(1 replies, posted in Training)

Hi All,

I fully ruptured my achilles in mid november playing tennis and have been recovering from the repair operation since. I'm now fully weight bearing, still can't walk properly (as the tendon is still quite tight) without a crutch and am allowed on the Turbo trainer which is just the best news ever! The physio has given some general exercises to do but I'm a month away from getting on the wobble board! I'm doing gentle rides and easy spinning sessions currently to start working my legs and get some light fitness back. Have any of you done this before and  \ or or have advice on training and recouperation, or specific exercises for it? I'm very mindful of being in a high risk zone as I've just taken the boot off and the tendon has healed but is not right for a few months yet, hence the Turbo only until April at the earliest!

Anyway - thanks for reading and any advice is more than welcome! Have a good one,



(90 replies, posted in Training)

+1 for Jewboy Matt - I was running Sauserwinds on tubeless and the sidewalls were torn up by rocks on the course, at which point I was eaten alive by midges trying to repair them. Chunkier tyres and midge spray (or skin so soft, which works equally well and won't melt your clothes) in the pocket this year for sure!


(6 replies, posted in For sale)

Hi Ben,

Could I take a cadence and a speed sensor please? Am on Thanks! G


(3 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

I'm running Aries rotors and pads on my XTR brakes and they're lovely. Good feel and powerful braking, can squeek a wee bit when wet but that's normal. Great value all round I think!


(7 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

I bought some GX2 magnesium grips on the back of Matt Page's review in Wiggle and I love them. Really comfy, good on climbing and great once you get past 6 hours of riding unlike normal grips - thoroughly recommended.

Had a few issues converting my Easton XC One wheelset to tubeless. Bought some Racing Ralphs, JRA Rim Strips and stans sealant. I couldn't get them to hold air overnight over a week or so :-(. I'd emailed the guys at JRA for advice on fettling etc. Managed to get the tyres to hold pressure by lowering pressure to 10 psi, rode along for 20 minutes to get a good seal everywhere, then inflated properly and went out on the trails for a few hours. Sorted! So, the fantastic after sales support from Matthew and the guys from JRA was very welcome indeed - as was their patience - thanks guys! Always good to know when people can really be relied upon . . . .


(19 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

Cheers guys - really appreciate the tips and advice. It's strange that I never really thought about how I pedal - I've always assumed that the bouncy bit was weight (there is enough of it at 15 stone!) rather than mashing. It's not something I notice on climbs so will focus on more fluid motion and see how the turbo and trail sessions work out.


(19 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

Roffster and Langers - many thanks for that. I'll get on the turbo tonight and try that one out in private :-)


(19 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

Thanks Langers - appreciate the comment. Without wanting to sound really stupid how would I work on the stroke? Is it just trying to be smoother? G


(19 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

I run tubes and tubeless depending on situation and always ride on very high pressures - pretty much 50 psi or very hard to touch. I weigh 95 kilos and when I tried lower pressures I hate the bike squirming around or the little bounce I get when pedalling. Tthe tubeless advantage for me is the puncture resistance rather than pinch punctures.


(11 replies, posted in Training)

Thanks - I decided to go with the XC Racer Shop preferred option - Skins. I ordered them yesterday and they arrived this morning - which is just excellent in my view and they're very comfy. Thanks guys!


(11 replies, posted in Training)

Is there any brand that's particularly recommended, be it Skins, 2XU, Sugoi or whatever? Thx!


(19 replies, posted in Training)

Red bull has been banned across a few coutries including canada and france as it may cause irregular heart beat and kids tend to go ballistic after drinking it.

and it does make me feel very sick as well, so I avoid it. Double espresso does the job equally well without the nausea . . .


(208 replies, posted in Training)

Went out for a 3 hour trail ride in the snow and loved it - thumbs only went numb when got home - result! MJB - very funny post indeed!


(12 replies, posted in Training)

This is very extremely helpful Maddie - thank you very much!


