Things I’ve Learnt Through Cycling

I’ve learnt a lot since taking up cycling. I’ve learnt a lot about the mechanics of a bike, I’ve learnt a lot about the importance of the cake stop, I’ve learnt a lot about the camaraderie between complete strangers that cycling facilitates and I’ve learnt a lot about myself and how far I can push this knackered old carcass. If I had to pick my top 3 things that I’ve learnt, they would be as follows

  1. Though a physical pursuit, mental strength can push you to heights you never thought possible
  2. Adam snores – a lot!
  3. Don’t ride when you’re ill.

The third one on that list is what brings me to this post as, a while back, I learnt this the hard way. I’d been suffering all week with a bog standard cold, not enough to keep me off work but enough for it to be incredibly annoying. The weekend was heralded by a glorious, sunny morning and I was feeling better so I decided to make the most of it and headed out on my bike. There is a Strava segment that I mention a lot (you’ll notice), not 3 miles from my house, called ‘Nasty Little Rise’ which, as the name suggests, is enough to get the heart and legs pumping nicely. On that particular day that segment took every ounce of energy out of my body, at the top of the rise I had to dismount and sit down because I was fearing the dreaded ‘bonk’. I’d started to feel a bit feint and not at all right so I turned tail and headed back home. Lesson learnt – don’t ride when you’re ill.

This week I’ve been ill. A similar situation to the above with an annoying cold that has gone round the office laying waste to even the hardiest of souls. Remembering my previous mistake I shelved my plans for a Saturday ride in favour of a turbo session in the shed (it rained anyway so I didn’t feel so bad). I’ve got the setup just about right now


The turbo trainer set up in my shed

I have the Tacx Flow T2240 Smart trainer (which I bought for £200 from Halfords) linked up to Zwift on my Macbook via a Wahoo Blue SC speed and cadence sensor. I also bought the Wahoo Tickr heart rate monitor, mostly through curiosity rather than knowing what to do with the data! All I need now is a floor standing fan to keep me cool as it gets warm in that little shed, whatever the weather outside!

I did a 10 mile warm up, about half an hour, on the Watopia flat route as I wasn’t sure how I’d manage but I felt ok so I was pleased. I then did a few intervals to try and really blow the cold away. I managed a few, 4 minutes average speed then 30 seconds full gas, so in the circumstances I considered that a triumph!


Hopefully I can get rid of the cold so I can get out on my bike before we go away on holiday on Thursday!


About iamiain

Now 40, cycling novice. Conquered London to Paris in 2017, now training for the Prudential Ride London-Surrey 100 in 2018
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