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Monday, December 20

To bike or not to bike
I couldn't get out of bed this morning. I just couldn't move. I was very cold and I didn't want to get out of the luke-warm nest I'd managed to create within my bedroom. I had no energy whatsoever. Eventually, I swung myself out of bed and started to calculate how long I had to get showered and get out of the house. Would I be able to take the bike? It's quite important, if I'm to be a regular 10 mile a day cyclist as of Thursday of this week, that I do as much cycling as possible to build up the strength, stamina etc etc.

Well, it was split second timing all round. The postman (who was frustrated by my sometimes-self-locking-letterbox) lost me a minute, but I used that minute to pick up one of my freshly-ironed shirts from the kitchen. I hit the street with the bike and pedalled for all I'm worth. At the moment, I'm not worth very much, but I was worth enough to get myself from home to work in about the time it takes by car. Journey time - 13m 27s. Average speed 12.9mph. I'm very proud.

Now my legs are feeling quite tender and my saddle soreness could be a little easier. This is nowhere near as bad as it was a couple of weeks ago when I first took to the road on two wheels. This is partly down to a certain amount of tolerance in my muscles and arse (and arse muscles, no doubt) and also partly down to the fact that the new bike - the Trek 3500 - is a more comfortable ride. Going home will be harder. If I'm feeling really ambitious, maybe I'll tackle a few hills. Aaaagh!

Live life to the Max
I used to live on a diet of Pepsi Max. I could go through 6 cans in one day at work without even noticing it. A year ago, I had a nasty stomach complaint - possibly an ulcer or general dysfunction. Who knows!? Anyway, during the illness I found the taste of Pepsi Max to be rather metallic. In short, I went off it. I returned to Diet Coke, which I'd previous ditched for the aforementioned Pepsi.

I've been drinking the Diet Coke for the last year and I don't recall touching Pepsi Max since... until Saturday. While I was waiting for the bike shop to prepare the bike for me, I went for a wander around South Gosforth. I thought I'd warm my legs up with a walk before I got home and started the cycling. I bought a bottle of diet soda from a newsagent on my travels and, tempted by its special offer, opted for Pepsi Max. It didn't have a metallic taste that made me feel sick. It also didn't have a memorable taste that made me want anymore. I have no desire to have any more of the stuff.

I suppose that these chemical-laden drinks are all as bad as each other. I should be drinking water or fruit juice (though some of that which calls itself fruit juice is just battery acid by another name). Here's me campaigning to have the coke machine sell more diet coke, because I want to pump two or three quid into it every day to rot my gut and make Mr Coca Cola richer. Maybe I should be campaigning to have the thing removed from the office and replaced with a water cooler. Or a tap.

As an aside, on the first week or so after the machine was converted to sell more Diet Coke than Coke (oh yeah - victory) it ran out of Coke and had no red lights on the Diet Coke. Perhaps the guy over did the conversion (he replaced two of the Cokes with Diet Coke, I would have just done one), or perhaps the Coke drinkers did some panic buying. We'll never know. Panic buying of Coke sounds like the sort of pointless thing that today's people might do if they thought there was a war coming along or something. "Have you got the Coke dear?" "Yes, thank god." "What about canned foods and long-life milk?" "Ah... right... never mind."

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