! I have done five rides so far this year, but generally too far apart to gain and retain any real benefit from them. Hopefully things are about to change
On Saturday I opted not to get up early ride over to Stony Stratford for the Team Milton Keynes C1 group ride to Winslow. There had been some discussion on the Forum on the clubs website for the 24hours previous about whether the ride would go to Stowe or Winslow. The chosen venue by Friday night was Winslow. Not feeling quite ready for a full blown club ride I decided to make my own way to Winslow direct from home and meet the group at the cafe.I stayed in bed a bit longer while the roads warmed up and then made my own way over to Winslow, arriving there at about 11:30am so that I would be there when they rolled up.
When I entered Jenny Wrens cafe in Winslow I found the ‘B’ group sitting there. I joined them for a chat, coffee and a toasted tea cake while I waited for C1 group. By 12:15 it was obvious they were not coming so I made my own way back. I had been hoping to able to benefit from the shelter of a group ride for the return to Stony Stratford at least as it had been hard work on the outward leg against the wind. However It was not to be but I did have the benefit of a tailwind to push me home. A very welcome push it was too.
It had been long solo ride of about fifty miles but I managed OK and definitely felt better and more encouraged than I had felt on my recent rides.
On Saturday evening I checked the clubs forum page and saw that they had actually had a discussion before the ride and opted to go to Salcey Forest as the roads were suspected of being icy out the other side of Stony Stratford. I have to say I didn’t notice any ice on my ride but the road was wet and riding into the low sun and the wind was not a pleasant experience. On my way back though I did notice a car on its side in a ditch as I approached Stony Stratford so maybe it was icy earlier.
Today I did another fifty mile loop from home with Towcester Racecourse being the furthest point. I had chosen the route to benefit from a tailwind on the return half. I even managed to get a couple of photographs on the way round.
This one is of the Grand Union Canal at Stoke Bruerne. It is home to a nice cafe, where I didn’t stop and a canal museum. It is also at the southern end of the Blisworth Tunnel where in the days of horse drawn barges the bargees had to lay on on their backs on the roof of the barges and ‘walk’ along roof of the tunnel to propel the barges with their feet the nearly 3 miles of the tunnel. The horses meanwhile were walked over the hills to Blisworth to meet up at the other end.
This picture is also of the Grand Union Canal but a few miles further south at Old Wolverton, just north of Milton Keynes. The only claim to fame I can think of here is that when I first moved to North Buckinghamshire in 1966 I lived about 400 yards from this bridge. It was in a brand new house that we bought for the princely sum of £3250!! It was before the electrification of the London-Midland main railway line from Euston and also before the announcement of the birth of Milton Keynes. Due to these announcements we managed to sell the house about five years later for around £10,500 when we moved to Olney, and here I have stayed in a variety of houses ever since.
I ended the ride feeling not so bad as the previous rides so thats a good sign I guess. I think there will be a few more ‘not feeling so bad’ rides before I progress to the ‘I am feeling better’ rides.