Unfortunately I've had a bit of a flare-up with my arthritis, so my tentative return to cycling ground to a halt last week and I haven't cycled since May 20. I've doubled the dosage of my medication in recent days (don't panic — it's allowed, as I have been on a half-dose since mid-April) and so when I woke up this morning and flexed my hands, there was no pain which meant I could clamber onto the bike.
And wow, what a wonderful perfect summers' morning greeted me when I stepped outside. I was out on the road at 7.45am and it already felt lovely and warm. Thankfully I was in short sleeves (with my fluoro vest over the top) but there was a fairly strong breeze to prevent me getting too hot.
Even at this relatively early time there were loads of cyclists on the road, more than I've seen in recent outings. When I trundled up The Strand I made most of the way in a tight little bunch — we took up the bus lane — which is one of the safest and most exciting ways to commute, it has to be said. I wish that happened more often.
The return journey home was fast and furious, despite the heat. I think the speed was drug-enhanced, as I'd enjoyed a strong black coffee shortly before leaving the office, so the caffeine was surging through my system. I actually felt very strong going up the "hills" and flew past a professional-looking courier who was doing it hard up the South Carriage — poor bugger.
I might not have done terribly much cycling over the past six months, but I don't think it will take long to get back into shape. If I can keep riding into work at least four days a week, I'm also hoping I might shift a bit of weight. Between December and mid-April I lost half-a-stone by not drinking alcohol, but then I got back on the wagon and that half stone has returned. I'm not a heifer but it wouldn't take much for it to get to that stage.
[My weight, for the record, taken this morning was 77.8kg]