07 January 2011

Cycling update

All the snow in December really cut down the cycling I could do. Even when a quick ride was possible, the temperature was so low that I barely got warmed up before it was time to finish, and then all the stretching needed to stop these old limbs of mine seizing up meant that all I could really do was remind my muscles of what it's like. Meanwhile, of course, the Christmas food'n'booze was transforming itself into fat: useful supplies for the hungry depths of winter if I were a caveman, but a bit of a nuisance in the age of Ocado.

One thing I noticed is that the tyres were a bit spongy, so earlier this week bought myself a proper track pump. I've never had something like this before, but it's brilliant. About five strokes and the tyres are pumped up to 55 psi. Oh, but then the rain! So I've been stressing out watching the sky until today, when the rain stopped and I was able to get out. (It's also quite a bit milder.)

Even my unexercised legs felt the difference in the firmer tyres and by the time I'd warmed up I was able to use one gear higher than I'd previously done. Still only a short ride as the sky was, in James Joyce's dad's words, as uncertain as a baby's bottom. Tomorrow is supposed to be dryer still, so maybe at last I'll get out for a longer ride again.

Sorry that this post is, for regular cyclists, a statement of the bleedin obvious. But, hey, motorists - maybe your tyres need more air too. It would be a really simple way to improve your mpg. And no, you can't borrow my pump.

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