Thursday, 26 February 2015

February 2015 - TC's Best Buys

Craft Mesh Baselayer - for those in between times I've bought this to wear under my road cycling tops mainly just to take the chill off in the intermediate weather when the chances are good that you might be too warm or too cold if you take or don't take a jacket. Really good price. They have with sleeves on sale as well.

Winter waterproof socks
I've had my pair for the past probably 4 or 5 years. They keep your feet relatively warm, but the cold does come through sometimes, but at least your feet are dry. These have been little lifesavers over the years to me. These arrived today and delighted that they fit over my problematic calves.

I do have a pair of overshoes... They are NOT warm, but they keep my shoes at least clean. I got so cold on Saturday that I almost wanted to cry so I decided that it would be the very last time that I'll be that cold. Been trying to buy these for ages, but they have been out of stock in my size every time I tried to buy it before.

Pearl Izumi Tights
I love Pearl Izumi tights. Their sizing works for me (the more round figure), their padding is good and they last a long time. I still have my very first pair and I can't get myself to throw it out as it is still comfortable although a bit big. Liezl borrowed one of my old pairs last year when we were in Italy & she wanted to buy it from me... That is how good they are when someone wants to buy a pair from you second hand!

The only thing with these are that it unfortunately depends if your size is available. I was lucky enough to find the sizes that work for me.

Thought I'd share the saving's love!

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Wake-up it is 2015!

On 8 February the most regular ladies from Tango Cycling kicked off this year's ladies rides.

As we all had a long winter we decided to start gentle and drive down to Peaslake instead of taking train. In our defence South West Trains have also had major engineering works over weekends. 

Vera was so stoked to ride but overslept to her own annoyance. She didn't let that put her off and still made her way over to Peaslake! 

We faffed a little bit pumped tyres at the always friendly Pedal & Spoke and chatted to Howard for a while before we started. 

It was an abnormal warmer day for February and we had to stop a few times to strip off some layers. I can't ride when I'm overheating. I was slow as it was, but being hot made me even slower. 

We climbed singletrack towards the top of Yoghurt Potts and I skill fully navigated us the flattest possible route. :-) 

We had a chat with some other mountain bikers at the top of Holmbury Hill and fantasised about the idea of having a little coffee & cake van right there. 

I spotted the first Pyga, South African brand bike designed by Patrick Morewood and was interested to ask why this guy decided on that bike. He previously had a Morewood and apparently tries a whole lot of other bikes, but still decided to go with the Pyga as the others just didn't feel right. Loved the colour of the bike, it was a bright happy yellow! ;-)

Yoghurt Potts were the muddiest I've seen it in a long time. I stopped in the dip where we forked off to the right before they made changes to the route to take some photos. I sneakily then rode down the old way. I used to love that part even though it was rooty and very muddy at times, it was a great challenge. I knew once I've come past that point the fun really started. I felt quite nostalgic thinking about the first time Simon & Christiaan took me down Yoghurt Potts in the mud. I was screeching all the way and shaking at the end of it, but just wanted to do it again and again! 
Marie pumping nicely through Yoghurt Potts

Telegraph was on our list next. It can be hard work at times, but it is still nice to pick up speed and just flow towards the end. We bumped into Albert at the bottom of Telegraph he had really bad bike trouble. First something on his cassette broke so he had to turn his bike into a single speed then his frame cracked! How tragic?! 

Cecilia cruising down Telegraph
I promised Cecilia & Marie that we will take the short and steep way instead of the longer steadier climb... Unfortunately we popped out a bit too low and had to do slow and steady. 

At the top of Barry's we met up with Vera who finally made it over to Peaslake. There was a group of about 12 guys taking a running start from the reservoir across the road. More than I've ever seen. I didn't like the idea that much as they came across as if they knew what they were doing and could easily be intimidating, but sorry guys when I saw you push your bikes back up the hill at the bottom of Barry's you lost all your credibility. :) 

We headed to Peaslake to the warmth of the Village Store and a bit of love from Trudy before we headed back home. 

It was with shock and embarrassment that I realised we only cycled 10km. What was worse is that I ran 10km faster the day before! Things can only get better from here... This ride was rude wake-up call and I'm determined to gain back my fitness slowly but surely!

Happy to ride in the winter sun!