The end of the light

We are just over a week away from the doom and gloom time of year for many, here in the UK. Late October signals the move back to GMT from BST as the clocks go back one hour. The main result is almost all commutes back from work will be in the dark for the next 3 months. By mid February the glimmer of hope returns before late March sees us welcome back BST with grateful open arms.

Many I work with hold this view and I do understand it. Motivation can be hard but that is all down to self discipline and as someone who can have steely resolve, when required, it is just time to buckle up and get on with it.

Yes almost all of my 2016 targets have now been met, (just swimming ones to nail now), but I will keep pushing on. I find Autumn and Winter highly rewarding times to ride. For a start there are fewer cyclists on the road, so being out at this time of year is a sign of dedication. I like that as even the pros disappear for their annual break from cycling in October/November.

No, this is not some stupid macho thing, I just like the solitary nature of riding, that is my thing. I do, from time to time, like to remind myself of what it is like to ride with others but on the hole I am a lone cyclist.

So the dark nights are not a sign of doom and gloom for me, they are a time to rejoice and enjoy what is a very special time of year, renewal. As the plants die back and shed their foliage they prepare for the following spring and I view my own fitness in the same way.

Keep my progress from 2016 at a nice steady level. I will gain weight but try to keep it to 3-4 pounds extra so I then have a lower base from which to push on in 2017. The next big milestone for me is the summer of 2018 and Mont Ventoux.

I have to do it and soon, before I’m 50. The plan is to shed as much weight as possible in the next 20 months then I will give myself the best chance for the giant of Provence. I’m looking at 40 pounds lost, which is no small thing. I will strive to do it, keep pushing on.

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