(8 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

Could someone please post the links for the chainrings they've bought that fit??? Had a heart attack at the price of shimano chainrings, never mind the coming winter!!! G

To be fair the only problem I've had with tubeless in 18 months is when I first fitted the tyres and didn't do it properly. Doh! Only had 1 puncture since then and that was a large piece of glass which would have cut through tubeless or tubes. One puncture repair later it's held - perfectly well - for 9 months. Suggest you go for it!

That's a great link - thanks very much indeed! G


(4 replies, posted in Other Stuff)

Thanks for this Beerhiker - have just signed it. Are you posting this on any other forums?? I was out on the road today and nearly knocked off twice by numpties overtaking me with less than a foot to spare - with a clear view ahead and no traffic coming the other way.  Hand signals was only half of it . . . . . .

Thanks Neil - really appreciate that!

Thanks chaps . . . . appreciate that.

Neil - am starting to learn more about training peaks and haven't really looked at WKO yet. I've used my polar S720i for a couple of years as a pacing tool and record of rides etc. but never really trained - just ridden a lot - so am slow and enjoy red wine too much to get any quicker, in spite of riding lots of endurance events solo. So, I am nearly 40 and it's now or never - I Need to train, do intervals, weight training and speed work etc. to avoid my increasing wine belly and a lifetime of mediocre riding. Intervals wipe me out so I need to stick to a sensible programme and need something motivational & quantifiable to keep me going over the winter, and on the turbo. Yikes. Sounds like a mid life crisis but I'm aiming for a good 2010 - but done without huge cost as I'm not working right now either. Anyway - all feedback welcome!

Hi All,

I've been looking at training programmes and diaries etc. for next year - would like to do better at 24's than this year! How do you rate training peaks software and the online coaching specifically? Are there any similar sites in the UK?



(55 replies, posted in Events)

Having looked at the MBM website I think we're lucky it happened at all - well done to all on that! I'd entered the four hour ride - and with a slightly sticking piston wore my front brake pads out in one hour 15 minutes. Not happy at that at all - looking forward to the next round though!


(11 replies, posted in Training)

Just tried out the Ergon GRx Magnesium grips and they're awesome. Very comfy, nice on teh climbs and well worth a bash!


(11 replies, posted in Training)

As a thought - try the bristol bike fest for some excellent 12 hour race practice sometime in June 2010. Great course, fab atmosphere, good fun and a very good way to find out how you'll cope, and very close to the South West and major motorways. You know you want to . . . . . . website isn't live for 2010 but here anyway:


(38 replies, posted in Other Stuff)

Event - Kielder 100 as it was such a huge effort and gamble for the organisers, and a brutal ride showcasing the Scottish (and English!!) Borders, all very close to my home town. Still chuffed I finished that one - more than any 24 solo race!

Rider - Sally Bigham - great effort that lady!

Supporter - Martyn Salt And Inevent - keep it going please!

Young Rider - Steve James

Product - Exposure Lights, just the best!



(11 replies, posted in Training)

This is a tough one - after longer endurance rides everything usually hurts and I've had a few hand problems to be fair - I tend to use Yeti Grips and X Lite bar ends to give a few changes to hand position, but will try the ergon grips and the specialized ergonomic grips out over winter. I tend to ride less on the heel of my hand further into the event. I'd also look at well padded gloves as an essential piece of kit - my old specialized ones were nice but the new ones are all a bit thin now. Avoid gloves with no padding on the ulnar nerve area. If holding a scalpel is important you've got 8 months to play about and find what works for you! Hooray!

Also - note that gloves change completely when very wet, and the only way you'll know how bad your hands will get is to start riding for 6 hours or more. Happy training and the best of luck to you!!!!


(14 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

Have been looking at this myself, and Merlin are doing the Blizzard for £399 (weighs 4.4lbs) but the R8 is a lovely frame and at least painted in Britain!! Nice colour too. . . .


(11 replies, posted in Bontrager Twentyfour12)

I've done 10 24h races solo unsupported - which is not really a good idea in retrospect - especially when driving home afterwards. My other half doesn't do bikes, mud or camping and it's a lot to ask someone to give a weekend up to help, so I've never imposed on a pit bitch. That aside, I've had plenty of help from other solo's helpers which has been very, very welcome I have to say - thanks to Pitch & the guys at Mayhem and the guys from Ticket 2 Ride at bonty!

