After running on Tuesday and Thursday, it was back to the turbo on Friday. I was pinched for time so just 30 minutes but ridden quite hard; sadly, the speed was registered at 29.9kph by Strava.
After a day in the garden I went out on the bike late on Saturday – it wasn’t a difficult decision as it was that or the turbo trainer. I rode for just over 36km (22.5 miles) in 80 minutes and managed to take it reasonably sensibly … apart from the two times I found myself behind other road cyclists who, I could tell, really wanted to be chased and overtaken.
A bit pathetic for an old man? Guilty as charged.
The big problem, of course, is that once you overtake, you then have to push on hard for the next couple of miles to avoid looking like an idiot as they, effortlessly, cruise back past you.
One of them was down on his tri-bars which made the chase harder but also made me realise that I should refit mine. I am currently cycling alone and in relatively light traffic so it would be pretty safe and why turn down the couple of free kph that they tend to offer?
On matters ‘aero’, I’m still grappling with whether I should get a pair of deep rim carbon wheels. Although I don’t cycle at an average of 20mph (32kph, the speed at which they are said to come into their own) I do spend a reasonable amount of time at that speed – so they might be a genuine benefit (to everything but my bank balance).
I know a gentleman in Michigan and another in Tasmania who would consider that decision to be a total no-brainer.
On Sunday morning I ran with my wife – she wanted to do the local Strava hill segment again (competitive juices flowing strongly). We did that and then I ran on to do some laps around Badbury Clump for a total run of 8.3km (just over 5 miles).
The car park there has been shut during the lockdown so, although the whole area itself has been open, it’s been fairly deserted and a joy to run in. The car park has now reopened and was full – but at least the people were well spread out and social distancing was not an issue.
For some reason Strava hasn’t recorded the segment we ran but I can work out a time from the maps and the route tracker – she blitzed her previous time by between 10 and 15 seconds. What a performance.
Some years ago we ran the “Town and Gown” 10km race in Oxford three years in succession. It’s a great course through the city centre and the aim was for my wife to break the hour barrier. We managed 58 minutes odd on our last attempt – I’m working on getting her to enter next year but it’s an uphill battle.
The rest of Sunday will be spent mowing and playing croquet. It’s what Sundays were made for.
Stocktake after 8 weeks of lockdown
- weight – 68 kg (decent)
- resting pulse – 48 bpm (fair)
- hair – long, grey and unkempt (but at least I don’t have to worry about the roots being a different colour)
- mental health – entirely unchanged (not sure if that is good or bad, but I tend to put it down to a sad lack of imagination on my part)
- running – OK, I’m enjoying it a lot, but I’m not doing any great distances (perhaps it’s a good thing the ultra marathon is postponed to 2021)
- cycling – moderate at best (how on earth did I ever get fit enough to ride out to to the alps, let alone do the ‘Everest’?)
- Achilles tendons, fine; calf muscles, fine; left knee, not fine
- garden – better than ever.
Interesting things this week
1. African proverb: A frog’s happiness comes with the rains.
… and who doesn’t like a happy frog?
2. The Dutch government has issued new guidance to single people seeking intimacy during the pandemic, advising them to find a ‘sex buddy’.
The National Institute for Health and the Environment said that ‘Sex with yourself or with others at a distance is possible’.
I see the Dutch in an entirely new (red) light.
3. Steve Linick: Trump fires state department inspector general
I’m starting to feel left out because the President hasn’t bothered to fire me (yet).
4. With the division’s season coming to an early end, our local football club (Swindon Town) is set to be promoted and crowned Champions. Not how anyone would have wanted it to end – but we’ll take it.
Confirmed cases of Coronavirus for Oxfordshire: population c. 690,000
14/3 – 22
21/3 – 44 (x2 from previous week)
28/3 – 113 (x2.5)
4/4 – 356 (x3.2)
11/4 – 653 (x1.8)
18/4 – 1070 (x1.6)
25/4 – 1336 (x1.25)
2/5 – 1540 (x1.15)
9/5 – 1688 (x1.09)
16/05 – 1902 (1.13)