Week 31 -Prior to Departure

In which I Cycle 288k, Run 23k and Swim 2.6k

I’m gathering my energy and my thoughts in preparation for setting off to Penzance as I write this, and tomorrow I should begin the long ride from Land’s End to John O’Groats with my friend Paul. I’m still fussing over my packing list – do I really need another t-shirt? is this book too heavy? will it rain? will I need any first-aid materials? Those questions are never really anwered – I just run out of time to change my decisions. I’m going for minimalist, super-lightweight packing – I’m up to around 7kilos including panniers. The tent is a whopping 1.6 kilos, my sleeping bag only 650 grams, books and maps weigh 450 grams………In the end, for all my fussing, it becomes rather academic since I will probably have litres of water and several  kilos of food at any one time once underway. It’s more for morale – toiling up a steep hill I will curse those unnecessary luxuries that seemed so inviting when I was sitting at home. But, enough! I have a train to catch. Normal blogging will be resumed in 3 weeks’ time (hopefully).

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Trick-cycling lane or bumpy surface?

Diary

Thursday 30th July. A lazy, lazy day listening to cricket, reading, tidying my room and planning my holiday – only two-and-a-half hours of cycling (44k) all day.

Friday. Awoke at 5am to a cloudless dawn. Knowing that sleep would not beckon again, acted like a lunatic and went for a 4k run – startling the neighbourhood cats and momentarily being taken back fifty years by the rattling of a distant milk-float. Then to the pool for 2.6k of swimming followed by 44k of cycling and an afternoon in the garden listening to England beat the Aussies.

Saturday. Finsbury Parkrun. Another fast time. I don’t know what’s happening – maybe all the cycling is having a cross-over effect. I felt tired by the end, but not as exhausted as two weeks ago when I ran 2 seconds faster. parkrun17 Cycled to Waterloo in the afternoon and took the train to visit my dad in Morden. He was reading a book on the English Civil War – even at 88 he’s still keen on expanding his knowledge. I hope I’ll be like that if I make it to that age. Only logged 38k of cycling for the day.

Sunday. 6.30am on a summer’s morning – the perfect time for a 3k run to take me past the 700k mark (70%) :). Clear pavements, few cars and a healthy appetite for breakfast afterwards. Most of the day was taken up by a group walk along the canal from Paddington to Islington, but riding to and back from Paddington with a few loops of Regent’s Park thrown in got me 42k for the day.

Monday. Cycle-and-run morning in the park – 24k and 6k respectively. My running target is now down to less than 2k per day.

Tuesday. More-or-less a rest-day with lots of household tasks and chores in preparation for going away – just 41k cycled, much of it in busying around getting ready.

Wednesday. A 5k run around the Parkrun course – at an easy pace and untimed. 35k on the bike.

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