Sunday, 30 September 2007

Sunday night post - nothing to report

Not much happening today - did about thirty miles overall on the bike. This morning went on the bike up to Thorpe then across to Tissington (beautiful little village and estate) down to the ford and back down to Fenny Bentley, across top of Ashbourne, down through Mappleton and back home through Okeover Park. A nice ride if a little hilly and a little slow - but am getting back into it after ten days and it was rather cold!!

In the afternoon began work on a new project. Phil brought a mountain bike frame back from the dustcart yesterday - it's got no wheels, the right hand crank arm is jiggered, rear derailleur is bent out of shape, brake blocks need replacing and that's just the start - but by golly it is light and the components that don't need replacing (and there must be some) look pretty good - it's an aluminium framed Raleigh Incognito - will post a picture soon. Have nicked wheels off Janette's bike for now - she knows though so it's cool!!

Saturday, 29 September 2007

Saturday Morning Spin

Didn't get up til 6:30 this morning - was awake at 5:20 as normal but didn't get out of bed for another hour - lazy toad eh!!

Was on my two wheeled self propelled stallion for the first time in ten days and wasn't sure whether I'd remember the technique. Imagine my surprise to find it's just like riding a bike!!! (Have been reading the very rude but very funny website this week - love the top tips and letterbocks - truly great but be warned very, very rude in places!!).

Did a steady 13.5mph for 22 and a little bit miles and went exactly to the route planned - see last night's post. Also tested out my new cycling gear - pic below, don't laugh at the spindlier legs than on the 2006 model sid....

Friday, 28 September 2007

All set for a return to the road

Have been pumping up the tyres, have fitted the winter mudguards, checked the lights, got me clothes ready and am going to hit the road early doors tomorrow morning. Am not sure exactly how far but am thinking of riding out along the Derby Road to Kirk Langley then west towards Thurvaston, Hungry Bentley (need to check if it's still Hungry), out to Cubley and then back down to Clifton. Not sure of how long it'll be but it's a new route so should be a bit of fun and you can't beat a triangular route - three is a magic number and all that!!!

Then it's get ready time for what will be a must-win game for Derby. Bolton must be beaten or it's going to be a mega uphill struggle. Am hoping Oakley scores as he's in my Fantasy Football side.

Thursday, 27 September 2007

Wahey - Bargain cycling gear at Aldi.

Wahey - Bargain cycling gear at Aldi. Went into Aldi this afternoon and got two cycling shirts for £7 each, winter cycling trousers for a tenner, lightweight hi-viz jacket for a tenner and some cycling gloves for £3. Phil says he wants a shirt too so am going back tomorrow. Recommend you get some quick if you're interested Aldi have a tendency to under-stock if anything and at these prices you can't go wrong!!

Week 31 Weigh In - Does not Compute!!!

Something here don't compute??

Can’t work this one out? Have lost a half pound this week, I’m weighing 14st 5.5lbs which is the lightest I’ve been in over a thousand years but … it’s a weight loss I don’t think I deserve and certainly can’t explain – with Janette away on Holiday I’ve sort of been on hols myself – have been eating things I know I shouldn’t be eating – white bread, mum’s millionaire’s shortbread (1,360 syns per 100g), the odd digestive here and there. I even had two croissants this morning rather than chuck them away (I hate wasting anything – that’s why I love Ebay – much sooner sell anything than bin it). So am utterly non-plussed on this week’s weigh-in and at the same time well happy with it. Haven’t weighed this light since my teens a good twenty years ago!

The only thing that might be a factor is that I’ve had an enforced change to my exercise regime but really that ought to have added rather than subtracted weight in terms of increased muscle. For the past ten days in Janette’s absence the cycling has stopped and been replaced by weight training, a sort of extreme step aerobics (that I mean to post more on in due course) and a new ab exercise that I’ve posted about already. Incidentally, the ab exercise I described as being from hell a few days ago doesn’t hurt anymore, weird but my abs have stopped screaming now. Think it’ll need a fews weeks of doing it before I see any benefit but that’s okay, it’s cool to do something different – might start looking at other exercises as well in a few weeks – will keep you posted.

On the down side the stats show that my weekly weight loss average is now below 2lbs per week which was always going to happen some time but still it’s sad (as Ronnie James Dio might say on a Rainbow live on stage album…probably the finest live album ever made….)

