142.74 average

the weather is 100% summery so we thought we’d go and do a day ride. For some bizarre reason I thought we’d do My Nemesis: a particularly vicious hill. The kind where you don’t get tired so much, you just run out of the requisite power to turn that pedal one more stroke. It’s all about muscle rather than fitness. It is steep and it’s on grass.

The route there is pretty nice. Traffic-free mostly and terrific views over the rolling fields. You start off cyling up hill, then you are on a ridge looking down, then a major road to cross and then – the nemesis. It’s the toughest hill I’ve done and I wanted to see whether I could still manage it.

Well, I did but it was very close to impossible. At times I thought I might not manage another pedal stroke. It’s made worse by the all the climbing down to get there in the first place. Those hills are less fierce but still sapping.

Somehow, though,  I made it and we had the world’s greatest picnic at the top, which I was carrying on an already heavy touring bike. It’s quiet gratifying to see fit-looking fellas getting off and pushing their (much lighter) bikes where I’ve just cycled up under my own power. I’m iron-woman!

This particular ride to the beacon is especially great because (somewhat unusually) you get a downhill where you barely need to touch your brakes. You can see far ahead to know it’s safe and can really get up some speed. There is a slight rise before you hit the main road so you’re not likely to go flying into traffic, either.

It was pure elation going down, knowing I’ve earned it. Weeeeeee!!!! and we cycled through the next town and onto the next Beacon. This is a famous one and feared. Cyclists in lycra often do special trips to go up this one. We could either go up it or around it. I thought “heck, why not” and we cycled up it. It is much easier than the previous one we did and for the most part you get a worthwhile downhill afterwards.

All in all we did nearly 40 miles, it took us more than 4 hours because of all those hills and I felt on top of the world for having achieved it all.

Of course, all that exercise will mean a weight gain, sadly. I know, I know. It makes no sense, right? but that’s always what happens. It’s a fast day tomorrow. Hopefully that’ll prevent too much of a gain.

Eat: milk tea | water | 1 rasher bacon | 1 eggy bread | toast | ciabatta w/ pepperoni, emmenthal cheese, mozzarella, sun dried tomatoes| strawberries| banana muffin| sirloin steak | potatoes | kale | carrots | melting chocolate puds.

exercise: 4.5 hours cycling – very hilly – 2 beacons