Get your pace, nutrition, hydration and mechanical (spare bike will help and lots of different tyres) strategies sorted and you'll be fine - but next time I'll be bribing a helper as it'll make life a lot easier - especially in the night sections when the drive home wears heavily on your mind. Also, any weather problems mean that you'll lose 10 minutes a lap cleaning the bike, so your results will suffer, as will you, without a helper. Having said that, I'm just glad to have finished the event but want to do better so will get a helper next year. If nothing else get someone to drive you home on Sunday or camp overnight. Good luck!

Hi All,

I'm wanting to build up a hardtail for enduro and marathon riding (simpler than full-sus and no fuss, especially over winter). I'm going to buy a frame (aiming for around £800 or so and will buy new for the warranty) and build up as I have a garage full of spares, and tempted by the Van Nicholas Zion or Global Th1.5 for Ti or something like the Scott Scale, cannondale taurine or trek 9.8 but am worried about longevity on carbon frames (am also 96 kilos due to my wine hobby so heavier than the average) - any advice or recommendations out there on the pro's and cons? I like the carbon feel but worry that carbon would not stand up to years of XC use and the odd crash.....

All comments welcome. Thanks!


If the frame is still for sale could you please send me through pictures to Thank you!


(31 replies, posted in Lift Sharing)

I'm with little c on that - I wasn't laughing by Newcastleton. I'm Very grateful to have finished in one piece. I recorded the same amount of elevation - and my brand new pair of sintered pads front and read had gone by the end of the race - I've done 24 hour races solo and never had that. Anyway - well done to all for started and well done to all that made the finish line!


(10 replies, posted in Lift Sharing)

Indeed  - thanks to Sara, the great marshalls, the course designer (who admittedly I was cursing from 48 miles to 65 miles) and the fab ladies at the Olive Cafe - soup and rolls saved my life at that point. That ride was much harder than I thought - the distance was fine but I was heartily sick of climbing by Newcastleton. Also, as a Scot I loved the two pipers - a very special touch and thanks for that! Well done to all that started and look forward to next year!


(7 replies, posted in Lift Sharing)

Given the lovely weather (rain, more rain and some more on top just in case it appears!) what would the organisers \ locals \ other riders suggest for tyre choice? Do you think it's time for mud tyres or are the trails we're riding on all weather and likely to hold up? Thanks all!


(7 replies, posted in Lift Sharing)

It is looking a wee bit sketchy I have to say - hopefully it'll be dry during most of the day before and the event day itself . . . … NE48%201HQ

Have cleaned up my Jones Mud 1.8's just in case :-)


(31 replies, posted in Lift Sharing)

Done!!!! Any idea if it starts heading east or west though?


(31 replies, posted in Lift Sharing)

Good point! I'm taking my USE joystick on the ride just in case . . . . . . there will be a lot of competition for the red lantern I think!


(31 replies, posted in Lift Sharing)

Thanks for the map - superstar!


(8 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)


I think the Mud X 1.8 is awesome - really good in mud. In serious, gloopy mud (mayhem, SITS) Schwalbe black shark mud 1.5's are excellent if not essential. For General use the 2.1 Nobby Nic's are great all round - tubeless or not, but more tread than the rocket ron. Fire XC pro's are nice too - it's all a question of style, your own weight and racing vs riding!


(31 replies, posted in Lift Sharing)

I have to say Em and the other contributors are spot on here - if you (or someon else for that matter) crashes or is incapacitated in what may be cold, wet weather in the wilderness hypothermia is only a matter of time - made worse by injury or shock. If you ride with a helmet on for safety reasons this is no different. It's a matter of personal responsibility - bit like Russian Roulette I suppose.

I'm from the Scottish part of the area and the climate can be very changeable. If we get some hard weather coming in for the race we're all going to have a very, very bad day, not to mention the distance. Please - a space blanket, first aid kit and decent trail repair kit are essential in the wilderness. For some 250g in weight or so you can help save a ride or a life in extremis. Is that too much to ask?

