There is a whiff of autumn in the air, there is also a chill in the air too. I don’t mind either of these things. In fact I quiet like this time of year – it’s sort of cosy somehow.

Anyway, in the past few weeks I have noticed that it’s not only the weather that has changed. It’s the state of my hands.

Now clearly my hands are in much closer proximity to the ground than most. Well in close proximity to my wheels. They are getting muddy!

I haven’t even noticed that the weather has been particularly bad nor that many leaves have fallen but I have noticed a kind of dark grime on my hands. I guess it’s just the wetness and dampness that comes with autumn.

Not only that but I have noticed that my hands are freezing. That chill in the air transfers handily to my aluminium wheel rims so my hands are basically at whatever temperature the air is.

So how do I deal with this? Gloves, right? Wrong! In my last column I wrote about how rain affects my grip and ability to brake and steer, the same is true of gloves. While they might protect from muck and cold, they are rarely waterproof and add a layer that slides and grips less well than skin.

Trust me I have tried the full gamut; cycling, powerlifting, sailing, the works. They all add a cumbersome layer and reduce my ability to grip.

There is also a more subtle element, I guess you would call psychological. When you first start using a wheelchair you have to wear gloves. Or else you would be blistered as well as all the other things you have to deal with in that early phase.

I may have spoken before about the spinal injury uniform – basically loose soft clothing aka a tracksuit and some cycling gloves. Those were dark times and putting on gloves just feels odd. I have photos of me wearing fingerless cycling gloves in high summer – it’s a bit bonkers.

So every time I see them or put them on I just want to take them off. I actively avoid wearing tracksuits too, which is a shame given the current trends for ‘athletic wear’ but maybe as I’m in my mid-30s, not mid-20s, I might have avoided a curveball there.

So stubborn says no gloves and no tracksuits. Unless anyone has any bright ideas that have evaded me in the past six years, I have my annual baby wipe fund in place, a bag in my backpack and a nice warm cup of tea at the end of most journeys.

I guess a lot of people pay for mud-based therapies and exfoliation. Maybe this could the secret to my millions?

“Do you want younger looking hands? Use a wheelchair in autumn without gloves.”

Hmmm. Maybe not.