Saturday, July 21, 2007

Exercise bike

Off to the Powerhouse Fitness store in London today to buy an exercise bike.

I used to run a couple of miles three times a week or so. Being insanely competitive with myself, I would use a stopwatch and time myself to the second on every run - each time I must do better! I still have the complex Excel spreadsheet with its raw data and computed trend information ...

Then the knees and hip joint began to hurt rather and I had to stop. Next step was to buy a cycle, but that never really lifted off. Too much traffic, no convenient hills nearby and variable weather meant that I couldn't put a really punishing workout together. I relapsed to the muscular tension of a blancmange.

This was brought home to me recently when I was climbing the stairs to a meeting on the fourth floor at the BT High Holborn site. I couldn't believe I was panting. "This has got to be fixed!" I told myself.

The next catalyst was watching the TV footage of Tony Blair's furniture leaving Downing Street. Out came a wrapped-up exercise bike. "That's it" I exclaimed. "That's the answer - thank you Tony!"

A cursory search on the Internet showed that there are literally hundreds of different models at various price points. There are also two basic bike forms, upright and recumbent. It's impossible to understand this market via the web, so I will have to go to the store and try them out.

More later.

Note on the floods. I had to drive to a meeting in Slough yesterday- the journey back, in the afternoon, was very "interesting". With the M4 closed by a flood-induced landslide near Newbury, I was reduced to single track back roads around Bracknell, driving the car through floods so deep the water came up to the doors - a bit like a driving a boat! Water as high as that makes a curious swishing sound around the bodywork as you drive through it.

Compared to my sister, who had to wade five miles home, abandoning her car, and my niece, who had to spend the night in her workplace, which had become an island, I had it easy.