Think there's some great points on both sides here - but with no organisers there can be no event . . . . .  but the OCD arugment is pretty compelling :-) On the bright side there's more info on the feed stations on the website now so I'm a lot happier knowing that detail - I prefer breaking the distance down by stops so think it'll be an excellent event! Was swayed by the hugely inspirational intro on the leadvill 100 website -


(60 replies, posted in Events)

What a great event. Fabulous course - best of the year for me and to cap it all some sussex beer on the finish line. Awesome. Thanks all!!


(2 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

Hi all, had a fault with my triple piggy back battery not charging before SITS and took it along to the race and asked the guys from exposure what was wrong. They'd diagnosed a faulty connection, let me borrow a fully charged triple for the race and I received my repaired triple cell battery back this morning. Fantastic product and absolutely excellent support when it matters from the guys at Exposure - thank you very much!!!


(1 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)


Try this - - good guide on some basic how to do's!


(6 replies, posted in Lift Sharing)

Indeed - Sigma Sport have just started stocking it - … BrandID=66


(56 replies, posted in Bontrager Twentyfour12)

I know some riders complained about being overtaken badly and I really sympathise with them, as a 24 soloist I'm overtaken more than most! However, I'll also leave the racing line open when I know a faster rider is behind me and ask them to pass on whatever side - being proactive at being slower is better for both parties I think!!!! IMHO being overtaken is a two way process and sometimes even the fast riders make mistakes. I helped two riders who had crashed in an overtaking incident on the descent and the guy who caused it didn't do it on purpose but these things happen - that's the consequence racing on sweet, fast singletrack.

For what it's worth I've been overtaken lots by various torq riders on many events and they haven't been rude - just flat out, very fast and very serious. Good to see that they take this seriously and the point made by EM about Torq kit for sale to all is a very good one!


(17 replies, posted in Bontrager Twentyfour12)

All fab stuff - a great race all round I think. I'd like to say a huge thanks to Lee Imrie and his crew from in the solo area - they kindly covered over my meagre pit area when it started to drizzle and were a great support to me through the race. Sorry I missed you when you left - was having a pre drive home snooze. Thanks Guys!!!!!


(21 replies, posted in Lift Sharing)

Does anybody know when the course map or elevation profile will be available?? Quite fancy the event but need to know I won't be climbing K2 on route!


(56 replies, posted in Bontrager Twentyfour12)

I thought the event was great and i agree with Ade - 98% of the riders were very polite and as always some muppet will always drop their gels, leave tubes on the course and are unable to pass well - always a very small minority. I'm a fairly slow soloist and enjoy that challenge so am overtaken more than most and the 2% are present at every event. The course was great and there was only 151m of climbing per lap. Hope we get better weather next year to get more singletrack on the course. Thanks to Martyn and the team for another great event!


(5 replies, posted in For sale)

No worries Maddie - friendship matters most!!


(5 replies, posted in For sale)

Hi Maddie,

I think you're right about the weather :-( Are they tubeless ready?


(7 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

Whilst factory wheels are very nice indeed I'd suggest hand built wheels every time. I'm 95 kilos (fat git I know!) and have the wheels built with hope or shimano hubs that are easily repairable and rims, spokes & nipples that can be replaced anywhere - including your local trails or races - which really matters as a lot of your factory wheels need speciifc parts that are often hard to get hold of. I've ridden lots of 24 hour and 12 hour solo events on handbuilt wheels and had no wheel problems in 5 years - that dependability is crucial. Crash damage is also much easier and cheaper to repair as TD says. You could also look for some second hand wheels on the forum here or on singeltrackworld...... And 1800 grams is a lot for a wheelset - you'll feel the benefit of lighter wheels on the climbs.


(13 replies, posted in Bontrager Twentyfour12)

So if it does bucket down on the weekend which hopefully it won't - is it a trail raker type course (or even worse black shark mud) or are nobby nic's okay? Hope the forecast is wrong too - lots of rain Thursday PM :-(


(13 replies, posted in Bontrager Twentyfour12)

Hi all,

Does anyone know how much climbing there is per lap, say in relation to mayhem or SITS; and is the course all weather? (unlike Mayham or SITS!) Cheers!


