Monday, 12 May 2014


I am incredibly proud of my hubby, who took part in the Grendon triathlon yesterday. This is him wearing his free t-shirt that he got for entering. He looks pretty happy because it was also his birthday. There may be a whiskey before him.
What was also quite brilliant was that he rode on a bike he built himself (for the cycling bit, the other bits being swimming and running/hobbling). Having found a frame at the tip, he sourced the rest of the parts separately and gradually put the bike together. I think my frugal ways may be rubbing off on him - what a moneysaver! Of course, it hasn't stopped him eyeing up the £3K bikes in Cycle Plus...

OH is cycling-obsessed these days. I think I'm catching the bug, too. Last week I found myself reading and very much enjoying The Bluffers Guide to Cycling - normally £6.99 but currently free on Kindle. Using this guide, I have identified my husband's 'cycling tribe' as MAMIL, i.e. a middle-aged man in Lycra. I don't know what I am, apart from severely grazed after I fell off onto some gravel last week. That was on the way to dinner for our anniversary, too, so I looked well with my ripped tights and scabby knees.

Ah well, Aldi had a bike stuff sale on last week, so I have  proper gloves now. I'm pretty impressed with Aldi sports gear actually. It's good quality and not very dear at all. You have to get there bang on opening time, though, as the popular stuff flies off the shelves. OH managed to grab himself a tri-suit for £15 (they're about £80 elsewhere), and when he looked again later there were only Large ones left.

Have you been following the Women's Tour? I think it has been brilliant. It has been superb watching Marianne Vos, Emma Johansson and Rossella Ratto battle for their podium spots, and we had Sharon Laws grabbing a prize for the Brits by winning overall Queen of the Mountains.

It may be the 21st century, but generally women's sport doesn't attract the same amount of coverage, sponsorship and rewards as men's, so it was great that this Tour not only offered equivalent prize money, but that the press and the public really got behind it. The first and second stages passed through our county, and OH took advantage and went to watch. Unfortunately I couldn't get the time off work myself, otherwise I would have been there, but I followed the live updates. I even spotted OH twice on other people's photos as he waited for the race to pass by his position. Here he is in Brixworth at the QOTM point.
What a brilliant thing to be a part of - and it didn't cost a bean. In Northampton, the Ministry of Bicycles had their Bomberdrome on display (awesome Wall of Death!) and there were info stands from British Cycling, Skyride and Breeze - these are organizations that seek to encourage cycling.  They organize events, guided rides and social rides for all ages and abilities, and Breeze also organizes women-only rides, and offers cycling and bike-buying advice. Have a look to see if there's something happening near you - it's free.

Cycling doesn't have to be expensive. We have bikes because we don't run a car, and so they are for leisure, fitness and boring old commuting. My first bike was a child's bike (I'm very short) and was free from a skip, and it was fine for me. I will probably use it if I ever do a duathlon. Why not? I'm not going to win...

I'm going to try to update this blog a bit more often, as I know I have readers getting frustrated with my pace of posting. You think that's slow, you should see me cycle...

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