Get Serious

When you’re not well you think you’re not well forever. Not that I think I have anything terminal, I just think I am never going to be fully fit ever again. Maybe it’s impatience; maybe it’s just my crazy mind. Am I the only person who thinks this way? I’ve spent the last week in bed, well that’s not totally true but I have slept a lot… and moaned a lot. It was the start of January when my training should be ramping up, this is not what I needed.

I think Aldo is concerned about my lack of fitness, I must confess I’m a little anxious about it now too, though that’ll be because I think I’m never going to recover from this feckn bug I’ve got – my mind again. He keeps sending me training plans and I keep intending to follow them but as yet I’ve not gone there. I’ve decided this week they are not for me, though I may use some of the disciplines contained in them.  With this on my mind, I used some of the idle time I have had this week to put together my own training plan.

I’ve been reading a book by Brad Wiggins, not the latest one, the one that was out before he wore the yellow jersey. I’m nearly half way through but it’s clear, certainly early in his career, there was a lot of indiscipline in his training regime. Chris Boardman was assigned to him by the BOA to address this. And this seemed to help him win an individual gold, a team silver and a bronze in the Madison. Don’t get me wrong,  I’m in no way comparing myself to Bradley Wiggins or his level of fitness and strength, but it strikes me I need some strict regime of my own. Aldo and his training plans can be my Chris Boardman.

I’ve just completed the first draft and dragged it into the Dropbox for Aldo Boardman’s inspection. Hope he approves. I have every day assigned from next week (when I’m going to be not unwell again) until the Mayday holiday. It looks scary but not beyond me. A lot of hard work but at least I can see what is required in black and white.

I caught up with Mac today just to see how he’s doing and how the cycling is going as I’ve not seen or talked to him since the end of November. He suggested that next year we tour Oz but I think that was a whim as he’s seeing a big bubbly Australian beauty at the moment. He wouldn’t tell me her name but it isn’t Kylie or Sheila, my pathetic attempts at guessing her name were met by only a chuckle. If I didn’t know him as I do, I would have mistaken that chuckle as a condescending laugh. He thinks he’s a little behind in his training as he’s hardly been out on the bike this year. I think his training is going great guns, I just think at the moment he’s concentrating on the wrong area. He seems to have too much fondness for Asia and Australasia, need to find him a good European girl.


European Extravaganza

The name European Extravaganza was coined by Aldo a few hours after Alexander cited the original idea.

The two friends had made the short trip to Arran late last year and earlier this year they were joined by Mac for the Oban jaunt. Both trips were only for a few days but gave them all a taste for the longer adventure. And after the wind and rain that battered the Scottish coast on their most recent outing, all jokingly promised that the next trip would be in a warmer climes.

One Sunday afternoon, after one of the weekend excursions, the novel idea was introduced by its creator in little more than its original simple state. The thought of travelling from Sagres, looping round the Black Sea and finishing in the Arctic Circle was met with bemusement and hilarity by both Aldo and Mac, though they stopped short of rolling on the floor laughing. The jibes kept coming even though Alexander had expanded on the original one liner. He took the friendly banter on the chin and joined in the laughter knowing that both his cycling buddies had already warmed to his idea.

Mac left and thought that was a laugh, a week in Europe would be good but would these two guys get fit enough? He wouldn’t think too much more about it until the discussion arose again, his mind was focused on more immediate matters, like the date he had that night with the Vietnamese girl he had met a few weeks before . Remembering her sweet smile made him feel warm inside and thinking about her perfect young body and flirty smile made him feel uncomfortable, wishing he’d changed out of his Lycra shorts before driving.

Aldo on his journey home thought about little else. He thought about the rules his friend had imposed making the idea seem sensible after all. A week each year; although it would restrict them in a lot of ways it would help the decision making process and guarantee a trip each year. How many years would it take from start to end, he checked this out later that same day and wasn’t slow to realise the laugh they would all have when he informed them. The trip of well over ten thousand miles would take a minimum fourteen years to complete. He liked the idea of starting from the point where they finished the previous year, a virtual tyre track across the continent. Transporting the bikes might be a ‘bit of a bugger’ he thought, but knew that could be overcome, he was sure Alexander hadn’t considered this, he was correct.  The other thing he did when he got home was to relay the story to his wife, not in an excitable manner but in a way to highlight the comical events as the story had unfolded. She laughed, though stopped short of rolling on the floor laughing.