Weight data table note slipped to under 2lbs avg weekly weight loss for first time.

Weight loss chart - do you detect a slight downward slope starting again after all the flat-lining?

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

Paul Cooking in a Slimming World stylee

Now, then, there's a vicious rumour perpetuated by work colleagues and fellow members that I can only cook toast. This is only half true - it's far more accurate to say that toast is the only thing I can cook regularly without setting off the smoke alarms in three counties! And here is evidence of my cooking skills - page 20 of the new Slimming World book "100 Comfort Foods" has a recipe for a "Bacon burger with barbeque relish", here's my handiwork on it's way. The recipe gives you a burger that is gorgeous and syn-free (you have to use up a healthy extra for the wholemeal roll for it to by syn-free or count it as 6 syns which ain't bad). Not only that but you can have it on a plate in no time at all and the kids like them too (says thirty minutes in the book but you can reduce this time greatly if your mum does all the preparation legwork!!!). In fact it was so good that I had to eat it straight away instead of photograph it so I've took a picture of the picture in the book which looked exactly the same as my finished handiwork (honest*)

* No, really, it did look sort of like the picture. You could certainly identify the wholemeal roll!! Have to work out some way of offseting my carbon footprint now as the smoke created was somewhere between the output of a transatlantic 747 and your average American industrial complex!! This griddle pan thing which by the way weighs a ton really does generate some smoke!
The book is brilliant, by the way, so expect more posts on it in weeks to come! You might even get to see an 'after' photo not borrowed from the book!!!
By the way am expecting to put a pound or two on this week - although the exercise has been good have been well off track food-wise - will be okay again in a week or so though - am not going to beat myself up over it anymore

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

No post for a day then two come along together

Have noticed a new Facebook application today so have added it to my page, called WeightTracker it creates a nice sort of a graph once you've entered your weight record. And that's about it!! you can click on the pic above to see a zoomed in version.

Also may not have mentioned this but the grill in our double oven has broken down (Janette don't know yet but she's five hundred odd miles away so we're safe for now!!). Anyway my mum, bless her has bought me a griddle pan thing. It's this pan with like a corrugated sort of a base that weighs a ton, you get it red hot (not quite literally) chuck in a steak and it cooks it lovely without any oil being needed - brilliant! Will post a picture some time soon.

Also here's the video of the ab exercise from hell!!

Video doesn't seem to run like it did last week but that's probably just my computer!!!

Belated Post - New Abdominals Exercise from Hell and other stuff....

Apologies for the lack of a post yesterday - am up to my neck with looking after the kids who are being really well behaved for most of the time and absolute horrors for short period of time (tends to be between 7:00 and 8:00am in the morning when they have to be ready for school in good time for me to get to work before 9:00am.

The good news is that I now have my entry-level washing machine operation badge, shirt ironing (intermediate) and trouser ironing (basic) badges! Can also do a modicum of cooking with Phil's help and while time at the computer has been largely reduced, exercise although different hasn't been affected in terms of quantity! Have been doing anything between 200 and 400 bicep curls a day, some extreme step aerobics (post to follow on what rock music has the right tempo for a high step) and have a new bike kick exercise for abs that absolutely kills (if the "no pain, no gain" is a maxim that bears some truth then I should be gaining plenty in the six-pack area!!!).

It works like this (extracted from

Exercise #2 BIKE KICK
Lie on your back on a mat or padded carpet with knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Press the low back into the floor, engaging the abdominal muscles, as you put both hands behind your head (don't pull on the head). Bring the right elbow over to the left knee, and then bring the left elbow over to the right knee in a twisting, bicycle-pedal motion. Continue to breathe naturally. Alternate opposite elbow to opposite knee with hands interlaced behind the head in a slow and controlled manner to muscle fatigue, with full extension of the legs on every repetition.

Trainer's Notes:
Be sure to breathe naturally and not hold your breath at any time during this exercise. Full extension of the legs will increase intensity (as shown), as will performing the motion very slowly. Keep the knees bent throughout the movement, while you tap the toes to the floor (instead of extending the leg straight out), to decrease intensity.

Goal: 2 sets of 20 to 30 repetitions

Honest it's a killer - looks innocuous but is actually hard work. I found a video online of how to do it which if I can find again I'll post up here.

