Friday, 17 October 2014

Ride with a cold or not?

It's now 05:25 and I'm up, the wood burner has just lit itself off last night's hot coals, I'm catching up with Mythbusters on my Virgin TiVo recordings and I have a nice cup of tea in my cycling mug. At 04:30 I woke in a fit of coughing, spluttering and sneezing. My throat feels like it's been sandpapered and every sinus in my head feels like it's been packed tightly with cotton wool. My first thought? Will I be ok to ride today?

I used to enjoy a lazy morning and a full English breakfast brunch but not now. The idea of missing a Saturday club not has me on the verge of panic attack. I can't let people down, they'll be expecting me, Big Steve is back from holiday, who will be arse end Charlie, the club already had to manage without me for the whole of August...oh get over yourself Richard! When did this obsession start? May 2013 is the answer. That's when I did my first shop ride and I've been hooked on it ever since.

Riding with c&dcycles CC has changed cycling from an occasional past time to a way of life. I've completed challenges and sportives with the aid of my club-mates and much as I enjoy solo rides I've learnt that many things in life are better as a shared experience (hilariously auto correct changed that to flu mates!)

Huntingdon Steeplechase 2013 - one of my favourite photos - apart from missing friends

I have history of this riding when poorly. Almost exactly this time last year my body was in identical
shape. With the Silverstone Circuit Breaker fast approaching I decided to rule #5 it and do the ride. Stupid, stupid mistake. For starters I went on the Saturday ride the day before, felt like shit and decided...nah I'll be ok! Possibly worrying a bit about being unwell my prep on the day was abysmal. I didn't check my tyre pressure which is probably the cause of my puncture I experienced about ten miles into the ride. Then I forgot to eat! Yes that's right I went to do a 90 mile sportive full of cold, with soft tyres on an empty stomach! So the fact it was cold, wet and horrendously windy was just icing on my personal cake of failure. The result for me was dropping from the epic to the standard distance and limping home like a wet rag.

Actual weather footage Silverstone Circuit Breaker 2013

As with all of life's ponderances I decided there was only one way to determine what to do. Ask Google. The efforts of my research can be seen below. The London Cyclist and the Human Cyclist are two of my favourite blogs so have a good browse around those. If you like my stuff you'll love what the proper writers can do. I've also included some forums and the advice agrees universally. Cycling with a cold is not worth it. On the forums there are some horror stories and I'm sure if you read the Daily Mail you'll discover that immigrants are infecting us with Ebola as we cycle but don't go out anyway as we're about to enter another ice age (luckily being in Australia for August I missed the the predicted deadly heatwave.) The most disappointing thing I found was the Livestrong advice. I was expecting:"dose up on lemsip, beechams, echinacea and don't forget your EPO!" None of that, they stick to being sensible, not risking a compromised immune system and not rushing back to full training. Boring! The most common theme is if it's just in your head (snot, sore throat, headache,) then ride. If it's on your chest (chesty cough, green grollies,) then don't ride you could be risking chest infection.

So I've agonised over my decision. Riding is going well. I've fixed all of Clive's clunky clinking cranky noises. A combination of cycling and diet has the pounds falling off me. Ive been under my calorie goal for 45 days in a row on myfitnesspal. There's no way I can eat my normal Saturday food and stay on goal without a ride. Cycling is my personal stress buster and due to 'Go Sober for October,' I can't drink it off either. This is a big decision. So here goes. I think if I'm wondering whether I should ride or not given how much I love cycling and how much I hate missing the Saturday club ride then I shouldn't ride. I could really go for it and pay the fine, £20 for a go sober golden ticket, which allows me to have a drink...for medicinal purposes but hey I think that's cheating. So there you go, no ride for me today but at least I've blogged. Today I will rest, eat well, do a bit of brewing and enjoy the marathon of European Rugby culminating with Racing Metro v Northampton - The English Champions - Saints. 

That's my final decision...well unless I change my mind in the next hour and a half!

Happy snivelling 

No comments:

Post a Comment