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New bike

I picked up my new bike, and a new lock on Saturday.  The bike has a black aluminium frame, 21 speed 'flick' change Shimano gears (I don't like the 'grip shift' system), V-brakes and rather nice looking black spoked 28 inch wheels.  I've popped my favourite saddle on it, too.  It's a sort of cross between 'city' and 'touring' bike.  It has flat handlebars and no suspension.  I like it a lot.

On Saturday afternoon I strapped my heart rate monitor on and did an hours training in our local park.  My legs are a bit stiff as a result and I feel a little saddle sore after my absence from cycling of a few months. On Sunday I went off for an early morning ride to see how long it would take to get to where I work.  On the way back I tried to be clever and explore another route back to 'casa mia' and I got lost! At the same time the handlebar worked its way loose and this made the ride home interesting.

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The bike will also double as work transport around town, hence the expensive, heavy chain and lock I got for it.  I got a black frame in the hope that the bike would look a bit understated and thus not attract the attentions of those who pinch the things, but I'm a little sorry to say that it looks a bit too good, meaning that I shall worry about parking it up for long periods.

I shall pop out this evening to do another training session in an attempt to reduce my ever increasing girth.

Some friends of mine, Hugh and Nicola, re-introduced me to the joys of cycling, mountain biking actually, some twelve years back and I love it.  During my youth my parents got me a three-speed bike, which, I have to say, was a real pain in the hilly area in which we then lived, and struggling up hills somewhat put me off the whole cycling thing.  Getting a good quality bike changed all that and at one point I was even able to whizz up hills. Yes, I used to be quite fit. 25 to 35 miles seemed like nothing.  When I was first in Italy I would do 60 miles in well under a day on the flat expanse which is the Milanese plain.

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