Sunday, 23 September 2007

Sunday Morning Post

Blimey, was so zonked last night went to bed as soon as had got kids in theirs, reckon I was asleep by 9 o’clock and have only just got up at 6:30 which is latest I’ve slept in for ages. Am going to do some ironing shortly which will be fun as I’ve just about never done it before. Have found videos on the internet so am going to give it my best shot and if worse comes to worse have me mums number on speed-dial!

Will let you know how I get on in the next day or two.

Yes, I also acknowledge Derby were hammered by Arsenal 5-0 but at least I have Adebayor in my fantasy football team on SkySports so there's even such an ill wind blows some good....

Saturday, 22 September 2007

Golf gone south again!

Played another 18 holes at Ashbourne today - abysmally!! Drives were okay (although didn't do yardages this week - I'd expect it to be as good as last week and possibly a little bit longer and accuracy definitely up) but approach shots and putting absolutely abysmal had quite a few shots where I just plain shanked it. Such is life. On the positive side though... I learnt today how the washing machine works and it's dead easy - why girls make out that these are temperamental highly technological devices I'll never know - all you do is put your stuff in (careful not to mix coloured with whites and what have you) switch it onto the 40 degree setting, put in a tablet of washing machine powder and press start - how hard is that? Also got it all hanged out on the line and got the place hoovered up before out golfing so am almost on top of the housework. Am off to bed shortly because am a bit on the extremely tired side!!

Friday, 21 September 2007

Solid 90 at Whiston Hall Golf Club

Played a round with my dad and uncle Michael at Whiston Hall on the Stoke Road about ten miles from Ashbourne give or take. Couldn't putt to save my life but still went round in an admirable 90 (in my view). Hit some really solid drives just cocked up a few of the approach shots as wasn't judging yardages very well.

When got back set about sorting clothes out to make some space in wardrobe and what have you. Chucked out loads of pairs of 40" trousers and XXL shirts, came across a couple of pics in the bottom of one cupboard which am going to put on myspace later and some ace old T-shirts including this Sabbath Headless Cross Tour 89 Shirt (think it's my kid brother's really, can't remember seeing em on that tour??).

Probably mid-80s look at that mega drum kit!

Paul playing with Big Lix - mid to late 90's I reckon.

Paul, 2007 in a vintage 89 Sabbath Headless Cross Tour Shirt!!!, wahey it fits again!

Times Article on BMI

Read an article in the Times yesterday by Dr Thomas Stuttaford titled “Let’s all go pear -shaped”. Even the title is interesting! I wonder what the expression “It’s all gone pear-shaped” to refer to something going awry originally referred to? Anyway, the article talks about bmi and stuff and for the greater part doesn’t tell me anything particularly new but it does go on to discuss why the apple shape is so bad – when the amount of fat is carried round the abdomen is excessive the adipose (fat) cells of visceral fat become over filled with stored fats that secrete adipokines that can have dramatic effects on insulin resistance and production, the cardiovascular system and metabolic systems. Nothing really new in all that but what it does re-enfoce is that BMI is not the be-all and end-all in and that it would be useful to use a body composition monitor which can tell you the percentages of fat, bone or muscle – gotta get me one of them!!!
I've reduced my apple shape from 40/42" waist down to a 32/34" waist in the space of 7 months with Slimming World so am not as concerned as I used to be about it. In fact when I use the Waist Calculator tool over at Slimming World's website it says : "Your waist circumference indicates that you are not storing excess weight over your abdomen and are at a low risk of developing weight-related health problems." Top stuff eh!!


Thursday, 20 September 2007

Wahey! Week 30 Weighin - Not as bad as I expected!

A weird sort of a week. Monday I was 14st 9.5lbs and mad at myself for having a bad weekend even though I’d not been too much off-course and had done the 150 miles on the bike in the week. This week without cycling and stuck at home while good lady is sunning it up in Gran Canaria I expected it to get worse and worse so I developed my a house-bound exercise regime that involves step aerobics (sort of), weights and golf swing practice and weirdly it seems to have paid off because today am weighing in at 14st 6lbs. Which is very good all things considered. I was talking about changing target weights from 13st 11lbs which is a body mass index of bang on 25 (the very edge of being a healthy BMI against being an overweight BMI) however after talking with Caryl and Margaret I’ve become convinced that this isn’t the right target weight for me to aim for. Before today I was toying with the idea of changing my target to 14st 7lbs which is what my weight seems to keep returning to lately. Now with my new exercise regime working a treat and getting back to around 14st 6lbs I’m considering 14st 4lbs as being the target as this gives me something to keep working for. This would mean a total weight loss of fourt and a half stone from the original 18st 11lbs so would be simple to remember and seems to be about right!!!

