Sunday, August 7, 2016

The Road To Reno!!

Week 1 of this initial conditioning phase has resulted in my riding a total of 115 miles. My resting heart rate is 45 bpm and my body weight is 63 kgs. Next week will involve my first 100+ mile ride to establish how I deal with the increased mileage and how quickly I recover? This will give me a good insight into my current fitness level ready for my initial phase 1 test on the 1st September. This conditioning phase will last for 4 weeks and will prepare me for phase 1 that will last for 12 weeks!!

Thursday, August 4, 2016

AdventureCORPS, Inc. will host the 33rd Anniversary of Silver State 508, on September 17-19 (Saturday-Monday), 2016. Founded by John Marino in 1983 and recognized as "The Toughest 48 hours in Sport," it is the world's premier 48-hour ultra cycling race. This 508-mile bicycle race, commonly known as "The 508," is revered the world over for its epic mountain climbs, stark desert scenery, desolate roads, and its reputation as one of the toughest but most gratifying endurance challenges available, bar none. Solo, two-person relay, and four-person relay divisions are offered, including a Self-supported Solo Randonneur Division (no support crew allowed)! Formerly known as Furnace Creek 508, Silver State 508 is a Race Across AMerica (RAAM) Qualifier.

On September 1st 2016 I will officially start a 365 day training programme in preparation for riding the Silverstate 508 2017 race as a SOLO rider in the Randonneur Division!! During August I will be laying the foundations in preparation for a year of total commitment to achieving my aim. Another dream race and another brutal and lonely journey pushing limits of human endurance. Testing boundaries and proving that with self-belief, self motivation and dedication that:


Follow my training here where you can pick up tips and advice during this brutal solo journey of endeavour. There are "NO LIMITS"

"Be Inspired"

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The Journey To Gibraltar "ROCKRIDE 2" - Follow The Story!!

In 2010 a band of merry fellows rode 1500 miles from The Rock Of Gibraltar to Buckingham, UK in what was a memorable multi-charity fundraising ride through Europe. It was a resounding success!! In the first 2 weeks of June 2014 20 hardy cycling warriors will take to the road again in their individual quest to smash this challenging route and to raise vast amounts of money for their respective charities.

My job as "Ride Leader" is to train and prepare all the riders for what lies ahead. This will include structured and progressive training programmes and specialist nutritional advice. Follow their training and preparation here!!! 12 months of training has begun!!!!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Just Crazy!!


I have always admitted that being on the bike turns me into a different person! If you want a war you will get one and this was no different, at times I was out of control. I became totally consumed and obsessed by what Kale was doing. 18 hour rides, I tried in vain to sleep but I lay awake listening to see if Kale was moving. It was hopeless I just couldn’t relax!!!

I had amassed a 100km (62 Mile) lead while Kale continued to swim. I was happy I wasn’t the one chasing. We would both sneak out while the other was sleeping it became crazy. My first meltdown occurred as I woke from a short sleep, Pete was worried about me and I looked terrible. I couldn’t operate my brain, Pete was asking me questions I just couldn’t answer. Deca had started in earnest. I was a lost soul, no sleep, long days in the saddle, I was shot and Pete asked me to make a decision! “Ride on” or “Sleep”. A quick snack and I chose to ride on! It took me an age to reach a final decision but it was the right decision. “Beyond Exhaustion” I was there and it felt scary!!

I cried on the bike, the rash in my groin was so painful at one point I rode for 15 hours out of the saddle, I thought about how I would possibly run. Every time I stopped for a break getting back into the saddle was pure hell! It reduced me to tears………We rode for days on little or no sleep and it just got worse. We attacked each other constantly, it was relentless, tearing round the circuit! Common sense and good advice from fellow athletes fell on deaf ears, this was a raging battle!!

Pete would stand on the track side waving his arms pleading with me to ease up, it was no use I had the bit between my teeth Kale had applied the pressure again and I simply wouldn’t let it go. I just don’t know where it came from. I latched onto Kari Martin, arguably one of the best ultra-athletes in the world. We smashed the course, lap after lap at high speed like a steam train, it was the middle of the night and I was loving it! I was doing what I loved most and I had a new phrase “Lets Smoke It”.

At one point Kale came alongside me in tears and said “Why are we doing this to each other”? “This is just crazy man”. We both cried, we both laughed, we couldn’t answer the question! It wasn’t too long before one of us ripped into the other, testing, probing, simply looking for a weakness!!

I lost count of the number of times I approached Pete and said “Sorry”!! The plan worked as we entered the last day in the saddle. I left Pete in bed asleep as I sneaked out. I was on the circuit alone building up the gap. I texted Pete from the canteen to tell him we were still 100km ahead. The final day was 300km (185 miles) and that evening I would start the run!!! Despite the unbelievable pain and suffering I adore the bike. Sudocrem was my saviour along with a gel saddle kindly donated by Suraya. My crutch was absolutely destroyed, at times the pain was unbearable!!

Phase 2 was over and I didn’t think the suffering could get any worse? It did………………..far worse!!

Phase 1 - Swim Long Swim Steady!!



24 Miles in a 50 metre Olympic pool sounds a long haul, 21 miles will get you over to France from dear old blighty so you can imagine what the swim phase of Deca was like? Or can you? 760 lengths is hard to prepare for mentally but to be honest it went like a dream!

