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Showing posts from February, 2014

Ride Stats: February 2014

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Just over 1000 miles, that's still a bit down on the norm, but then February is a short month right?!Average speed kept low by a lot of commuting, but things are starting to accelerate on the training frontThings are gradually coming together for the 2014 season, which starts next weekend! Boom! Just in time! 

Review: Swrve Durable Cotton Trousers

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Swrve trousers have fast become one of my most-worn pieces of casual clothing. The Swrve Indigo jeans (Reviewed HERE) have both a great look and are incredibly tough, and the Swrve lightweight WWR Trousers (Reviewed HERE) are light enough that you can happily wear them in the middle of summer, and will keep you dry in the occasional downpour.

In this review, I take a look at my latest Swrve trousers, the Durable Cotton regular cut. It looks like the American brand has done it again, these are a great pair of 'cycling slacks'.

The Durable Cotton Trousers are intended to be a bike friendly, durable and smart pair of trousers; which will be just at home in the bar or office, as they will be riding around town. The Durable Cotton fabric is a four-way stretch material, with a tough outer that will brush off road spray and dirt, whilst still having a soft inner fabric that is not unlike a set of cotton chinos.

The trousers feature a number of subtle but very well thought out and us…

Weekday Watch: Wightlink RT Through and Off

Most will probably find this a little monotonous, but this is a through-and-off practice along the Military Road with Wightlink-LCM Systems Cycle Race Team. Watch the numbers drop as the speed and intensity increase...

Photo Blog: Spring Sunshine on Culver Down

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A few photos from a sunny ride up Culver Down. New Wiggle kit, the bike is the Mekk Poggio 1.5, also featuring plenty of GripGrab, Salice and High5.

Nutrition: Advice For Multi-day Events

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A multi-day event could be two back to back races, sportives or just a hard block of training such as a training camp or a cycling holiday. Whatever the type of multi-day challenge, there is one thing that should be at the forefront of your mind if you want to get the most out of the experience... Nutrition.

I have several multi-day events coming up this year myself; including stage races, training camps and touring trips. This post gives some advice on products and eating plans that I have used, which have proven effective at helping to recover after a hard day on the bike, ready to make an assault on the next day in the best condition possible.
In chronological order...

Before the eventThe recovery process starts long before you saddle up to ride. If this is the second day of a multi-day event, then your body has been recovering overnight from the previous day's exertions as you sleep. However, by the morning it will likely have run down the supplies of nutrients needed to carry…

Weekday Watch: 'Pantani: The Accidental Death of a Cyclist' Trailer

This could be an interesting watch...

Review: Polaris AM Enduro Windproof Jacket

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Windproof jackets have become one of my most treasured pieces of kit. For commuting, they can be worn day after day with a fresh base layer underneath; for mild rain they are enough to keep you warm and dry without the sweat factor of a waterproof, and for cold weather they form the ultimate outer layer to combine with other thermal layers for warmth.

The AM Enduro jacket from Polaris is designed for mountain bike riding, with their Niteride Jacket intended for road riders (being a bit closer fitting). I have primarily been using the AM Enduro jacket for commuting, which for me involves many aspects of mountain biking; such as wearing a small rucksack, wanting a comfortable layer with a bit more freedom of movement, and needing durable materials. I've been impressed with it so far...
The jacket is a great high-visibility electric blue, with reflective detailing on the sleeves and back, making it ideal for the commute. It uses a dual fabric mix; the X-Wind Windproof fabric on the blu…

Photo Blog: Storm Trooper

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A few photos from a wind battered, but sun drenched Isle of Wight ride. Flooded roads, landslides and cross winds that would split a peloton in half. Here's a flavour of what training rides are like at the moment:

Review: Pedros Tools

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A good set of tools, whether for the home workshop or for your saddle bag, are one of the best investments you can make as a cyclist. Buy cheap and I can almost guarantee you will have to buy again; and as cheap tools wear out, so too do they often wear out your bolt heads and risk damaging other components.

Buy quality tools, and they may well last a lifetime. Pedros make high-quality tools; in fact they compose a significant portion of my home workshop tool-chest. The distinctive yellow label is a sure fire sign of quality; in this post I take a look at two of their innovative multi-tools and their floor pump...


The Pedros Trixie Singlespeed Multi-tool I don't own a singlespeed at the moment, but I do own several old style bikes, which tend to utilise bolts and lock rings rather more than their modern siblings. Therefore, I've still found the Trixie a very useful bit of kit. The tool is precision cut out of one piece of metal; making it super strong and durable. The features…

Review: Bagaboo Rancid Rucksack

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I've got a new favourite bag, guess what... it's a Bagaboo, again. Almost a year ago I reviewed the superb Bagaboo Workhorse Messenger Bag; a hand-crafted custom made beauty from the Hungarian brand. When I started working over in Portsmouth it became my turn-to kit carrier on a daily basis; keeping everything dry, safe and organised for hours and hours of commuting duty.

After six months of using the Workhorse I decided (after much thought) that although I always enjoy using it and it looks practically untouched, despite some serious abuse, I could really do with something a little smaller for daily duty.
Turning quickly to Bagaboo, I was pleased to find that the brand had recently brought out the Rancid rucksack; the smallest pack in their range, but featuring all the quality, durability and style of its bigger brothers. I placed an order...

Like all Bagaboo bags you can customise your Rancid bag right down to the colour of the lining and the amount of straps that you want.…

Weekday Watch: Solo Twenty-Four

Solo Twenty-Four from Sixth Row on Vimeo. This is truly inspirational. Well worth a watch. I'm looking forward to seeing the coverage of the 2014 24hr World Champs in the UK this year.

Review: Rock 'n' Roll Extreme Chain Lube

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Writing a review of lubricants is rarely a particularly exciting topic; either it works, stays put and keeps things working smoothly and quietly; or it is easily washed off, creates a grinding paste and leaves your chain sounding like a cage full of canaries.

I'm pleased to say that the Rock 'n' Roll Extreme Lube is fairly firmly in the former camp. This stuff works, well.
The application of the Rock 'n' Roll lubes is a little unconventional: rather than dripping a small amount on each roller, you cover the chain in lube; applying a layer of lubricant to the whole length both inside and out. You then rotate the chain through a clean rag to wipe of the excess, and in the process clean the chain as well. I was surprised how even after a thorough degrease, there was a significant amount of dirt and grime that came out from inside the chain, as it was replaced by clean lube.
I tested the Extreme Lube on my commuter; a bike that takes some serious abuse from wet weathe…

Review: Look WinterFall Gloves

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A good pair of winter gloves is a vital investment for the four season cyclist; whether you're a mountain biker, roadie or commuter, winter is hard on your hands. The cold, the wet and the wind will attack your extremities, leaving you uncomfortable at best.

Look have long been established in the pedal and frame market (see my review of the Look S-Track Pedals - Link), but have only recently ventured into apparel. Look components are always praised for their build quality and performance, and it seems that the company has thankfully taken a similar tack with their clothing.

The WinterFall Gloves are designed to be worn in extreme weather, when the elements are well and truly against you. They have a windproof and waterproof outer, using a NoWind fabric and a water resistance Hipora membrane. They are lined with Thinsulate Insulation micro-fleece for warmth and the palms feature a synthetic leather material, with gel padding for added comfort and durability.

I've deployed the Lo…