BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

On a bike, riding somewhere. Every day, rain or shine.

Posts tagged ‘Health’

#365daysofbiking Certainly not mad, well, maybe not

Monday March 29th 2021 – When I said here the other day that I’d been riding home all the way from Telford I had a message telling me I must be mad. I strongly disagree. I’m getting more bike/open air time, my mental health is improving daily as is my physical heath. This lockdown porkbarrel will not be in a hurry to depart at my decrepit age, I can tell you. It needs this kind of help.

It isn’t that far. I wouldn’t do it in bad weather, or if very tired. There’s always the rail alternative. and there’s the sights one sees: Like today. Riding near Brewood, the plethora of pheasants were tricky from a safety point of view (they have no road sense) but they are such handsome birds and their antics can be hilarious.

But I had most time for the tiny black puss I met on the edge of a stable yard at Coven: In beautiful condition with the kind of piercing green eyes that make you feel guilty for the sins of your elders. Puss sat her ground (sure she was female) and stared me out resolutely. She was gorgeous.

I got home feeling happier, more relaxed and better physically than I’ve felt for weeks. And only 20 minutes later than had I gone by train, and 30 minutes later than driving.

That’s all win while the weather is so nice.

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#365daysofbiking – Out for a duck

February 6th – My wellbeing is steadily improving, and so is the weather. Finally, it’s seems like spring is on the way and summer might be a thing, too. It’s been a long winter.

I’m still building myself up gradually with rides increasing in length as my energy, and capacity to process food, improves.

It was nice to pause at the Clayhanger canal overflow and chat with the mallards. Unlike the swans, they aren’t fussy about the company they keep.

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#365daysofbiking A small bimble

October 2nd – I was recovering after the hospital appointment, but fresh air called and I took a spin out in the afternoon, enjoying the sun for a circuit of Brownhills, Walsall Wood, Pelsall and Clayhanger.

Slow and leisurely, I wanted to see if I was up to riding. Thankfull I felt no ill effects.

At Clayhanger Bridge I met the Watermead family, all now large birds, having a communal preen by the canalside. They tolerated me, and only went for my ankles a couple of times.

Beautiful, adorable birds.

To my surprise, Mr. Miyagi the turtle was basking too, but slid back in the water before I had my camera. Didn’t expect to see him out so late, but always nice to see.

The fresh air improved my mood and it was nice to find my riding wasn’t impeded.

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#365daysofbiking Going with the flow

December 18th – I’d been in hospital for medical tests, which went OK. I came home, uncomfortable, headachy and disorientated, but a cup of tea, some food and peace and quiet and I was ready to ride.

Sadly it was still raining heavily.

In a short spin around Brownhills the bike was coated in mud and I noted the overflows were in spate. It’s really been quite wet the last week and it’s not registered quite how bad it’s been.

Some dry, cold weather would be nice for Christmas I think…

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February 5th – Recovery continues. I’m still not right yet – I still have a slight but productive cough, glands have been randomly swelling and returning to normal in my neck, and I have a lot of cold sores. But as my chest improves, so does my speed. My homecoming over just over 9 miles against a mild headwind was 39 minutes. That’s a real improvement.

Of course, I arrived home sweaty and breathless, but at least it was achievable.Things are getting better.

January 30th – It’s on the way back up. As my lungs clear, my on-bike performance is improving; my average speed over the same commute journey has gained 1.7mph in a week.

It’s still not up to it’s usual 13-14mph, but I’m getting there.

I’m also really liking the Velo utility for the Garmin Edge 1030 on IQ – it gives some great speed tools in one nicely laid out large data field.

January 18th – Back to work, and very slow on the bike, but the fresh air and feeling of purpose helped me lots.

Passing through Kings Hill Park whose solace and peace I could have done with in the past few days, I was encouraged to see that despite the cold and grey, spring is arranging the furniture and getting the staff ready for another performance.

Can’t wait. Hopefully I’ll be a bit better on the bike by then…

October 1st – Autumn landed with a bump. A saturated, wet day, and a short break in the rain saw me head to Lichfield on an urgent errand – and I got caught by the rain on my way back.

The landscape was wet. I was wet. The skies looked threatening. But Stowe Pool and that view remained captivating.

I was back to where I am every winter – I don’t necessarily want to go out, but I have to. It’s an imperative, get fresh air, exercise, and engage with the outside world – for the good of my health: mental and physical.

Some things make even the most horrible trip out worthwhile.

March 29th – It never rains but it pours. After a period of quite grim ill health, things became a bit more complicated over Easter, and I’m beginning to wonder if life will ever return to normal. But of course, it will – it always does.

So it was into a wet, post-rain landscape that I slipped out into at dusk after a chaotic, frenetic day. Nothing was working, I was in some discomfort and I was exhausted. I was heading for Chasewater, and had looped up through Catshill Junction along saturated towpaths. In fading light, cold and with wet legs I decided to cut the expedition off at Chase Road and head back for Brownhills.

Some days you’re glad just to make it through in one piece.