Two weeks ago I set myself a little challenge when I realised that I was only 113.5 miles short of my1000th mile (since January 1st). With 2 full weeks left till the end of the month, could I make it to 1000? It was only 56.75miles a week; which isn't that much over my recent weekly mileage, but would I be able to do it as achieving 50 is a push. Hmmm... but now I'd thought about it, I just had to do it - I'd be too disappointed if I didn't at least give it a try. How good would I feel if I achieved 1000miles in 6mths?
So the pressure was on. Trouble was I was still recovering from the eye infection and riding into strong winds on dusty roads with 100's of kamikazee flies was just aggravating it even more. I needed some sunglasses. It sounds stupid I know, but I don't own a pair of sunglasses. They just don't suit me. I've tried various styles but they have all looked odd. It's not even a vanity thing - everyone agrees - they look wrong! Anyway, there was no getting away from it, I needed something so I got myself a cheap and cheerful pair of Endura sunglasses.
Week one was eventful. There were rides a plenty; a number of easy 10milers to meet Mikey from work, some windy 10milers to meet Mikey. There were some hazardous moments including pedestrians not looking before they stepped onto the road. There were some fantastic successes; making it up hills that have previously defeated me and clearing some technical stuff that has psychologically beaten me in the past. There's been some interesting sights; a sweet donkey, lots of horses and 100's of end-to-enders. By that Sunday I'd achieved 57.2 miles and was chuffed to bits.
I decided to have a rest day on Monday. My legs needed it. Unfortunately that evening I received a surprising phone call from my Dad (who I haven't seen in years). He wanted to visit at the weekend. Eek... That meant I only had 4 days to achieve my goal. I rode Tues, Weds, Thursday and Friday, but it was horrible. I shouldn't have put this pressure on myself. I couldn't do 56 miles in 4 rides! I was no longer in the mood to ride as I had already been defeated. I was just forcing myself out and thinking only about the miles not smiles. By the end of Friday I was still 13miles from my target.
I guess it wasn't as bad as it could have been though, as after after all Sunday wasn't the last day of June (Its just my mile log works from Monday to Sunday so I'd wanted to do by then). I guess all was not lost! Plus, there was the possibility I could fit in a ride after my dad left on Sunday evening.
To my suprise, Dad left just after lunch, so that gave me a 2nd chance. Trouble was I was exhasusted and found myself asleep on the sofa for an hour or two whilst Mikey watched the Nat Championships on Eurosport. At 6pm I forced myself to get ready for a ride. I could do it!! I was tired and my legs ached before I had even completed a mile. My legs were like lead. I started to doubt that I would get the elusive 1000th mile but we continued until Oooops! I had a puncture!
It was OK though, we had a spare tube. Oops, well, it would have been OK, if the spare hadn't had a puncture too. Opps no... after patching the spare, we found that it had a second hole. Grrrrr this spare was useless..... so it was back to the original tube to patch it. We were then back on the road. We didn't get much further when I found myself hurtling into a hedge as the repaired tyre deflated. EEK! I wasn't best pleased. The patch hadn't held as it was too close to the valve join. Someone was trying to tell me something - this 1000mile target was trying its best to elude me. I started to push my bike. I'd had enough but Mikey insisted on another repair, so it was back to the holey spare tube. Thankfully, both patches held and somewhat deflated (in spirit) I finally made it to my 1000th mile.
I'd done it! I was happy, but I couldn't manage a smile. It had been hard work getting here, made even harder by my stupid plan of reaching a silly target that was slightly out of my reach.
Ahhh, but without that silly plan I wouldn't be able to make the claim that I have riden 1000miles in 6mths. Thats 400miles more than I had planned to do back in January and 1000miles more than I had done this time last year. I am a happy bunny!