Am a bit more confident now of getting there too, four days with no cycling and I haven't gone to pieces so am pleased. Might do a post tomorrow about my 'extreme' step aerobics exercise!!

Graphs and tables and stuff:-

Good stuff - weekly average weight loss still just over 2lbs a week after damn near 7 months - a testament to Food Optimising even if I'm not doing it quite as well as when I set out in February!

Looks like it's flat lining but am technically at my lightest for many, many years, am not unhappy with that (you just can't not appreciate a double negative can you not??).

Wednesday, 19 September 2007

Wednesday Post - New feature Thought for the Day!!!

I think I mentioned before that I'm reading a book that helps with the mental side of playing golf as keep losing my rag on the golf course of late. I across this interesting quote in the first twenty pages that I think applies to Slimming / Life / pretty much anything really which together with some advice from the Founder of Slimming World has made me decide to change my target weight to something more achievable (not sure what yet!). So bear in mind this quote is from a sports psycologist specialising in helping golfers and substitute the word "player" with "slimmer" and then it pretty much works!

"I want players to understand that while it’s important to have dreams and goals in life, the pleasure comes from chasing those dreams more than it does from catching them. I can’t guarantee any player that his dreams will come true. I can’t predict when they’ll come true. What I can guarantee is a life spent chasing dreams is a life well spent. Anyone who does this will get to the end of their days and look back with a smile. He will have had a ball. Once a player understand this it gives him remarkable peace of mind. He can weather the inevitable downs in a game of ups and downs. He doesn’t get critical or judgemental about himself. He knows that in the end, things will turn out well. He’s an optimist."

What I'm taking from that is that the important thing is the journey not the destination. Will post some other stuff from it in due course but they'll be more related to my golf and temper!!!!

Book is called "The Golfer's Mind" by Dr Bob Rotella who's a top sports psycologist in the States and it's a darned interesting read so far.

Tuesday, 18 September 2007

Tuesday Post - things going okay!

Second day with Janette in Gran Canaria. Everything is going like clockwork so far (is it all a dream!!??!!) Kids are getting up fairly well (Lucy's a beggar to shift first thing but not too bad). Everyone's ready for school by 7:45 so got a bit of hoovering and cleaning done before setting off for office at 8am.

When I got home I'd got this mega Ebay bargain waiting for me. It's only a new 2005 Deep Purple tie-dye tour shirt (got it for £3!!!). It's extra-large so a bit on the big side but it's grand to be able to say anythings a bit on the big side after being XXL forever!!!

Obviously with Janette away the cyclings gone out of the window but am hoping my mum's going to have the kids for an extra hour tomorrow night and I'll get at least 14 miles extra on the clock (there might yet be a way to get 100 miles done this week!). Have an indoor exercise routine going on to cover for the lack of cycling - will post on it at the end of the week.

Monday, 17 September 2007

Come on u Rams - Derby's a black and white town...

Wahey - we done them Northern low-lifes with the big bank balances! Owen? who he? Might be able to score against Russia but he ain't used to quality like Derby County!!

As Janette's in Gran Canaria I had to give Season Ticket to nephew, what happens? Derby beats Newcasle Utd, a side unbeaten until they visited Fortress Pride Park. New signing Miller has what sounded like an awesome debut on the radio and I'm stuck at home. Jamesy has texted and said if I want Derby to stay up I need to sell my season ticket - if I could guarantee it I bloomin would!! Come on u Rams.

Am also unable to do the normal exercise regime as am stuck at home until morning so am developing a new home-based one that's going to work great - will update you at the end of the week. Involves weights, golf and all sorts of stuff - quite pleased on a monday night!!!

Sunday, 16 September 2007

End of the Week Stats Roundup

Cycling stats to be proud of!! Have seriously ramped up the mileage this week - it was the only target I set for myself that I met!! All the Food Optimising targets I set I missed - need to get on board again proper style!! Have added new stats for Golf - ace eh?!? - shows that I've added distance to my driving but suffered a loss of accuracy. Can work on both!!

