France, near Cahor, 2003

This blog will be mainly about my efforts to get fit enough to once again take to the roads and enjoy cycling, what had been my main sport from 1962 at the age of 16 to my late 30s when I finally gave up racing. Since then, through the 1980s and 90s, I continued to cycle for transport and for pleasure. This has included touring in France on solos and on a tandem, particularly in the 1980s, the Sea to Sea and other Sustran’s routes. However, I have rarely used my bike over the last 15 years or so.

1964 Portsmouth Road, SCCU 25 mile time trial championship

Me, aged 18, on the Portsmouth Road, near Esher, Surrey in the 1964 SCCU 25 mile time trial championship. I finished 6th I think.

A subsidiary purpose of the blog will be to jot down various memories of my previous cycling experiences from the 1960s and over the next few decades and some thoughts on the contemporary cycling scene. I recognise it is somewhat self-indulgent to make this public but the unfolding story of a desperately unfit overweight 66 year old trying to recapture some fraction of his past fitness and return to cycling may be of interest to a few people. If you are interested, the blog’s first post, Starting Again, tells a bit more of the story of how I got going again, thanks to this year’s Tour De France and some very good friends and their family.

Terry Wassall

12 thoughts on “About

  1. Welcome back to the road Terry, I’m sure you’ll find that much has changed but the suffering. Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on the old days, the new technologies, and the unavoidable joys of riding.

    Tap me up for a ride when you’re in Wales.

    Happy riding!

  2. I have enjoyed your pieces on club racing back in the day and the old motorcycle posts, too. I have never been a racer but for years a die-hard cycle commuter. My daily ride is about 7 miles each way and we have seats and towing rigs for the kids on weekends. I hope to stay fit enough long enough to enjoy some family cycle touring holidays in a few years time. Blogging about it? It is not self indulgence, it is a public commitment 😉

  3. Thanks for the encouragement George. I started cycling by riding to work and back everyday when I was 16, Worcester Park to Leatherhead via Epsom and Ashtead, chasing buses up Epsom Hill. I hope your cycling holidays come off. We may even cross paths one day, you never know.

  4. I’ve decided to start some more serious interval training on the roller in the “outhouse” [= old outside loo, now converted into a shed]. At present following this:
    1. twice a week, 20-25 miles;
    2. twice a week, 10 min warm-up at c90rpm, then after a 10 x 1 minute sprints as fast as possible for one minute, followed by a one-minute recovery at 90 rpm, then 10 minute warm-down at 90 rpm;
    3. less beer… [:>(]

    We’ll see how that goes…

    In solidarity.


  5. Sound pretty serious to me! I’ve upped my sessions on the rollers to 20 minutes now (from 10) and use a slightly lower gear so I can maintain 80 or so for the full session. I’ve no idea on what distance this represents but I would imagine its about 5 miles max. I do this about 3 times a week while I’m still going out on the road but will increase this as the weather get worse. I think I will be able to build up to 30 mins over the next couple of months. I am doing my road circuit about twice a week. This has now been extended from 5.5 miles to 7.5 and the average speed (it’s quite hilly starting with a 1.8 mile drag) has crept up from 9 mph to about 10.5 but this depends to some extent on traffic lights. I’ve now mapped a further extension that would make it 10 miles but I haven’t ridden it yet. I think this will become my staple run through the winter and I would hope to get it down to about 40-45 mins sometime earlyish next year. I might even consider entering some short time trials next summer sometime. Perhaps we should start a series of informal 10 mile TTs around the country for mates, partners, etc.!!

  6. Pingback: On my bike | the mood i'm in

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