My Interest Lies In Cycle Paths, Not Psychopaths

For those of you who aren’t so keen on my writing-related posts, you’ll be pleased to know this is on a different topic, and instead of holding forth with my usual arrogance and self-confidence, I’m asking a couple of questions‚Ķ

Regular (that is, ‘long-suffering’) readers – or those of you who’ve read my profile – may recall that I like to do a bit of running, but this year I’m looking to add to that, whilst simultaneously diminishing my waistline, by having a go at a Duathlon. I know a Triathlon’s the more famous event (and it seems the London Triathlon is pretty famous internationally), but until I’ve done something about the measurement around my equator, I don’t think that humanity should be subject to the sight of me in a wetsuit. So, it’s running plus cycling in 2009.

It’s the addition of cycling which is the unknown and uncertain area for me, though, as I haven’t been the owner of a bike for at least a decade, and I’m pretty certain that technology will have advanced quite a bit bike-wise in that period. So, if any of you can advise me on the type or model I should be looking into, I’d be really grateful. Whatever model I buy needs to be as light as possible, but also sturdy, as the duathlon involves run-cycle-run, and so the bike’ll be chucked about a fair bit (especially when I dump it and get back to the second bout of running). And if I can use it for everyday, non-sport purposes, that’d be good too (though I have some sizable reservations about cycling in London, as you might imagine).

Anyway, if you can recommend a suitable model or a firm who might be able to help me sort myself out with some wheels, I’d appreciate it – and if any of you have done a Triathlon or Duathlon and want to try to dissuade me from doing one, or to give advice on how to do so and not end up knackered or dead*, please leave a comment or e-mail me at twowheelsgood[at]

Oop, almost forgot – in terms of size and cost, I need something that’ll be all right for my moderately lengthy legs (about 35″), and which costs less than ¬£fourdigits – and it has to be available in black.

Any pointers gratefully received – thanks!

*If I wind up dead as a result of some silly physicality such as a duathlon or climbing a mountain, I think it’s fair to say, m’wife will kill me.


BBC Writersroom – Coming To A Town Near Me!


In Which I Try To Justify My Nerdish Level Of Knowledge About One Topic By Pretending I’m Really Talking A Broader Issue


  1. Am tempted to make a comment on your leg length, but shall be good and refrain.

    Good luck with it, I admire anyone who does physical exercise voluntarily.

  2. Thanks Andrew – it is excessive, I agree. Freakish DNA, I guess…

  3. Get one with a big wheel at the front and a tiny one at the back. You won’t win but you might get on the telly.

  4. Wasn’t thinking freakish, was more wondering if they make cycling and running easier or harder?

    Go for the big wheel, little wheel bike. Always good to be on telly, unless its Crimewatch…

  5. A penny farthing would look great, but can you imagine the attempts to mount / dismount between the events? I’d end up on my arse.

    The legs don’t seem to be a hindrance or advantage with the running really Andrew, though I suppose it means I can cover a longer distance with fewer strides; hard to feel that benefit when I’m carrying several kilos of chips and chocolate around the middle, mind!


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