Janette is away for ten days now (taking her handicapped brother to Gran Canaria for a his 50th birthday) so am going to need to be creative on the exercise front as cycling is out as have got the two ankle-biters to look after! This is an opportunity to get on with some weights at home and the gym at work and to put in twenty minutes a day on the golf swing (if don't get too bored!!) - we'll see!!

Sunday Post

This is actually two rides - forgot to reset the Garmin between runs. The main ride was in the morning and consisted of a bit of tour-de-ashbourne which is the windy climb above the label Ashbourne on the map below and then a steady sort of a climb to Kniveton before whizzing along to Offcote (found out Onecote is more towards Leek!!). There's a hell of a hill before you get back onto the Belper road and head back into Ashbourne but it's a good run that would last about an hour and ten minutes I reckon on a good day. In the night I went to brother-in-laws to fetch Morrisons Eat Smart Sausages in the rain but not a big for a five miler.

After this mornings ride on t'bike which is looking like the last for ten days as it's chucking it down with rain now, me and Phil fitted this fine bike holding contraption in the Garage - which was nice.

In the afternoon I assisted brother-in-law Brian to fit this fine piece of kit into Janette's Toyota, which was great, have to just about take the dashboard out to put it in but that's life - must make it nice and hard for thieves which is good!! This car stereo plays CD/RWs, has an Aux socket for MP3 player, can read and play SD Cards and the obligatory tuner and it cost the princely sum of £40 from Aldi - top stuff eh!! Janette's well pleased

Did a quick 13 miler this morning for an hour. Took on some big hills so expect the average to be down a bit. Posted a few pics of views along the way - if you click on them they zoom to full resolution which is a nice facility in Blogger. This morning the Ipod was supplying Rush - "Chronicles" Disc 2 and a bit of the new album "Snakes and Arrows" which is a return to form for Rush (wasn't overly impressed with "Test for Echo" but have a listen once in a while).

Me and me best mechanical mate, the giant, at the top of the nastiest hill that has just been conquered!

View looking back towards Offcote (or was it onecote - will put a map up later then I'll know.)

View from Windmill Lane at top of Ashbourne

View from Belper Road somewhere near Bradley turnoff.

Another view towards Offcote/Onecote.

Saturday, 15 September 2007

Golf - great to dire in a week.

Funny round of golf today - some good bits but a lot of rubbish along the way - would have shot 90 from the whites but got hacked off towards the end! I suppose the good thing to take away from it is that distance on drives that ended up on the fairway were averaging 224 yards up on last week - the bad thing is that accuracy was only 58% quite a bit worse than last week. There was a boomer of a drive on the 5th which was 255 yards but downhill so we ought to ignore that one but I hit another boomer on the 10th which is flat and went 245 yards and on the 8th I went 241 yards - all of which is positive progress. The worry was that slow play ahead got into my head and it took me four holes to get into gear. Scored two points for first four holes and thirteen points over next five holes by way of comparison. Funny old game golf - your best round is immediately followed by your worst round is immediately followed by your best round is immediately ... (ad finitum)

Stats breakdown - some good drives surrounded by utter tat!!

As regards letting the stuff get into my head I've bought a book on the mind which I'm going to try and see if I can get to grips with - think my temper threshold had really come down since stopping smoking - in fact am convinced of it.

Saturday Morning Post - Mission Accomplished

Done a big loop round Ellastone, Denstone, Rocester, Uttoxeter, Sudbury and back to Clifton. Was going to go past Denstone to Alton, then past Alton Towers and down the top road back to Ashbourne but bottled it a bit as it's not a road I'm mega familiar with so went with familiarity and had a good 23 mile run round the edge of Staffordshire and then back home along the A515 to Clifton. Good at the time I did it (i.e. early doors) but I'd say not to do it when the roads are busy. Had Black Sabbath's 'Live from Radio City' on the Ipod which was grand for most of the way and finished off with Rush 'Chronicles' for the last twenty odd minutes. The ride was a cracker and the hills I used to avoid seemed to be not much of a problem at all which is a good sign. The ride took 1hr 43mins at a steady 13.8mph average which is okay, not going to break my neck for speed on a Saturday morning!

