Momentous Announcement!

I’ve given up on motorbikes.

There. I’ve said it.

I had the urge to change to a cheaper bike. I was thinking a Honda VFR750, I’ve had a few of them. They are relatively cheap, brilliant handling, very comfortable and have an absolutely bullet-proof engine.

I listed my bike for sale and was driving myself mad, frantically weighing the options for my next “forever bike”. I had a bit of a shock when I stumbled across an article saying the new standard petrol, E10, being 10% ethanol (sugar based bio-fuel) gums up the jets on carburetors, rots the rubber seals, and soaks up water vapour so will rust your tank from the inside. Super. Modern, fuel-injected, vehicles are fine with it. Not so, ’90s carb-ed, VFR750s. Apparently some petrol stations are continuing to supply super unleaded, which is just 5% ethanol. Bit of an eye-opener though.

Anyway, I was going frantic, weighing different options. Then it struck me, whichever bike I get I just don’t need it, and won’t use it. And if it’s got carbs even 5% ethanol will be damaging it if it’s not used.

Just like that it was over.

A dealer has rung me up and agreed to pay the full price I paid for my Daytona, I’ve listed my fancy leather jacket on eBay, and cancelled my knee-down training course and got a refund. I’m keeping my old, workhorse, leather jacket, (trousers, lid, gloves, etc). If I have to get a job where I need to commute I’ll be getting a bike again, but for now, at the very least, it’s over.

And, I’m selling my boat.

Yes, I know, Wendy was right all along. *sigh*

It’s just one more club to which I can’t face going. As with every martial arts club, triathlon club, running club, Russian class…

I’m screwing up my courage to return to the club, assemble the boat, take some pictures, and get rid of it on eBay.

Clean sweep. Rid of everything that’s costing me money and I’m not using.

Then I can relax without the threat of the boat club weighing on me and without an expensive bike, looking pretty and being pointless, sat on the front.

I have my carbon fibre push bike and fancy resistance trainer collecting dust in the shed, but I’ve already paid for them, and I’ll doubtless swing around to triathlon again. If I sell them at a loss I’ll only have to buy them again next time.

Which brings me around to training again. I’m supposed to be on a 5 weeks, light duties, recovery phase. I’ve still not got much work (supposed to be kicking in this month) so I’m bored witless. I’m doing weeks 1, 3 and 5 of the recovery. That’s more than enough. The plan I bought from the world record holder, Camille Herron, is 16 weeks long, so that gives me 7 weeks between recovery and starting it. To make sure I’m not putting all my eggs in one basket, I’ll start her plan and do it for the 7 weeks, then try a flat-out half marathon. If I’m not faster than my last Half I’ll switch back to the Advanced Marathoning plan. It’s brutal but it gets the job done. I’m optimistic about the sub 3 because even though I was really struggling against the wind at Blackpool, when I turned out of it at mile 24 I managed to put in a 7.03 for mile 25! That’s 10 seconds slower than sub 3 pace, at mile 25, after tough wind. Assuming I can crack sub 3, then I have to crack on with ultra training for my 50 mile race in April. And, while I’m in ultra mode, I may as well do a 100 mile race later in the year. That’s the benchmark distance for a ‘proper’ ultra.

I thought ultra training would be incompatible with (fast) marathon training but I was just reading a book that says the big mistake most ultra runners make is focusing on running a gazillion miles every week, really slowly. It said the best thing you can do is concentrate on shorter, more intense, leg and lung burning runs. Those give the most fitness improvements. So I could throw in a marathon or two next year as training.

Once I’ve done the 100 miles, I think I’ll concentrate on faster and faster marathons. Though I’m not ruling triathlon out.

By the way, I know it’s easy to think “you might have a heart attack and die at your age” (as my mate warned me would happen if I tried triathlon, 10 years ago) but there have been some disturbing things going about lately. A twitter chum who is currently in Australia wasn’t allowed to give blood because she was resident in the UK in the 90s and could still be incubating Mad Cow disease (it can take decades to appear, apparently) and I’ve also recently read post covid, people are contracting Pulmonary Fibrosis, both of which are truly awful ways to die. If I was to keel over and kiff it while out on a run, I’d be OK with that. It’s quick and clean. Bish, bash, bosh, done and dusted. I’m not saying I will, or it’s even likely, but if I should that’s OK. Hmmm. Not sure that works as intended. The health benefits, mentally and physically, outweigh the slight risk, but I was just saying in the unlikely event of a heart attack, it’s not the worst thing that could happen.


To kill the time I’ve started on my clarinet and saxophone again today. Wendy was saying earlier I have huge amounts of determination and I stick with it and get it done (about running and such), I said I haven’t, otherwise “how come I can’t play the sax?” She said musical instruments, unlike running, are 80% talent. You can bang away forever, if you’ve not got the talent it just won’t work. I think that might be painfully insightful. I assumed, like in everything else I do, I’ll start off crap, (everyone does) put in the hours, the sweat and tears, and master it. Perhaps I just never will on this one.

Right, enough for now.