real life cycling

Not My New Year’s Resolutions

My theory on New Year’s resolutions has always been…if you need to wait for an arbitrary point in time to give you the impetus and motivation to do something (or stop doing something) then you don’t really want to do it (or stop doing it…if you see what I mean) – but hey, maybe that’s just my uber-rational side sucking the fun out of things!

I don’t know much about the business of running a gym, but I’d be interested to find out exactly how much of their income is a result of over ambitious and unfit types who, based on nothing more than a flimsy guilt driven whim, use a notable day from the calendar as the point from which they are going to start donating a chunk of their hard earned cash each month. No wonder Duncan Bannatyne looks so pleased with himself and so scornful of the general public in equal measure…the business plan must write itself.

Thirty pounds a month is about the going rate for the privilege of spending the first three weeks of the year telling everyone you’ve joined the gym, and then the next forty-nine weeks of that twelve month contract changing the subject whenever it comes up. Perhaps the sensible resolution to make might be to resolve to JOIN the gym…but not necessarily GO to the gym. The devil is in the detail, as they say.

The Dreaded Gym - go on, get your moneys worth! (Photo: Snehalkanodia - Wikimedia Creative Commons)
The Dreaded Gym – go on, get your moneys worth!
(Photo: Snehalkanodia – Wikimedia Creative Commons)

Anyway, as I’ve now set my stall out as an unsympathetic master of willpower (quiet at the back…no laughing!) it would be a tactical error for me to go ahead and list a number of resolutions which I’m liable to break unthinkingly before the end of the Rugby Union Six Nations Championships (the official start of Spring, if I’m not mistaken).

So in that vein, here are two New Year’s resolutions that I am definitely NOT making, and the corresponding truths that will act as the guidelines to my behaviour this year (they are just guidelines, nothing is set in stone here, I cannot stress this enough!)

1. To ride quicker this year than last.

Truth – to not be too much slower than last year (admittedly, I pinched this one from @Doctor_Hutch, and it’s fair to say that his ‘not too much slower’ will be a fair bit quicker than my ‘not too much slower’). I am past my athletic peak and I have kids – how many excuses does one man need?

2. To refine my diet and cut out all those foods which are not conducive to being a lean and quick cyclist – or as I like to call them, the three P’s – pies, pastries and pizza.

Truth – I will limit myself to a maximum of four pies per week (I am a Lancashire lad after all), replace all dietary pain-au-chocolat with croissants, and eat only my own pizza (and not half of my wife’s too).

3. I will clean and maintain my bike after each ride to keep it running smoothly and efficiently, and looking quick.

Truth – I will chuck a bucket of water over it once a week, spray it with GT85, and if there’s a tea-towel handy I might give it a quick rub down.

(Photo: Public Domain)
(Photo: Public Domain)

I will not be giving monthly updates on how well I am adhering to these strict and draconian lifestyle guidelines throughout 2014, but you can see from how hard I will be pushing myself that I mean business – rest assured I will be trying my hardest to maintain this monk-like lifestyle.

Of course, if I were the type to cut corners (which I’m not, perish the thought) there is a certain amount of wiggle room here…more flat rides equals quicker riding…hmm, interesting…the pie restriction is a tough one, but what about pasties or sausage rolls..? No mention of drink here so wine and beer can stay…

…is it possible to juice a pizza?

Happy New Year folks…and roll on 2014.

4 comments on “Not My New Year’s Resolutions

  1. When I used to frequent the gym on a regular basis I used to hate the first 3 weeks of each year. So busy. But 3 weeks seemed to be as long as most new year’s gym resolutions lasted! December was my favourite month. We had the place to ourselves


  2. My policy is to eat and drink what I like (life’s too short!) and cycle harder. If and when I get slower, this may change, like you I’ve passed my peak and time is limited. Don’t think I’ll be setting goals this year. I want to enjoy my riding a little more, do a few tours perhaps. That said, goals are a great motivator, here’s some examples of cycling goals to set in 2014:


  3. Pingback: Is it time to give up cycling? | ragtime cyclist

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