Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Out and about...

That David Byrne. He's an inspiration and no mistake! Two days on the run I've got off my lardy arse and put foot to pedal.

It's something I've been meaning to do for a while. The combination of sedentary job, sedentary lifestyle, poor diet and high alcohol intake means I'm far less fit than I could be. I've put on a lot of weight, and I'm increasingly short of breath.

All part of getting older of course, but I would like to stave off the inevitable for as long as I can.

I've got a lovely bike. It's light. It's a well engineered machine that is easy to ride. It cost my stepson quite a lot of money when he bought it, and he gave it to me for christmas a couple of years ago. Since then it's seldom seen tarmac.

Yet it wasn't always that way. I used to think nothing of cycling 30 or 40 miles in a day. I regularly cycled 20 miles a day, just getting to and from work or college. With a rucksack on my back. In the pissing rain and driving wind. No bother. Not really.

Then I got a car, and from then on I took the path of least resistance. The result is a gut and a pair of inadequate lungs.

Yesterday, instead of jumping in the car, I rode into town on an errand. I only rode perhaps three miles, but it was enough to reconnect me.

I enjoy cycling.

There. I've said it. I do enjoy it. I'm far free-er in space, if not in time. And with a bit of planning I can minimise my interaction with busy roads.

Today I cycled to Moreton. To Leasowe lighthouse to be exact. Then I cycled back home again. The sun was shining. I had my Ipod in my pocket, and a pair of headphones covering my ears. (I wouldn't do this if I was riding on actual roads - hearing is a useful sense to have when you don't have mirrors.)

I also have a little tiny video camera. I taped it to the handlebars, intending to record the journey. Sadly that didn't really happen, but I have managed to capture part of the journey. I've put it to music to emulate the cycleing-with-headphones-on experience, and because I found a song that was the same length as the video, and because I'm learning how to use windows movie maker.

Anyway, here's how it looks in Google Earth...

As you can see, it takes me right along the seafront, mainly well away from traffic. A lovely ride, that covered between 10 and 11 miles, although some parts of my anatomy found it a bit uncomfortable. I'm sure if I do it more, I will toughen up.

And the video? Well that's next. The only connection between the music and the images is that the song was the right length to fit. It's called "Mud and Stars" and it's by Dawn Landes.

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