Well most of December 2022 was spent on the Schwinn doing FulGaz challenges but we flew out to Fuerteventura at oh-dark-hundred hours yesterday and today I finished off the year with a real-life 15km road ride on the MTB. So here’s December’s stats showing the 650km overall distance:
As for my weight, well it’s too late to measure like for like today because I’ve had coffee, freshly-squeezed orange juice and croissants out in the garden this morning, but yesterday’s weight was 88.3kg. That’s down by 9.6kg (21.2lbs or 1½ stone) from New Year’s Day 2022 when my weight was 97.9kg. That’ll do, pig!
Well thanks to that utter shitshow that is Brexit, we had to fly back to the UK mid-November so as not to outstay our welcome in the EU.
This meant that there was a switch from the longer real-world rides I was doing on a relatively heavy mountain bike back to indoor cycling on the Schwinn, so it was back to using FulGaz again. I’ve mentioned I decided – very rashly – to do their “LEJOG Challenge“, so the mileage (and time in our gym) has risen a tad…
This month’s total therefore is up to 554.59km.
My weight at the start of the month was 91kg and at the end it had surpassed my first goal and stood at 88.9kg. This is down from 98.2kg as recently as mid-August (1 stone 4lbs weight loss).
As I mentioned in this post, I’m doing the Land’s End to John O’Groats challenge on FulGaz and this was the first day and first stage:
One small problem: although the 20-stage challenge runs until February 2023, I won’t be near the Schwinn to ride it after Christmas as I’ll be back out in Fuerteventura then. Ah… Looks like it’s going to be a tad intense.
If you’ve been checking in on this blog with my monthly workout stats and/or following my latest individual workout activities over here, then you’ll know that while I’m in the UK, I tend to just use our Schwinn 800IC static bike and I’m pretty much settling for FulGaz as my preferred workout program, given its “adaptive” video rides.
I’ve received an update from FulGaz today about the “LEJOG Challenge“: Land’s End to John O’Groats over 500km and 20 stages, most being over an hour and some like Hardknott Pass being a little bit ‘bumpy’ too…
We flew out to our place in Fuerteventura again on Saturday 1st October and after the weekend I started back with the real-world cycling on the Monday, having decided to up the ante a tad with my distances and to make sure I was following my consultant’s orders to do at least 30 minutes a day.
I’m still pleased with the result: 331.33km this month (including walking).
In other news, we’ve gone a bit keto with our diets and the results are promising: I weighed 93.3kg on the Garmin Index S2 scales we have here at the start of the month and today I weigh 91kg (up 0.5kg from yesterday morning, which was a new low since the crash and muscle-wasting in July 2019).
With the Schwinn’s arrival came physiotherapy, pain consultations and then experiments with Apple Fitness+, the first year’s free subscription to Bowflex’s JRNY app, and a trial of FulGaz. The latter two are different from Fitness+ in that Apple are offering different duration classes only whereas the other two offer virtual rides using video of the actual routes.
In FulGaz’s case, they are adaptive workouts: speeding up or slowing down the videos to suit your pace/power which the app reads from the Schwinn. They’re also linked to my Garmin fēnix 7S for my heart rate.
The other benefit of using FulGaz is that after each ride, it emails you a FIT file which you can import into Garmin Connect giving you the full details of the ride. JRNY does not do this, sadly.
So hitting the Schwinn every has been beneficial for me, but also for my weight which has been coming down slowly, thereby improving the load on my knee.
Here’s my stats for the 399km – mainly virtual/indoor – in September 2022:
We were still out in Corralejo for the first half of August 2022.
Back in London, it was a case of hammering the cheapo indoor bike, thinking we’d buy a Peloton bike when we move to Surrey and have a bigger garage and separate gym. The Amazon special was OK, but I couldn’t stand up on it despite the Apple Fitness+ trainers suggesting I could.
And then a couple of things happened: a news article about Peloton’s losses being “an existential threat” made us think about whether a Peloton would be a good idea after all. They’re very expensive and rely on a paid subscription to Peloton if you want to do the guided rides (which I had really enjoyed in Big Sur). If they went bust, the screen would effectively be useless and the purpose of the really expensive bike would go with them.
I looked at what Apple recommended/were using for their Fitness+ workouts and they were Schwinn bikes. In the UK they’re supplied by – amongst others, I’m sure – Fitness Superstore and they had an offer on the Schwinn 800IC (formerly the IC8): already listed at half list price, they had an additional 10% off for the Bank Holiday weekend, so I pressed the button on one for delivery in early September.
Well a lot has happened since the last update in April 2019, the main things being a crash with life-changing injuries and a global pandemic.
So in chronological order, there was a road traffic collision in July 2019 between a car (knobhead) and a motorcycle (me) which ended up costing me two fingers on my left hand and a lifetime of pain. The main injuries are outlined in this blog post, but it meant that after I left hospital and started walking again, I couldn’t grip a handlebar, so motorbikes and pushbikes weren’t on the agenda for a year or two.
Whilst I was recuperating and working full time, COVID-19 came along and we ended up working from home. Given the Brompton was intended mainly for my commute, cycling up and down the stairs between my bed and my desk wasn’t really an option, and so it languished in the garage.
We were intending to buy a villa in Corralejo, Fuerteventura and live there for part of the year but that gift that keeps giving – Brexit – got in the way, so we can only spend 90 out of every 180 days (on a rolling basis) in the Schengen Area and we didn’t get residency due to COVID-19 lockdowns – Spanish and British – stopping us from being able to prove residency to the satisfaction of the Spanish Government (what a wonderful Catch 22 situation).
So we are renting the villa on a ‘rent to buy’ basis and I thought the Brompton would be great to nip to the shops on, so bought a padded travel bag to fly it across. We then decided two things: we would actually hire a car for the full duration of our stays; and that we would both need a bike, so a couple of mountain bikes were bought and that’s what I’m using out here at the moment, racking up 208km so far at the time of writing.
The Brompton remains in the garage…
We are buying a house in Surrey now, near to a railway station, so you never know: I might possibly use it when/if I have to go into London for work. If not, then it may be up for sale…