It was a not a nice looking evening as I looked out of my window. I asked the Old Boy if he wanted to go out for a ride. But he has more important things on his agenda these days, while the brighter days (I use the word brighter very loosely) are here, he has decided to work on his bike, and its not the push bike either. This one has an engine!
So I could either, sit back down and play on facebook, with the silly addictive game, then 'do' dinner, or I could get my ass in gear and get out there and cycle! After all, its only next month that I will be cycling from London to Brighton!
I chose the latter, which is obvious because here I am writing up my blog! I had no idea where I was going to go, but looking at the weather it was not going to be twenty or thirty miler today! I decided on a tried and tested route, with plenty of scope to get home if the heavens open! even if they do include huge hills. But any way I go there is going to be hills!
Up the A21 I head, already the silly nursery rhymes are singing in my head. Usually I am looking at the Old Boys backside, willing him to slow down so that I don't look so slow myself, but there is no-one to watch. And so the ditties start.
It was getting more overcast as I was riding. I was hoping that it wouldn't rain just yet, because that would mean I would have to go up one of my old nemesis, Perry Hall or Poverest! As I swung round GreenStreet Green I made a decision. I am going all the way to the bypass. Up the hill there and through Chislehurst. Well I am out now, I know its not going to be mega miles, but I might as well get as much in as I can.
I do like the ride down to Orpington, it's easy going, nothing strenuous, and it helps to relax the legs in readiness the the hill at the other end! Going through the High street was a bit difficult. It was very busy, and the drivers decided that riding near the pavement would help them get away quicker. So it left the middle of the road for me to keep on moving, or I could sit behind the fume spewing cars and wait! No, I didn't think so either. I got my confidence up and I went for it. Straight down the middle of the road, cars on my left, cars on my right, moving in the opposite direction! It had to be done, passing all the cars as they were sitting in the traffic! Great fun.
So no Perry hall Road to climb up, I rode passed that, and on to Sevonoaks Way. I rode on passed Poverest, no going up there, decision made! It's the bypass for me. It has to be done. The ditties are still going around my head, lots more of them, all nursery rhymes! For twenty six years I have been singing nursery rhymes, either to my kids or to all the kids that have come through my doors! I NEED A GIRLS NIGHT OUT SOON
This road doesn't seem as busy as the high street, and of course there is the cycle path either on the road or the pavement, so it's quite a relaxing road to ride. I can see the hill rising up. It looks steeper then ever. Or is it just me getting a little tired. Do you know, right at this minute, I cant think of one of the nursery rhymes that was helping me to get up the hills, apart from Frere Jacques again! Mind you to that tune I made up loads of songs, I even put in Goosy goosy gander There that was another song that was helping me today.
So far I had cycled non stop, apart from traffic lights that is, and I had no intention of stopping now! Not till I get to the top of this hill! Then I will take a sip of my water, which I had remembered to take with me. I did try and take a sip of water while riding along, I saw a cyclist doing exactly that going in the opposite direction along Sevonoaks Way, but I just can't do it. I lose control of my bike! So I don't mind stopping at the top for just a little sip.
And now, sip! I did it. I didn't take a gander (there's that nursery rhyme again) at my watch. I knew I would be doing over ten miles today, and if felt like a good pace as well. After my quick pit stop it was onwards and upwards. Yes, upwards, because getting to to the top at the bypass is not the end of the hills!
By now though, I felt the dampness in the air. I thought maybe it was the cars passing me while they were using the window wash, that's how light the rain felt. But then it gradually got worse and worse. It wasn't huge droplets of rain, just lots of the fine rain, misting up my glasses, making me feel very uncomfortably wet! Oh well, its not far to go now.
Through Chislehurst, and I was thinking about my Tuesday run with the club. This is the road that we ran alongside, but through the woods. It's downhill. I remember while running, looking at my Garmin and realised that I had been running at 10.5 pace through there, very fast for me. I am not going to look at my watch now to see what pace I am doing, it's difficult enough as it is looking through my wet glasses.
Petts Wood Road now, wet through, but I was smiling. In fact I felt ok, I had done it, I had done an evening ride, solo, and I had not done to badly. I even decided that going through the local park has to happen as well. I'm wet anyway, it's only an extra half mile/mile, so just go for it.
Through the park and I even had a blast up Whitebeam, another tradition that the Old Boy had started.
Geek stats then, and just look at the average moving pace! Well pleased with that!