Saturday, 15 November 2008

Counting down

At the end of last week I had done 2,562 miles since the beginning of the year (or to be more precise, since the end of January, when I got the new bike). I would like to reach 3,000 miles by the end of the year. 

From today to the end of the year I have six full weeks to close the 438 mile gap plus a few extra days to make up any shortfall. So I am reckoning on trying to cover at least 73 miles a week from now to Boxing Day. That leaves a few days contingency at the end of December in case I fall short. 

Since the end of January I have been averaging 61 miles a week, so I need to up the pace slightly if I am going to make it. With unpredictable weather, and shorter days, not to mention Christmas, it is going to be a bit of a challenge.

Today I set out with the aim of covering at least 40 miles by looping round through Marlow and Lane End to Stokenchurch, then back to Marlow through Hambleden and Fingest. I reckon that the section through Fingest and Hambleden is some of the nicest countryside around here for a ride. By going via Lane End and Stokenchurch I touched some of the areas that haven't yet been thoroughly covered on Open Street Map. I managed to collect some GPS traces so I can add a few missing roads.

The weather was pretty good: it stayed dry, and although it was windy, I was blessed with sun on the way out, and for the last part of the return journey, with grey skies in between.

There were quite a few cyclists out. I saw one big club run, and several people riding on their own, like me. One man was transporting long planks on his shoulder, while riding, which looked a bit precarious. Apart from the club (who were all pedalling furiously with their heads down), everyone was very friendly. As usual we were calling out "good morning" to each other, well into the afternoon. 

A year ago it was rare for me to overtake anyone else on a bike, but over the last year either I have speeded up, or the rest of the world has slowed down, because normally these days I overtake a proportion - though more overtake me. Today, either I was going slowly again,  or the general pace was higher than normal, since I was overtaken repeatedly, without overtaking anyone myself.

By the time I got home I had covered 41 miles. If I manage to fit in three more local rides in the next six days I will be keeping on track to reach 3,000 miles. So at least this week is off to a good start. More importantly, it was a fun outing, and I enjoyed myself.

1 comment:

Fat Lad said...

good luck fella!