Wednesday 19 August 2009

Wednesday 19th August

Today I rode all 24 miles, 12 in and 12 back after work.

This morning started really well, I felt really strong and I was cruising along through Wimbledon at 19 / 20 MPH. After half a mile though I got a really bad puncture, the whole tyre deflated in about 10 seconds – not ideal at 17 MPH.

It turns out that a considerate builder had left some smashed tiles in the gutter of the road and had pierced about a half centimetre gash in my rear tyre.

Luckily last week when I got my last puncture I bought a spare inner tube and some tyre levers. I did wonder about going back home and getting the train in but after a bit of dithering I changed the tube.

I’ve not done this since I was about 10 and I found it a bit fiddly. It took about 20 minutes but this includes the dithering time and the time I spent looking for what had caused the damage (and clearing the tiles up as best I could). I’m sure if it happens again I’ll be able to change the next one a fair bit quicker.

I had to use my portable pump to fill the tyre up and it wasn’t actually as bad as I thought it would be. I only filled it up to around 60 psi instead of the normal 90 but that was hard enough and the portable pump was starting to struggle at that pressure.

When I had fixed the tyre I set off again and had a pretty good ride. I took a different route in to avoid the hills on my normal route and I think for the way in this is the way to go. I basically followed the Northern Line all the way from Wimbledon South along Tooting High Street.

I did manage to get lost later on the route though. I took the wrong exit off the Elephant and Castle roundabout then changed my mind about what the best way back to London Bridge was. This little detour added about a mile onto the journey.

Despite all these delays (and leaving late in the first place) I still managed to get to my desk for just after 8:00.

On the way home I left work at about 5:00 – I got in later and I had a longer than usual lunch. I started off pretty well but it was very very hot – about 31 degrees C so I soon slowed down.

The heat, having cycled 13 miles already and the extra traffic due to leaving later all added up to make it a pretty hard ride back. On 3 separate occasions I also had to come skidding to a halt as people stepped out in front of me without seeing me. It is so annoying and tiring when people do that – it’s not tiring going fast, getting to that speed is what tires you out.

Tomorrow I’ll be cycling the whole way in again if everything goes to plan – although it is supposed to be very wet so we’ll have to see.

O: HRav:143 kCal:803 D:13.1 Av:13.9 Max:24.5 T:56:20.6
R: HRav:146 kCal:835 D:12.0 Av:12.6 Max:24.4 T:57:10.9

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