Anyway have achieved the 150mile target (see above) I set for the week even if 65 of those miles had to get done in the last two days (that's a good thing too though - means I did it with a session to spare!).

Now have golf set up for 12:30 and it's fish and syn-free chips night as well!! You gotta love them Saturdays aintcha!!

Friday, 14 September 2007

Friday Post

Almost Forgot - had to visit Dentist for 6 month check up this afternoon, all went well, no drills just a bit of a polish and on my way. When I walked in he says "Blimey, you've lost some weight, how've you done that?", "Slimming World" says I, his assistant says "Is that like Weight Watchers?", "Nothing like Weight Watchers" says I, "this eating plan works and keeps on working." etc. etc.

Now nothing unusual in that conversation you'd think, except that the "Slimming World" is the first thing I said, normally I'd have said "loads of exercise, eating healthily" etc.etc. or something like that, it's always felt a little bit embarassing to admit you're going to a slimming club or following an eating plan (maybe not if you're a gal but if you're bloke, trust me it's an admission of some depth). The thing is am happy now to say look it works for me, it'll work for you, am not embarassed to say Slimming World has made the biggest difference to me in 40 years. This is progress in the head department...

Evening Post - We're right in there again! Ha ha, done damn near 24 miles tonight which put together with this morning run makes about 40 miles which I think makes the 150 miles for the week well doable now. Been up through Bradbourne, Brassington, Carsington, Bradley in a whopping big loop (for me anyway!).

131 miles on the board (doesn't include five without the computer on board when the stealth packed up) with a day to go, 14.6mph current average, everything coming up roses.

Mean, moody and magnificent (or maybe moderately mediocre!!)

Looking out toward Kirk Ireton I think - need a better camera methinks!

Lunchtime update - have just been looking at Google Analytics for my blog and it reveals a lot of direct traffic coming from Frank Kinlan's blog at I had a quick look at Frank's site because it's a great site if you're interested in cycling and weight loss (it ticks both boxes big style) and lo and behold there's a link to my blog on it. So have returned the favour in my weblinks. Seriously, Frank describes himself as "A 47 year old bloke who has lost 7.9 stone, 50.2 KG (110.4 lbs) to date through a combination of cycling and the Lifestyle and Weight Management Service" - there's a lot to read but it's absolutely inspirational to me and however good I think I've done it pales somewhat against someone who's lost damned near 8 stone!!!

Got a really solid 16 miler done this morning (15.9mph average!!, just over an hour on the bike) so am well-pleased. The 150 mile target is still just about do-able. I've got 107+ miles on the clock so far and there 5 miles un-recorded when I got the giant back on the road sans computer. Which I reckon means I've got to do three thirteen milers that's Friday night, Saturday morning and Saturday Evening - it's just do-able. Of course if I can do more mileage tonight and tomorrow morning I can make the evening run easier (have got 6 miles of walking on a golf course tomorrow afternoon, remember!!).

All looking good to meet at least one target!!

Thursday, 13 September 2007

Week 29 Weighin - 14st 7lbs - 1lb gain

You know those weeks where you've done everything right, followed the plan to the letter, done plenty of exercise and the scales still say you've not lost weight?

Well, this ISN'T one of those weeks!!!

I knew two days ago I was not going to be looking at a set of friendly scales come Thursday. Why? Lost it a bit at the weekend, then bike broke down the other night so had a bit of me mums millionaire shortbread to make up for the disappointment (shortbread with a layer of caramel topped off with a layer of dark chocolate - about a 100,000 syns but worth every one of em...). And if I'm honest that's kind of how I've been for the last few weeks picking at stuff I shouldn't and kind of carbon offsetting it by doing loads of miles on the bike. I think in a roundabout way I'm probably happy where I am at the mo - that might be it???

Either that or a good kick up the ass is required!! Am gonna have a think on it.

Just done 13 miles on the bike tonight (25 for the day), I reckon at a good pace (15mph+) although will know for sure in the morning. Think there's about 92miles on the clock at the moment and should have it up to at least 115 by this time tomorrow night (am camping out with the kids tomorrow night so that might affect the possibilities of getting the last 35 miles done on Saturday although am committed to getting at least one of my four things done this week and getting 150 would feel like an achievement of some sort after all this mediocrity I've been doing!

Note: weekly avg weight loss going to be under 2lbs next week if not careful!

