Sometimes, a plan is doomed to fail.

I was supposed to do the 50 mile / 80 km cycle at the Evans Cycle RIDE IT event in Kent. This was a good stepping stone distance between the 51km cycle I did a few weeks ago, and the 125km cycle I have in a couple of weeks. Sensible training.

Instead, I ended up doing just over 30km. Bugger.

Not pointing the finger of blame, but there were four main issues:

1. We were late to start. The latest you could officially start was 1030, but we didn’t set off until 1035. Luckily the organisers were ok with this. We were late as my boyfriend realised, as we were about to put the bikes in the car, he still had his turbo trainer tyre on his back wheel. This took a good half an hour with the two of us wrestling with the tyre. Bike fitters, we are not.

2. Once we’d set off, five minutes in there was an issue with my boyfriend’s back tyre. Apparently we hadn’t fitted it properly. Cue another ten minutes faffing with the tyre again.

3. As we were so late setting off, there was no one guiding us to the start of the course after the initial lap. We only have ourselves to blame for this, remember no finger pointing. We did get to cycle an extra 10k looking for the start though.

Not all those wiggles were necessary.
Not all those wiggles were necessary.

4. My navigation let us down. We arrived at a roundabout, and the Fun route was signposted to the left, but I couldn’t see any other signs. In fear of going off route again, I chose left.

The Medium Route we'd signed up to do.
The Medium Route we’d signed up to do.
The route we did
The route we actually did

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As you can see from above, left was definitely the wrong decision. We could have rectified some of the oversight by following the route up towards Cliffe, but it was cold and raining, and I was grumpy, so when faced with the choice of cycling 3km back to the finish, or a further 20 or so km, I chose home.

This was a good practice run for the next time my boyfriend comes with me on a cycle. We have learnt we will get ready the night before, set off with other people, and not be put off by rain.

I have found another sportive to do, the London Phoenix Easter Classic Challenge, this is on the 6th April. A bank holiday. My boyfriend doesn’t get bank holidays off work. Which has in no way influenced my choice.

So, 54km or 112km?