What bikes do you ride, what is your dream ride?
I currently ride a WyndyMilla Massive Attack Disc – it’s a custom build from the company down in Surrey, designed around my own needs as a long distance racer – it’s got a slightly relaxed geometry and disc brakes with Shimano’s Di2. I was lucky enough to be able to paint the frame myself so it really means a great deal to me when I look down at the colours – truly it’s a bike to make you smile!
Ambitions for 2017
Race hard! I want to cross at least one continent by bike, and really inspire others to do challenges on bikes! The bucket list gets ticked off, but never shrinks!
Biggest personal achievement cycling
I started riding in November of 2011 and in May of 2012 I rode LeJogLe (lands-end to john o’groats and back to lands-end) in 10 days, a total of 1800 miles. It was an enormous challenge for me as I’d not ridden for over 15 years, however a solid winter of preparation really helped to get me ready.
Something most people don’t know about you
I broke a rib during LeJogLe up near Glasgow, then rode down to Lands-end over the next 2 days unable to pull my socks up or hold a spoon to eat!
Biggest cycling adventure
Either the 2015 Transcontinental Race, or riding across Holland and Belgium this last summer with my 10 year old son – both big adventures but in very different ways.
Worst cycling experience
That’s a toss-up between crashing, breaking both a collarbone and rib or getting hypothermia on a winter ride in the Peak District – I was too trusting in the marketing gumpf of the manufacturer and the waterproof jacket I was wearing turned out to be not up to it!
Last time cycling took you outside of your comfort zone
Probably the last time I set my alarm for 5am, when it’s cold and dark outside sometimes it’s a challenge just to crawl out of a warm bed! Opening the door to the elements can be the hardest part of the ride!
Developing focus on the indoor trainer is one of the areas I struggle with, I use a Wahoo Kickr (which I love!), and just keeping the numbers in a tight range is a real struggle after a while, that internal pressure really keeps me on my toes!
Toughest ride to date
As a newbie to adventure racing I tried to ride from Rotterdam to Riga (in Latvia) without my wife finding out – she was in Latvia on holiday. I was spectacularly under-prepared and lost battery power within 24 hours – so was navigating Germany and Poland by paper and moonlight! It was a heck of a learning experience and I got about 1000 miles when Anda realised what I was up to…..
What keeps you motivated?
Knowing just how lucky I am! It’s a big world out there, and being able to race and ride it, documenting the travels as I go puts me in a enormously privileged position – so I want to make sure others get to enjoy it as well.
Favourite post-ride treat
My North Face Down Mule slippers – the perfect way to reheat toes without getting pins and needles!
When the weather is bad, do you brave the rain or stick to the turbo?
Rule 9 innit! I’m happy to ride in all weather conditions, and rain doesn’t bother me at all. I’m not a fan of dangerous winds, but rain is fun 😉
Biggest cycling kit indulgence
Probably winter jackets as they are so darned important. Actually it’s caps, you can never have too many caps. Now that I think about it, it might well be merino socks – the feet need love too! Possibly bar-tape – it’s got to be PRO! But I do love a fast looking pair of shoes……
Favourite destination for cycling
Honestly couldn’t say! I’ve been hella lucky to ride all over the UK, Europe, and as far afield as Taiwan – there’s just so much beauty out there! It would be easier to give you 25 names than it would be to give you just one!!
Favourite way to pass the time when you aren’t on the bike
Probably dreaming up ways of getting into scrapes and adventures on bikes!
You can read Martin’s blog at themartincox.co.uk