The flatlining continues! As long as it don't start going up above 14st 7lbs I'm okay for now.

Lunchtime Post

Out on the bike at 6:10 this morning as it was too dark before then, haven’t fitted a front light yet as have a rechargeable one on order (if it doesn’t arrive today I’ll swap light from Stealth over to the Giant so I can get out tonight after Janette has been shopping). The ride this morning was a little slower than last nights formula one speed run but was still a respectable 14.7mph over 12 miles. Am going to swap the back wheel off the Stealth to the Giant and swap the tyres round for the front wheels so will get even faster. Thoroughly expect to be arriving back home before I’ve set off in the near future and near light speed travel is definitely on the cards the way things are going (listen out for a sonic boom if you're in the Ashbourne area, early doors).

Weigh-in day today and am expecting a pound on. Haven’t stuck to the task well enough this week but 14st 7lbs will be okay, am not getting hung up on small gains and am almost happy at 14½ stone. Am thinking about going to see my GP to see what he thinks, I can remember ages ago him saying 14stone when it seemed pie in the sky that I could ever get anywhere near it so it might be that he said 14st something and I’ve redefined it in my head – we’ll see. Anyway it’s about time I started feeling a bit more positive about what I’ve achieved thus far – who’d have thought I’d be moaning about being 14.5 stone when seven months ago I was near-as-damnit 19 stone!

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Revenge of the Giant!!

Ye gods, what have I been doing! The poor old Giant's back wheel went in about April this year so I got a new bike (as you do) and hung the Giant up in the garage to gather dust. As I was getting fitter the new bike seemed better than it really was. Have taken the Giant out tonight with off-road tyres on it and it's thrashed the Stealth into the floor - a 16.2mph average for 14 miles in 52.5 minutes?

16.2mph average on MTB tyres, is it having a laugh (only at the Stealth's expense!).

Have got to get the Giant kitted out now and to that effect I made a quick visit to the Tesco's superstore in sunny Alfreton this lunchtime and purchased an accessory kit that had been reduced from £14.97 to £11.22. It had a pump, a bike lock, a multi-tool, a drink bottle and holder and a bike computer. The bike computer was surplus to requirement (have Garmin taking care of business in that area) so as Dave was looking for one for his bike, I sold it to him and saved even more. (Dave works with me on special projects, by the way, and has taken up a bit of cycling while he gets over his dodgy knee, top man).

Tesco Bike Accessory Kit, great value at £14.97, bargain at £11.22!!!

So have gone from being hacked off with the world last night to "happy days are here again" in under 24 hours!! Well pleased!!

Morning Post - A Giant returns....

Got up at 5:15, straight down the garage, got the Giant Frame out, put wheels on it including fixed rear wheel with new shimano cartridge (see pic). Pumped up tyres, sorted brakes, put a seat on the beggar and it's pretty much ready to ride. Only got about 5 miles done on it and not recorded on computer - need to get some cable ties and then I'll have that working again. The stealth is jiggered, just can't stand the noise of the beggar. The giant on the other hand has a slight knocking noise like one of the wheels is out of true but am going to get a better look at it tonight while I have time and we'll be back in business proper. As it is, it's just nice to pound round without all manner of banging and clattering. Am much happier than last night - just need to get some lights sorted on it and then things will be grand!!

A pic of megoodself and the Giant - older, quieter and betterer than the stealth at the moment! Note: the apples to the left of my head (they're not growing out of my head but are on a top little tree in the background!)!

New Shimano Cassette in place.

Tuesday, 11 September 2007

Darned bike is jinxed

Only six miles done tonight. Crank has gone on the Stealth, it makes more noise than your average motorbike now. Am going to see what can do in the morning when it's light but at the moment I don't think I'll be cycling home from work. Might swap wheels out from stealth and put em on Giant (Have got the Giant back wheel from repair shop bit it still don't seem right). We'll see. Am most hacked off and going to bed now. Will see if I wake up happier.

