This guffer has been thinking more about bikes than riding them of late. The constant challenges of work-life balance has to be turned on its head and readjusted to the constant opportunities of a life-work balance. What does this mean? Well, for a cyclist it could mean commute to work by bike... I've done this in the past and to be honest, my concern is that it can turn a truly enjoyable pursuit into a chore. Those of us that commute to work by bike will recognise this somewhat negative list:
1. Other road users - sleepy, harassed, inconsiderate
2. Road surface - fuel spills, pot holes, stones, grit
3. Clothing - fine when you set out, but possibly damp when preparing for the return home
4. Showers at work, don't you just love them....
5. Bike security
There are of course many more that can be added to that list. I've decided to stop, because if I continue I may finally throw in the towel and decide to not bother riding to work again, period.
Thankfully, it is coming into the season when there are opportunities for 'cycle to family'. Weekends are indeed precious and riding bikes can become a selfish pursuit. Fellow bands of riders from across the globe head into the hills and beyond leaving partners and kids at home. How many times has a time been set for a return and it's been missed? Reasons can be: mechanical, fitness, wrong turn - again, so many can be added to that list. For the past few years the plan for this guffer has been to head out early and agree to meet with family at a destination. The challenge with this arrangement is that you are usually on your tod, so little chance for the social excuse of riding a bike or even 'measuring' fitness against fellow guffers. However, this type of ride does provide many opportunities for wonderful moments. A few highlights are riding towards the destination and discovering that the car about to pass is the family wagon, the windows are down and the kids are cheering. Arriving at the destination before the car, that is always a bonus and results in a smugness of the tallest order.
One of the routes that I take to a family destination covers an overall distance that is a snip under 60 miles, a couple of killer climbs and exposed moorland do their best to sap energy. The last 10 can be tough, but it is a rolling joy of a road. This is my measure point and cracking a time under 27mins is the target.
This weekend provides the opportunity for a new cycle to a family destination. The excitement building this time is due to the hoops turning on old but familiar roads as a solo break to the Angus Glens beckons.