On your bike mate
1 – Giant Propel Advanced 2 – £2000 – 3000
Lucky enough to get a huge discount on this bike I have now had my hands on this bike for over 2 years now and it has been an absolute dream. I love cycling but I am by no means a techy rider and understand all the ins and outs of a bike. But what I can tell you that this bike is an absolute dream to ride, I have progressed from having a £100 bike then slowly upgrading bikes until I ended up here.
The bike is built for speed with the frame and all the components geared for FAST FAST FAST! With a combination of a TT bike and road bike this bike gives you the comfort that you require from a road bike and the performance of a TT bike. Extensive wind tunnel testing has been used on the frames shape and angles using a process called Aerosystem shaping technology – basically meaning this bike has been left with no stone unturned, delivering a stiff, light and responsive ride quality. Along with the frame, aero rims are bolted on and brake calipers are tucked neatly away behind the front fork to stop any unnecessary drag.
That’s my nerd off done with, from a personal opinion it is one of the most magical bikes I have ever ridden and I have had the chance to ride quite a few delicious bikes! The power that can be pushed through the pedals makes it feel like a real monster, but then delicate and light enough to be nimble on sharp descents. I have ridden short fast races on the bike and have done 250+ miles on the bike and I have had no issues (maybe one but that’s not the bikes fault – n.b saddle)
They always say that you should invest in a decent frame then just keep upgrading components as wear and tear takes hold or your riding style changes. I for one will be riding this beast into the ground as it has been such a great bike and delivered on so many levels. A glowing review sounding like it was coming from a Giant sales person!
2 – Specialized stealth carbon saddle – £110
You can spend all the money on a bike and the right kit so you look like a pro but the one piece of kit I recommended investing in is a decent saddle and trust me this comes from experience.
Looking back at 2016 what a year! A handful of ultra marathons and triathlons built me up to a double Ironman 220+ miles on the bike and we can safely say that I had broken my johnson. 6 months down the line, a handful of visits to the urologist, a healthy dosage of Viagra and I was still recovering from severe nerve damage to the old boy. There was very minimal research on the matter, but one article pointed towards the compression of the perineum which in turn gives you erectile dysfunction.
This may have been due to me be tired and not being able to hold the correct position. But I know what the cure was and it was this dreamy saddle. With a cut away section to relieve any pressure from the perineum and making the ride super comfortable, you can all sigh a big breath of relief with me as I have had no problems in the baby maker ever since.
My word of warning is to take care of yourself, make sure that you find a saddle that fits your riding style and your posture of riding. It is something that will always be slightly uncomfortable after being on a bike for 20+ hours but we can make it slightly better by buying a decent saddle.
3 – Giro Savant – £60-80
Another piece of kit worth investing in unless your one of those shaggy haired hipster idiots in London who don’t want to mess up their hair with a life saving helmet but are happy to wear a club floppy hat!
Come on people wear a helmet, you can be sexy once you get off the bike. The amount of accidents that happen when on the road it is just common sense to give yourself every chance to not be brain dead.
I have had a few nasty crashes on the bike and have had a few heavy whacks to the head but have been ok only for the fact that I have worn a helmet. There is so many shapes, styles and colours to choose from you have no real excuse. I have had a few helmets over the years and have always gone with the Giro range, most recently the Savant.
They are affordable, comfy, light and look pretty cool whether you are racing or cycling through town. With the Giro’s innovative Roc Loc 5 system which delivers adjustable sizes for a totally unique and unmatched level of comfort you are winning all year round.
4 – Fizik r3b uomo– £160-220
If you are skilled at cycling then you can in theory only have tow points of contact your feet and your ass! The saddle is covered, so lets have a look at the shoes.
Again I am not a complete geek with weight and style but these shoes are both! They are super light, super comfortable and have some serious power transfer ability.
With a UD Carbon Fibre sole they are sturdy and lightweight but flexible enough to ensure comfort for the foot and a direct transfer of power to the pedals.
Not much more needs to be said about these shoes but a great buy, take it up a notch and get the sole moulded to your foot for a personalised comfort finish.
I ride with these shoes barefoot and I have never had any dramas with foot sores even when riding over 200+ miles!
5 – Cateye Volt 700 – £18
Safety first kids! There is something quite brilliant about cycling late at night not many people about and you really get to enjoy the roads. Having cycled around England with a good friend we ended up doing quite a lot of early morning and late night cycling. We both invested in these Cateye Volt 700 front lights that lit the road up and made the rides really enjoyable.
The 700 stands for the amount of Lumen this lights pumps out. It has 5 modes Dynamic, Normal, All-Night, Hyper-Constant and Flashing. So you are covered for everything, I tend to drop in and out of all of the modes depending on what condition I am in. The battery is interchangeable so you can have a back if you are doing longer rides or multi day events. With a USB charging dock you can take a power bank with you and charge on the go.
Having a piece of kit that you can rely on is super important when heading out into the night and these lights do just that.
Overall – 10/10