Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Cycling For Parents

With my tour to Switzerland less than 3 months away, I've been struggling get in regular rides, let alone longer routes.

Being a new parent is obviously a major factor - apart from being tired, I'm preparing most of the meals which makes evening rides tricky.  Plus it's busy at work and there are endless jobs on the house and garden at weekends.

Plus I don't have a commute to give me regular rides any more, like I did when I lived in London - the 100 feet to the bottom of the garden isn't quite the same.

Every new year seems like starting from scratch as I build up the distances for the summer tour, but this year seems particularly tough.  This is how I felt in February...

 © Cristina Del Moral & James Murphy
Old Chinese Cyclist (Photo © Cristina Del Moral & James Murphy) 

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Off-Topic Post: The Joy of Veg

This post may not be about cycling, but I'd like to think it ties into the same sort of world view...

The empty shelves in the fruit section of our local supermarket (thanks to the current volcanic ash flight restrictions) only serve to reinforce how reliant we as a country are on imported food.

But like many people lucky enough to have access to some outside space, we grow some of our own veg, admittedly with mixed success.

Some of our home-grown veg
We started a few years back and have expanded to produce quite a bit of our summer and autumn needs - salad, herbs (rosemary, sage, basil, mint, etc), spuds, carrots, courgettes, beans, onions, cucumbers, cabbages and cauliflowers.  Although many of them get eaten by slugs and pigeons before we can get to them, of course...

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Cannondale Lefty For Sale...

Spent a bittersweet few hours last weekend getting my Cannondale Lefty ready to sell - cleaning it up, servicing everything and turning it back into a full-on mountain bike with riser bars and knobbly tyres.

It's a fantastic bike that I absolutely love, but with the current one-in-one-out policy it's got to go to make way for the new touring bike.

It's in amazing nick - the custom paint job is immaculate (I can't stand the recent Cannondale paint jobs and decals, so had mine re-done), the rear wheel, brakes (Shimano XT, far better than the original Hayes efforts) and drive train are virtually new and the fork has been serviced recently.  The tyres were taken off in the shop before I even took it home.

I mean, who wouldn't love this?  Oh well, I'll be putting it up on ebay in the next couple of weeks and somebody will be getting themselves a bargain...

Cannondale Lefty

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

More from Danny MacAskill

If you haven't heard of Danny MacAskill, he's an amazing trial bike rider who does the most incredible tricks you can imagine - who knew it was even possible to do a front-wheelie going backwards, for example?!

He released a fantastic video last year, shot in Edinburgh. Now he's gone one better in Chamonix: