After all the hemming and hawing over the weather I made a break for it last night and headed out to the park at dusk. The gates are shut to cars from nightfall making it an ideal time to get the miles in on virtually empty roads. There are only two hazards to worry about: the joggers and the deer.
Due to of it’s proximity to civilisation, the sodium glow of street lights spills into the park and keeps it from being too dark. With the patchy cloud allowing the moonlight through my little lights were virtually redundant other than to let others know I was there.
Some of the other cyclists I passed had a different view on what constitutes being visible and came tootling down the road lit up like the spaceship from Close Encounters, temporarily blinding me. Luckily this only presented a problem once when I couldn’t see the joggers ahead of me. Runners in the park seem to feel no need to let anyone know they are there and seem to relish running down the middle of the road practically invisible until you are on top of them.
As for the deer, they seem to observe The Highway Code and look before they cross the road. It’s a bit easier to pick out several hundred kilos of venison in your path that 70-odd of human but their vigilance was much appreciated as I came hurtling though a bunch of them trying to chomp my way through a rather tough flapjack.
I manged to get in about 40 miles in total and made use of the dark to get used to finding my bottle cage without looking and to try some eating on the bike. I’m not quite up to the level of hurtling along at pace eating but I have managed to find a suitable technique for unwrapping stuff without having to sit up too much.
I rest my forearms on the flat of the bar so I retain some control over the bike rather than trying to take my hands off and fiddle with wrappers. That way I find I can keep an eye on the road ahead and don’t get so nervous as I’m fiddling with tin foil and trying to leave a trail of it along the road behind me.
Sunday is a trip to the Surrey Hills with Nick and Rhyddid and tomorrow is the usual training laps with London Dynamo. I’m getting a bit conscious of trying not to overdo it, which is a ridiculously quick change from a couple of week’s ago. I guess fitting in the miles at one end of the week could be seen as block training.