After several months of late nights, little sleep, no exercise and a bicycle layoff, I celebrated a return to cycling with breakfast at Changi with some kakis. a few dyas earlier I prepared for this 30km ride by waking up my body with a ride to NUS – this had my heart pounding, myself feeling quite faint at the effort of the climbs and a great desire to snooze. Any semblance of cycling fitness was long gone.
Company was important for both safety now as well as motivation and I had a few ready souls respond – Kenneth (@acroamatic) on his foldable would wait at Bishan, Aaron would glide in from Sengkang and Adrian (@lekowala), well he bailed after midnight to RUN from Bishan! Ladybug planed to join for breakfast with Min Yee and haul my sorry self back as there was no way I could ride back in present condition.
We cycle, Adrian RUNS!
At 5am, the alarm rang and I dragged myself out of bed at a time I have ben going to bed. The body raged against this abuse but once I set off at 5.40am, the cool air and quiet roads made myself ask, why I had waited so long. After a 30 minute sprint to Bishan, I was late and Kenneth could see I was struggling on the Ang Mo Kio Avenue 1 slopes already. Enough so I took a break at the Serangoon Park Connector where we waited for Aaron, unaware of the SMS he had sent me as I was too exhausted to even think about checking my phone.
We rode on after a 10 minute break only to find Aaron waiting ahead, having taken the new shortcut from Sengkang. He too was re-associating himself with the saddle and was muttering about his lack of form. Sadly we get this way often and it’s always a fight back to regain some form before the NTU Round Island 129km ride in the earlier part of the year.
Aaron and me riding towards Pasir Ris, photo by Kenneth
I was missing my rear-view mirror somewhat, which had broken of after the bicycle keeled over from a flat tyre during my preparatory ride. Happily, this early morning ride has little traffic so I could cope. At Pasir Ris, we passed rows of cars parked for the Haji ceremony and as I struggled up the slope before Loyang Avenue, Keneth pulled ahead and sprinted away. this rabbit action was great for my bike speedometer was registering an average speed of 18.1km/h and I was hoping to raise it to something decent. So remembering I was not riding back, I sprinted best i could and only saw Kenneth at Changi! By this time the speedometer was up to 19.0km/h which I could live with.
In the end, we had hit Changi at 7.40am, a very slow ride. However, I was real happy I had simply made it. Adrian showed up some minutes later, looking as if his 21km run had been effortless! And finally two Zendogs drove down to join us for breakfast. It felt like that 2007 Top Gear episode for a moment.
Prata delight is everlasting!
“Kenneth folds it in 10 seconds.”
Photos by Adrian Loo
Eventually I got home and that night, I snored fit to wake the dead!