Monday, 5 September 2011

Manchester 100

Hey folks.  Sorry for the late blog again down to cycling fanaticism.   Another good week for me on the bike.  A couple of firsts to talk about and a bit of an issue after the 100 miles :-))

So to the main event.  07:20 on Sunday morning saw about 50 cyclists set off from Wythenshawe Park for the Manchester 100 miles cycle.  There where around 3000 people signed up and staggered start times ensured that I would be passed on a number of occasions by the cycling supermen of Manchester.  The weather held nicely all day for us which was good as I didn’t fancy a stretch getting pissed on like last time!  I was cycling on my own this time as my compatriots had other commitments on the day and I found this to be very difficult.  It wasn’t so much from a physical perspective although there where a few miles between 70-80 where I was idling along struggling to maintain 14mph.  Mentally however it was hard as there where a lot of groups going past at speed and a fair few people singly overtaking me which was not good for me.  There was a headwind all the way out to the half way point where we turned around and came back and this proved troublesome.  I was getting draughted (where you sit behind someone to reduce your effort and maintain speed) a lot by other people but having little chance to do this myself.  The kindly organisers had thrown in some hills to, some of which had sharp little gradients in.  To be honest though I mostly flew up these even the two which the organisers had saved for the last 5 miles…thanks for that!  So I stopped twice for food once at halfway and at the last stop on the way back.  I spoke to quite a few people all doing great things for charity and others who where doing it for ‘fun’.  The social aspect of cycling is really difficult to describe even on a normal ride people smile, nod shout hello it’s a very close community in that respect.  So the final time I achieved was 6hrs and 36mins at an average of 15.5mph.  I am pleased with that considering it’s the first time I’ve done it.  I have my certificate to prove it also!

This was by far the longest ride I have ever done and the most time I have spent on the bike.  Apart from the normal aches and pains in the muscles there seems to be something a little more sinister going on, which I feel it necessary (though slightly embarrassed) to talk about to raise awareness slightly as I didn’t know about it and it scared me a bit.  I injured my perineum…this is the part basically that you sit on whilst riding.  It controls the blood flow to your private parts.  So basically you can damage it whilst riding long distances by restricting the blood flow to that area.  The symptom I am suffering with due to this is like weeing razorblades it’s very painful and can take a few days to subside (Tram for me until that point then).  I have been fine whilst doing up to 50miles but as it was the first time I have gone longer it has affected this area.  The other main symptom of which I am glad to say I haven’t suffered is erectile disfunction…I can’t remember signing up to that when I started cycling lol.  Basically its 100% treatable through rest and I will get over it but it has scared me somewhat!  Groin Numbness fantastic!

So about the rest of the work and my second ‘first’ on a bike.  On Thursday evening Rich and myself went for a ride up to the Brickworks…I had thought he had said the Printworks so I was sorely disappointed to find myself climbing up hills when I thought a pint of lager was on the cards.  The Brickworks is one of the bigger climbs in the area and known to many cyclists around the country.  It did take me a lot to get up it and I have to say I suffered on the way home but Rich was very patient with me as usual and we got back after 55miles and 3hrs 25mins of riding.  I was slightly worried it would affect the 100miler but it didn’t thankfully.  I think it actually helped with the climbs on the day!

On Friday evening I went for a session at Stretford Leisure Centre on the Wattbikes with Tony Jolly for Manchester Triathalon.  We did some 3 minute tests to exhaustion to see what avg watts I was putting out and it was 300.  I think I could do a bit more as I was still sore from Thursdays ride (#goodexcuse)

In other news no gym sessions this week.  A great physio session on Wednesday from Marek ( ).  My shoulder is feeling near to 85% now just a little pain now and then and some small issues with the movement but (100) miles better then it was (see what I did there :-)).

This week then I have accumulated a massive 267.55km (166miles) well pleased with that best weekly total ever and I also gained a numb groin!! 

On that note have a good week and sorry for the long and late blog this week!

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