Having trained in Cambridge outdoor Lido and Abbeycroft Leisure Centre I simply practiced length after length in a wet suit. Boring but necessary!! On the plus side the water temperature in Bury was 29/30 degrees, in Monterrey outdoor pool it was 24-26 degrees so I was confident I wouldn’t overheat. The water temperature was perfect!! I was happy………………..

As we entered the water I had practiced and practiced the first 2 hours, I had focused on a smooth steady stroke rhythm in training. After a few lengths I realised that my pace was slightly quicker than the other athletes so my confidence grew quickly. Breaks for food and drink were kept short and sharp. As the blazing sun rose in the Monterrey sky it was blinding, I had to close my eyes as I breathed and open them to look at the bottom of the pool. I focused on the central yellow line of the lane. I was feeling good, strong and confident, my training and preparation had been spot on.

As day turned to night my ritual of stopping every 30 minutes to feed changed to counting 10 lengths as I struggled to concentrate, it worked perfectly, fatigue in the shoulders was making it difficult to lift my arms out of the water and I had strayed into the lane ropes a couple of times!!

 I had planned on 18 hours but as I slowed I exited the water in 19 hours 37 minutes, we had got it right!! I had created an early gap so we decided to sleep for a couple of hours before going to work on the bike! I had been swimming since 8am and it was now 3.37am the following day! A top tip on the swim received from the race director was to smother your hands and feet in sudocrem to prevent them from softening too much and the skin splitting, causing problems on the bike. Something I neglected on the swim was applying sun screen to my face, as a result I was quite badly burnt on my left cheek and ear. Lesson learnt!!

Phase 1 complete now it was time for the bike! The majority of my training was focused around the bike so let’s go to war! I simply thrive on being in the saddle, it brings me to life!!! Me and Pete made a plan now it was time to put it into place…………………..

Phase 2 tomorrow! How I suffered on the bike. It was relentless………….1800 laps in searing heat!!

The warm up was over so now it was down to business……………………


Saturday, November 10, 2012

Decatriathlon - The Athletes Story!!



Firstly, and most importantly I must say that my best mate and wing man, Pete Golding has done an incredible job with both facebook and the blog! He banned me from electronic communication so I was blissfully unaware of the interest that the race had generated! Simply superb!!

Now that the race is over I am going to tell you how it was from the athletes perspective, the highs, the lows and the agony. The laughter, the many tears and just what sleep deprivation does to you! If your thinking of doing Deca, get ready for WAR!!! Not only with the race but also with yourself. I had a race plan before we departed and it changed on a daily basis. The only thing that didn’t change was the lack of sleep. It certainly does make the mind do some funny things!!

Kale Poland gets my upmost respect, we had a titanic battle on the bike, it was at times crazy, exhilarating and painful! We simply smashed each other to pieces! Ever seen 2 grown men cry? I have and I am not ashamed to admit it! At times we were simply out of control!! I didn’t listen to Pete’s advice as I ripped round the course obsessed with speed.
 I want to tell the story before the memories start to fade! What exactly motivates someone to attempt Decatriathlon? What goes through your mind during the tough times? How do you cope with little or no sleep and then perform at a maximal level! Some things we do are just unbelievable and I can honestly say one thing! We are capable of things, extraordinary things, under pressure we go to levels I didn’t even know existed. “Beyond Exhaustion” is not a bad place to be at all! It is another world, a place where few people choose to enter, those who do will certainly never forget it!! Tomorrow, The Swim “Following The Yellow Line”…………………………………………………………….

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Together We Simply Smashed It!!! Destination DECA!!

It is now time for me to try and put into words just how I am feeling after this monumental race!

Firstly I could not possibly have raced or succeeded alone. Pete has been instrumental in our success out here in Mexico. His dedication, unselfish support and commitment have been priceless. To have a right hand man who will stand shoulder to shoulder with you in the heat of battle cannot be measured. Secondly, during the dark lonely times he fed me updates from supporters that reduced me to tears, people willing me forward from around the globe provided me with the pockets of inspiration that I needed! Do not underestimate what we together have achieved here!

The race was extremely painful, on the bike  Kale and I repeatedly attacked each other looking to break each other’s resolve. At one point we cycled side by side in tears asking why we were doing this to each other? It wouldn’t be long before it happened again! The run was a war of attrition. There was no time for self-pity, blistered and bleeding feet, swollen shins, they just had to be ignored! I have never suffered like I suffered during this foot race in temperatures around 100 degrees!

 I always felt that Decaman was my destiny, a race that I just had to do before I was the complete athlete. Before the race I didn’t have the answer to my reasons for wanting to complete such a tortuous race. Now I have all the answers. I sit here a World Champion at the end of an incredible journey of pain and suffering. I knew with the right combination I could win this race, Pete was the answer to that! I now realise that “Anything is Possible”!! If through Decaman I can inspire one person to train then my job is done!!!

To be crowned World Champion on your birthday is what dreams are made of! Some things you simply cannot script but this indeed has been a fairy tale ending!!

The final piece in the jig saw is firmly in place!! Together we have lived the dream!! I thank you for that!!

 Now I can rest!!