You’ve probably already read a few blogs about the Manchester to Blackpool bike ride on Sunday, so I’m just going to mention a few of my personal highlights and hope that you identify with them too.
Bumping Into Friends
Despite not quite meeting at the start as we’d planned, Jon of Riding The Moor fame arrived at the Standish rest stop just after I did. His chat, his encouragement and his Ibuprofen were very welcome for the next 25 miles or so. As he contemplated heading off whilst I checked my blood sugars, Emma came over so we enjoyed a few minutes, then she bought me a brew as Jon buggered off. I must say that it was the nicest brew I’ve had in a long time, and the company was good too!
I packed just 2 SIS gels and 2 Decathlon-special ceral choccy banana bars. A good porridge breakfast at home was consumed and I didn’t test my sugar until my first break, 25 miles in at Standish. It was 3.3 mmol/l (59.4 in American) – Whoops! I hastily necked one of the gels and one of the bars with my litre of water.
At Preston, another 18 miles or so later, I tested again. This time, 5.5 mmol/l (99 to our friends over the water). Cool! I may actually have found a system! The final gel and cereal bar went down along with the brew Emma bought me.
So from now on, my secret is 20g CHO in gel form plus 29g CHO in complex form per 20 miles of hard riding. Sorted. I’ll work with it for few rides and let you know how it works. Or how long I’m in the hospital for 😉
Not Getting Off.
There’s a steep hill just outside Kirkham, about 50 miles or so into the ride. It’s not nice. I managed it in 2nd gear. Yes, second gear. Normally that’s just too bloody spinnyto even contemplate, but on Sunday the granny ring was my friend.
On the front at Lytham, the wind was ridiculous. I was actually buffeted. Sometimes the windfeels a bit gusty but, bloody hell, the wind on Sunday was in fine form! The only benefot was from a beaty point of view. I mean, riding North along the coast meant that the skin on the left side of my face is now wonderfully exfoliated – ladies, take note! If you ever want beautifully smooth skin, ride by the coast on a b*stard of a windy day! Another half an hour of that and I’ve have looked like Skeletor.
Achieving A Goal.
It’s 9 years since i completed the Manchester to Blackpool bike ride. On Sunday, it felt better than ever. I’ve raised about £300 for the Hospice where my Mum and I said goodbye, and I’ve made some fantastic friends in the process of getting myself motivated to do it. I’m proud of myself, my family are proud of me and my Mum would be proud too.
Thanks, all of you. Here’s the map.