The JogBlog Guide To (Not) Buying A Bike

How many bikes are there in the world? A billion? Must be a million, at least. I only wanted one, so why was buying one so damn difficult?

As me and Shaun are around the same size, I thought I could borrow his bike for the upcoming London Duathlon but, as mentioned before, he likes to perch high up, while I prefer to be nearer the ground. Short Man Syndrome, I reckon. Still, SMS or not, it meant his bike wouldn’t be suitable for me so I had to have a hunt for one of my own.

I’d been recommended Halford’s Boardman Fi Hybrid Comp and, while I had to admit it was pretty, and Shaun said it had a good spec, it was High Street and I didn’t want to be laughed at for having a High Street bike. But it was worth having a look at and as it wasn’t in stock at the local branch, I thought I could order it online and if I didn’t like it, I could cycle it 1.5 miles up the road to the nearest Halfords and get my money back.


So, yay, that was my bike sorted. So I thought.

I tried ordering it online but I kept getting errors, then Shaun found it was in stock in the Canterbury branch so we drove up there to have a look at it in real life. Up the stairs we went to where the bikes are kept and went over to the Boardman bit and there was a big gap where the Fi Comp should have been. We asked the man on the counter where it was and he pressed a few keys on his computer and said it’d been put into quarantine out the back (yes, I did ask if it had rabies. Yes, he ignored my stupid question). I asked if I could have a look at it and he went out, then came back and said it had no back wheel. Then he pressed a few more keys on his computer and said the production of it had been suspended. Dammit!

We went home and Shaun did a bit of searching and said ‘aha, you must buy this bike, it’s excellent’. The excellent bike was a Giant Dash 4 and I thought ‘ooh, that’s pretty’ and the next day I got up, switched on my computer and ordered it. I was so excited by the prospect of my new bike, I phoned the shop (using the phone is an extremely rare occurrence for me) and asked if their next day delivery meant next day or next working day (I’d ordered it on a Friday morning). You can read what the man said here, or I can just tell you that the gist was it would be delivered in about four or five days. Bah.


Still, I could wait that long, couldn’t I? Of course I could. On the following Tuesday, the man from the bike shop rang and said there was a problem with my bike. It had come in dented and they couldn’t send it to me and he couldn’t find stock of any more anywhere. Not locally, not in the UK, not in the entire goddamn universe. This bike no longer existed. My little heart sank and I said ‘oh’. He said the new model would be out on 20 August (about two weeks’ later) and he could send me the same model for the same price or he could give me a refund. I said okay then, I’ll have the new one, all the while thinking BUT WHAT COLOUR IS IT? but not wanting to sound too much of a girl, despite actually being a girl and therefore it probably being okay to sound like one if the occasion warrants it (or not, as the case may be).

I put the phone down and emailed Shaun and said WAA, NO BIKE, THERE ARE NO MORE TO BE FOUND ANYWHERE, WAA, NO BIKE, BLAH BLAH BLAH and he rang Giant who said yes, that’s correct, there are no more of this bike anywhere in the world, soz. (They may not have actually said soz.) He enquired after the new model and asked if they had a photo of it and the specifications but they said no, the man in the shop wasn’t talking rubbish and the new one was out in a couple of weeks, but no one knew what it looked like or what the specifications were. It was a mystery bike, a bikey lucky dip.


I started looking at the Boardman again and Halford’s website said it was back in stock, so I put it in my virtual shopping bag, asked to collect it from Ashford and entered my credit card details. It didn’t like my credit card details and I was on my way out and didn’t have time to piss about with it. Shaun was giving me a lift to the station and said he’d pop into Halfords on the way back and ask about it there. He texted me later and said ‘I’ve just bought a bike. You can buy it from me for £499.’ I HAD A BIKE, HALLELUJAH AND STUFF! I later found out that my credit card details didn’t go through because Halifax wondered why I was buying a high price item when usually my credit card is full of things costing 99p from Amazon. Either that or they didn’t believe I was buying something as sporty as a bike and thought it must be dodgy.

Anyway, here’s  my bike.


Pretty isn’t it? And not only is it pretty, my average mph has gone up from 10mph to 13mph. IMMA GONNA NAIL THAT DUATHLON*

In case you’re wondering what the mystery bike does look like, now it’s been released, it looks like this.


I obviously had to go and have a look in a ‘look what you would have won’ kind of way and I’m very happy it’s blue as I hate blue.

*My apologies for the atrocious language.

London Duathlon super sprint training plan

I love training schedules. I love seeing what I need to do each day and then feeling smug as I tick it off and even smugger when I tick off lots of days in a row. Then I feel like a slacker when, after a few weeks, I look at my schedule and there are lots of ticks missing.

Today I realised the London Duathlon isn’t, in fact, months away, but only six weeks away. SIX WEEKS? AAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHH.

Yeah. Six weeks. Oh dear.

So, I got me a schedule. Here it is.


It’s an eight week schedule so I’ve crossed off the first two weeks and have told myself that I’ll diligently follow it for the next six weeks. That Monday tick was from today (Tuesday) and I’ll do Tuesday’s bike and strength training tomorrow (Wednesday), then the rest of the week will be as set, except all the Sunday things will be on Fridays as Sundays are traditionally reserved for hangovers. And in a couple of weeks when there are Friday things and Sundays can’t become Fridays, Friday will become Thursday and Saturday will become Friday and Sunday will become Saturday.

Or something like that.

Wish me luck!