Morning Post : More pesky punctures

Currently have a gnat's whisker short of 46 miles on the clock so am almost a third of the way there on Tuesday morning. I got the 12 miles planned done last night which was good. This morning though only got 10 miles done due to getting a mile and a half out and finding a puncture in the rear tyre.
Had two choices push back home and repair it which would take thirty-five minutes (20 odd minutess walk, 15 minutes repair) or repair on spot and carry on. As I've never done a fix on the road and it's one thing that worries when I'm riding to work on a Thursday morning knowing I've got an 8:30 meeting and 22 miles to cover I thought I'll have a crack at fixing it on the spot.
It highlighted the need to carry a 15mm spanner as the adjustable spanner in my mini toolkit is not really right for the job but the upshot is I can use my spare inner tube and have the bike back on the road in 15 minutes - so I ended up getting ten miles on the clock anyway which is a fair result, all things considered!!

Stats for week so far... 45 on t'clock and on the way.

Revised plan - mileage required per session now 12.2 up from 12.0 yesterday due to puncture inhibiting tuesday am's ride

Monday, 10 September 2007

Daily Post / Plan for the Week / New Eye Candy!!!

The Daily Post
It was blooming raining this morning! Not impressed with that, still got a solid 10 miles in, was a bit jiggered last night so fell a bit short of the mark but I did a little three miler to test the new pedals out at 15.3mph average earlier in the day so that was okay. At present the average mph over just over 20 miles is standing at 14 mph. If I could maintain that somehow this week that would be an achievement!

Plan for the week

1). Going to ride home from work on Wednesday and back to work on Thursday morning – it will be the last time for this year –and it’s based on having decent weather (which has been forecast – it was wet and colder this morning). This means I get 40+ miles done in two trips.

2). Am aiming to get 150 miles on the clock this week, not managed it before and have made this a bit tricky because yesterday was rubbish with just 13 miles done – legs were sort of tired and it was windy (not much of an excuse but there you go). Have worked out a plan of sorts in Excel (See below)

3). Am going to do an exact food dairy this week – am going to look at everything and see if there’s a syn value as am sure there’s something am missing.

4). Finally, I'm doing an experiment as well which I’m going to keep secret until next weigh-in – if it fails you may never hear about it, but let me tell you, if it works it’ll be great!! See if spill the beans on Thursday ...

Above: miles for morning and evening runs for this week - hoping for 150 miles in the week which will be a new record and I'll be jolly pleased with!!!

Top Eye Candy:
This is what I'm aiming for for Xmas - is a bit of a dear 'un at £300 but I'm going to combine it with me 40th Birthday and have it and nowt else.

T'is a Giant SC3 road bike complete with Aluminium frame and top components - should add some serious speed. Have noticed on the Stealth MTB I currently ride that I'm only using the biggest cog on the chain-set so reckon I'm ready for something with a bit of umph!!


Sunday, 9 September 2007

Biking Stats 020907 - 080907

Biking stats - steady this week, a total of 117.97 miles at a super average of 13.7mph which is well up on previous bestest of 13.3 so am happy with that. Also managed to get past the elusive upper speed barrier of 40 mph on the run to my mums last Sunday, which for those in the know is the speed at which you cannot actually breathe such is the awesome speed of it all - some day man will invent motorised vehicles that will be capable of achieving these speeds and more ...

Weekly mileage totals.

The week in more detail than anyone can possibly be interested in...

A blast from the past - Festival of Transport

Me and the family went to the Vintage Vehicle show, Festival of Transport at Darley Dale. mum and Dad had got some free tickets from my cousin Colin who owns the land it's held on. It's been held every year for the past few years and generates funds for MENCAP and other charities. It's stunning the amount of vintage stuff there is out there. Everything from steam powered vehicles onwards, taking in agricultural, haulage, military, not to mention classic, vintage cars and motorcycles.

The classic cars were of particular interest to my dad who has two MGBs he's doing up and there were some stunners there, absolutely mint some were. There were also some very nice Triumph Stags that I know my mum always fancied having.

On to the Vintage motorcycles, who should we bump into but Eddy Briddon, former singer of Amethyst 25 years ago!! Now he's changed a bit and I've changed a bit in the meantime (he didn't recognise me at all until Janette said 'Alright Eddy?") Ed does up old bikes and was showing off his 1957 Norton which has won prizes here and there and he says is still road legal at 50 years old!!!

Have posted a pic of him singing with the band at the bottom for reference as to how much we've changed!!

Note the Motorhead t-shirt - still got his roots if not the hair!

Amethyst (l-r Ed, Jon Bigland, megoodself, Steve Gough and Roj Radford) sometime around 1982!!

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