“Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle”

Hello everyone,

Sorry we haven’t done any post the last few days (Whoops good job I actually just checked what I had just typed, as had actually wrote “Sorry we haven’t done any pot the last few days”… that would make this a whole different type of blog!!) Anyway back to biking.

I assumed Dan would write a blog last night as on Monday he stunned both of us by really pushing himself further than he has gone before, but I won’t steal his thunder I will let him tell you all about it himself. But that is why last night was blog silent. So as you haven’t heard much from either of us recently I thought I would tell you about my accomplishments, which in fairness to myself is probably a good thing that I am telling you before Dan tells you what he has done as mine will seem slightly lame in comparison, but I promise I am pushing myself harder than I ever have.

I think this change in mindset has really helped me, as Dan commented on Monday he is not sure who I am or what I have done with the real Nikki, but I just pointed out that maybe I left the old Nikki behind in 2011 alone with all the bad things of the year and this is the new 2012 Nikki starting afresh! But to everyone’s surprise, not least my own, I have got up early every morning and been getting on my bike for 7.30 in the morning! Yes this really is me writing the blog and not some Nikki shaped imposter and you did read that right I am on my bike at 7.30AM BEFORE the sun has properly risen!!!! And not only that, there is more…. I have taken to wearing proper cycling clothes AND flat trainers (Currently even covered in mud). I would mention that I have also gone out numerous mornings without make-up on but that would just scare you all, so I will just keep that bit of information to myself…

Now for the bit that’s less impressive, I admit I am not going as far as I should be. At this stage with just over two months to go I should be aiming for at around 30 miles a day yet I am only doing a pitiful 20, but I am hoping over the next week to build that up. I am also finding that I am still really struggling, especially with hills, and I am not sure why I can not just seem to push through that pain barrier, as at the moment as soon as it starts to hurt I want to stop. Though admittedly I do better at carrying on if I am following someone, so maybe I won’t be too bad on the actual ride.  I keep hoping that this will start getting easier yet it doesn’t seem to be…. any suggestions for what I can be doing to make this easier would be muchly appreciated.

Yesterday I think I did my toughest ride yet… I rode up Pendle hill via Sabden! Now THAT hill did kill me. If you would like to see a rough version of my route (I say rough as google maps won’t let me plot the country foot paths I rode along) click this link here:

http://bit.ly/z3lvug

The main problem with yesterday, once I started up the hill to Sabden the weather decided it was done playing nice with me! At this stage I didn’t have the heart to turn back, so carry on I did… Though why I have no idea! The wind was blowing me all over the place, I was freezing, no longer able to feel my tiny little fingers. And of course there was that horrid rain, which as Peter Kay would say is “That fine stuff that soaks you  through” and soak me through it did. I looked like a drowned rat! There wasn’t an inch of me that was dry. Add to that all the mud that was splattered all over me, you could imagine just how good I looked! I may have to look into some kind of glasses or goggle things as with the rain splattering me face I found it really hard to see where I was going, which isn’t the safest thing on thin little roads with big trucks coming towards you!

Getting into a hot bath when I got home was actual heaven and has just strengthen my believe that no way in hell am I camping at all on the trip I will want a soft bed and hot water every night, so I have now doubled my efforts to get all our evening accommodation donated. If you, or someone you know, would like  put up two cyclist for a night, please get in touch! Please please please. Our Destinations are: 1. Newcastle-Under-Lyme   2. Solihull   3. Oxford   4. Basingstoke   5. Portsmouth (Though we are on the Ferry that night)   6. Vitré    7. Beaucouzé    8. Bressuire     Sounds so easy when I write it down, now I just have to get to those locations! The actually routes should be going up here soon, so even if someone wants to feed us as we are passing you it would be so greatly appreciated by us both!!

Well I feel like I have begged enough for one blog entry so I will shut up now. As for my amusing picture of the day, I am afraid it is not actually bike related (Big shocker I know) but its more a picture of how I felt when I got home on Tuesday soaked to the bone, and to all those people who said I will start to enjoy biking…….

How I felt on Tuesday!

Thank you to everyone who is supporting us with this, it is really helping to keep us both going. If you would like to donate, please go to http://www.virginmoneygiving.com/r2rchallenge  all the money raised in going to the NSPCC so it is a really good cause and well worth supporting! Thank you.

Nikki

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