Monthly Archives: May 2014

Bikes ready for the Pilgrimage

So the Bikes ready for the Pilgrimage, pity about the riders 🙂

Here is mine loaded and ready to go

I’ve taken the rear rack off Jane’s and added a handlebar extension so that her front light clears her handlebar bag (underneath).

 

Preparing for a Pilgrimage

So as I have mentioned (once or twice) this weekend is a Methodist Pilgrimage. The Methodists of Syston are heading to Epworth Old Rectory, home of the Wesleys. Five of us are planning to cycle the whole way (165 miles over 3 days) and another two are cutting out Leicestershire’s hills by starting and finishing at Newark-on-Trent (about 100 miles over 3 days). And yes you can still sponsor me! 🙂

I thought I had done a lot of the preparation but as the ride leader there has seemed to be a lot to do this week.

A friend is driving our car as a mobile support/rescue vehicle, so I have been sorting out tools and spares to cover lots of eventualities.

We are camping for Saturday and Sunday night, with cyclists, families and support team there are 17 of us at Trentfield Campsite, I volunteered to cook bacon rolls for everyone on Sunday and Monday and that plus our tent etc is going up in a caravan with more of the support team.

Meanwhile, I have been sorting out my own bike. While my Shand Stoater Bike for Life, was my first choice my knees have been so bad that I am using my road bike as the lighter weight should help save my knees. Following the Leicester Triathlon I have now taken off the tri bars, added three bags:

This will be my first ride with this combination of bags on this bike. So far they look great, I am very interested to see how well they work in practice.

I have also added my new and very bright See Sense rear light although I’ll swap it onto whoever is bringing up the rear of our group. Now I just have to put the mudguards back on (have you seen the weather forecast!).

It will also be my first ride with my Mio Link heart wristband so I’m very interested to see how well that works, sadly at the moment the heart rate is only picked up by my Garmin Edge and not by my Android phone or tablet.

For the first time too I am trying out live tracking of the ride, you will be able to follow us at http://42bikes.warnock.me.uk/tracking/ I can run the app on both my phone and my tablet so I’m hoping to get enough battery life even with the GPS on continually.

One thing I have not yet fully sorted out it getting data off my Garmin without my laptop. I’ll have one more try today, if it works I can get the rides onto Strava and Garmin Connect each day without having to take my laptop computer.

By the time of my sabbatical in 12 months time I hope that I’ll have a newer Garmin and they will have updated their website enough for live tracking to be possible with the Garmin picking up the heart rate and using my phone to upload both live tracking and daily rides. That will make a big difference, especially as on my Bike for Life I can charge USB devices while I ride using the dynamo.

Charging USB devices is getting to be a significant issue. For Jane and I this weekend we have the following USB devices:

  • 2 x Android Phones (Samsung S3 mini)
  • 2 x Exposure front lights (actually shouldn’t need to be recharged)
  • 2 x Garmin GPS
  • 1 x Android Tablet (Nexus 7)
  • 1 x Tecknet USB Battery
  • 1 x Camera (small Olympus)
  • 1 x Bluetooth keyboard for my Nexus 7
  • 1 x See Sense rear light (our other rear lights use rechargeable AA or AAA batteries and won’t need charging for just a weekend).

So 11 devices. They include 4 different connectors and two different charger outputs.

Fortunately by the time I take my sabbatical things should have got easier in terms of USB. On my Bike for Life both bike lights run straight off the dynamo. I am hoping the dynamo will be able to fully charge the Tecknet battery each day and maybe also put some charge into my phone and tablet. Hopefully then the Tecknet battery will be able to recharge/top up the tablet, garmin, camera, phone, bluetooth keyboard, bluetooth speaker and a tent light each night. Also that I’ll cut out at least one non standard USB connector (for the exposure lights).

I am taking my sabbatical coffee kit to try in real world conditions, I’m be happy to make anyone a coffee but they will have to grind the beans themselves (all those winds of the grinder handle for each one of 17 people sounds tiring) 🙂

What’s been up Doc?

So I have been pretty quiet here for a while. The main reason is a combination of Triathlon recovery and a busy time at work.

Earlier I wrote about my preparations for the Leicester Triathlon, in the end I did 2 training runs, both 5k. The 2nd was on Tuesday 29th April with the race on Monday 5th May. In hindsight this was a mistake – although not as big a mistake as leaving running training so late 🙂

The first two parts of the race went well but when I came to start the run my knees were hopeless and I had to walk/hobble nearly the whole 5k. My overall result was still better than I expected at 1hour 38minutes 51seconds but the breakdown shows how biased the speed was against the run.

The problem is that my knees have still not recovered. A couple of things have taken me backwards. First a weekend after the race I had to do a fair bit of driving (3hrs on both Saturday and Sunday). Both the position and the weight of the clutch made my left knee considerably work. Then last week I had to do more walking and step climbing than normal while delivering and collecting Christian Aid envelopes (on one road every house has about 6 steps).

I have been able to get around by bike but have avoided long rides and have been slower than normal. Even when almost unable to walk it is quite possible to ride slowly without pain.

In the last day or so they do seem to have improved quite a bit. That is good news because this weekend is a big ride, the Methodist Pilgrimage to Epworth. We have 5 riders doing 165 miles over 3 days and 2 riders doing a slightly shorter ride of about 100 miles. The Pilgrimage includes a fundraising element 50% for Epworth Old Rectory (the family home of John and Charles Wesley) and the other 50% to Syston Methodist Church towards our project to create a Youth Cafe and Community Hub (sadly Syston has nowhere for young people to go in the evening and our current 1960’s facilities need a new separate entrance, refurbished toilets etc).

Please sponsor me at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/DaveWarnock cos these are both excellent causes.

Because of the knee problems I have changed my plans for the ride a little. A friend is driving our car as a support vehicle so I have decided that instead of using my Shand Stoater bike for life I am going to carry far fewer tools etc and ride my Whyte Suffolk hoping that a lighter faster bike will allow me to ride in a much more knee friendly way.

While my Whyte Suffolk does not have a rack (there are mounting points but the whole point is to keep it a lightweight road bike – albeit one with excellent disk brakes and comfortable 28mm tyres) I can carry quite a lot of stuff now. I can have three bags on the bike (all British made):

So with the smaller bag on the handlebars I should still have 20 litres capacity with the frame bag ideally suited to relatively heavy tools while the others are going to be great for people’s immediate clothing and food needs.

I am looking forward to the ride which is with good friends. Jane is coming and it will include her longest day ride (twice) and more long days in a row that she has done before.

Anyway your sponsorship will be much appreciated at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/DaveWarnock NB if you give on a Wednesday between 5pm and 6pm (UK time) then Paypal should match your donation (but it is likely to be used up very quickly each Wednesday so it looks liek you need to get in at 5:01pm

Jane’s first solo weekend tour

Been helping Jane get ready for her first ever solo tour! 🙂 Tomorrow she goes off for two nights at the lovely Launde Abbey for a retreat.

Later in the day I have to take our youngest son off for a weekend of LARPing for which I need the car. So Jane is cycling to Launde Abbey which is about 15.5 miles by a quiet route that avoids as many hills as possible. I have fitted an old black Ortlieb Handlebar Bag and she has her two Ortlieb Back Roller Plus Panniers which are also black. Looks very good on her road bike 🙂

specialized-dolce-elite-equipped-triple-2013-womens-road-bike

All being well she will return on Sunday afternoon!

I’ll take a pic of the intrepid new touring rider in the morning 🙂

It does mean I get two peaceful nights at home on my own, sadly I am working both Saturday and Sunday so can’t spend the whole time in bed.

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