(5 replies, posted in For sale)

Hi Oli,

Think £130 is a bargain - happy to take it at that if you still have it! Please mail me on and we can sort payment out by bank transfer or whatever!!


(5 replies, posted in Events)

excellent stuff - many thanks all and see you there!!!


(5 replies, posted in Events)

Hi all,

Any idea what condition the course will be in for Sunday (well drained, super muddy or whatever!)? Am having a  tyre choice dilemma so any ideas welcomed! Fancy Cross Marks as they're comfy on distances but not sure if it'll be trail raker conditions if it rains!! THX!

Thanks for the advice all - much appreciated! I struggled with the hozelock bottle setup as riding solo last year I had to clean the bike every lap - cleaning the bike was worse than the lap :-( Great inflation tip - thanks GOP!

Hi All,

After last years SITS hideous mud I'm going to invest in a 12v jetwash I can plug into the care - spent 25 minutes a lup cleaning the bike and won;t do that again! I have looked at the dirtworkwer and something similar on Chain Reaction Cycles. Any views on what's better, more reliable or just suited to sorting muddy drivetrains out? Many thanks!

As a quick update and note for others to avoid my costly mistake - too much air pressure on the deelite valve side causes the clunking and short travel because it's blown. Ooops. I know the pressure is on the side of the leg - bit of human error with the shock pump sadly :-(   A quick trip to those nice people at Tim Flooks Tuning sorts it out and gets it better than new (not to mention fitting a handy lockout to it as well!).

Black shark mud 1.5 and trailraker 1.95 are fab for these conditions - for SITS and MM mud the black shark rules for clearance as well. However, as I weigh 15 stone I do pump them up a lot though. Going tubeless so will see how that goes on nobby nics. I had AWFUl chainsuck as well - very sincere apologies for the tourettes to those who passed me as I had to run all the xxxxxxg hills after lap 1 :-( Noticed my chain was slightly worn though but rings in great nick - so as above any advice on the chainsuck is more than welcome (and no, am not strong enough to ride the whole thing in the big ring :-) !


(20 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

Has anyone ever used wheels with DT Swiss 4.2d rims on a tubeless setup? Any problems with the conversion kit, tyre choice and losing pressures? THX!


(6 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

Thanks! The forks are 2007 so the old design - no lockout on them sadly. Would there be any obvious signs if the seal was leaking? It appears ok....


(6 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

Thanks - will try it out!!

My SID race forks (100mm travel supposedly!) are only achieving 30mm of travel before bottoming out - I run them on higher pressures as I'm quite heavy (95kilo) and have set them up as per the manual on positive and negative air pressures - any ideas on what's wrong or where I'm going wrong? Any help is appreciated!


(4 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

I've been looking at the exposure enduro maxx as it's got a good burn time for the two LED's - 10 hours, or 3 hours on all 3 and is very lightweight and easy to use. (have a joystick on helmet mount and it's fab!) I currently use a Lumicycle HID which is great, but really needs to be turned on and left on and the battery bag is a pain. Anyone out there got comparisons in use on the exposure lights versus the lumicycle? I've had over 3 years of no problems lighting and am concerned about the number of broken exposures on the forum!


(8 replies, posted in Bikes and equipment)

I really like low riser bars as they're more comfortable than flat bars IMHO - what do you think of using bar ends with risers? It seems to be a bit of a no-no but is this just fashion \ a trend?


(5 replies, posted in Training)

As a thought on this comment from paulo - took his comments on board and had a fitness test yesterday with sportstest - it was quite a revelation. I'm much fitter and stronger than I thought, but have loads more fat on me - up to 7 kilos of dead weight - than I expected. I also need to start actually training when I ride, rather than just go out for a ride! It's a good benchmark to start a training plan with - so could be worthwhile doing to plan your training over the winter. and in my case cutting out the bottle of merlot and large pack of crisps every night :-(


(7 replies, posted in Events)

Indeed - All good stuff! Any idea what the course is like regarding tyre choice? Is it quite muddy or fast rolling? THX!

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