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Having seen, first-hand, the consequences of post-traumatic stress disorder and depression suffered by former servicemen and women, I am taking on the London to Paris Bike Ride to raise vital funds for life-changing mental health treatment for our veterans.
Combat Stress is the UK's leading charity for veterans' mental health. For over a century, they've helped former servicemen and women deal with issues like trauma, anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Today, they provide support to veterans from every service and every conflict.
I’m taking on vital steps towards ensuring veterans can get the support they need.
Thank you so much for your support.
Day 0 - waiting for the morning…Tuesday 31st May
Not sure if it is excitement or trepidation, but I woke this morning around 5:30am, wondering if I had packed everything. I suppose I will find out tomorrow! I have the most important things - bike (all clean and shiny!), helmet, shoes and padded cycling bibs.
Everything loaded into the car and my lovely man drove me down to the hotel I start from tomorrow morning. I did check twice I had my passport and he ran through what I should have. A little late as we were on the M25! 😂
At the hotel, I realised I had made a schoolgirl error and not loaded the 3 maps of France I needed, on to my bike computer. It would be fine with the Hilton Wi-Fi. Wrong! With the gateway, the Wi-Fi wasn’t stable enough. I am close to throwing the computer out of the window. Turns out the latest firmware up date makes it almost impossible to download the maps without being connected to a computer 😖 At least the route will show and I am not cycling alone.
On the positive side, the total raised as of this evening is £3101. Still another £399 to reach my goal of £3500. So if you are reading this and have not yet had a chance to support me, please use the link below. Every pound is most welcome.
So, it is an early night as it is an early start tomorrow morning, with 85 miles to Dover for the ferry.Share
Off to a flying start, with Covid!Saturday 14th May
London to Paris - weeks 1 to 4, w/c 11 Apr and 7 weeks to go.
Sometimes there is a moment when you think it is a great idea to do something, than sometime later you think is a really stupid idea.
So there I was, Day 1, having had great idea and signed up to ride London to Paris, in seven and half weeks time, for Combat Stress with a target of £2500 to raise in sponsorship.
Then I needed a training plan, especially as all my form from last year has disappeared with the lack of winter cycling and start fundraising.
First official training ride was with the Zwift - Pack. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Pack, Pack are a brilliant online community of cyclists, who are hugely supportive and encouraging for anyone who wants to cycle. And it seemed appropriate that the first ride was in virtual London.
Fundraising page was set up and published, it was fabulous to see the generous nature of people for a great cause. By the end of the first day, the total was standing at just under £1500. On Day 2, I had had a message and I was taken aback and honoured that a friend had shared their story about how Combat Stress has helped them. This reaffirmed to me the great work Combat Stress gives our veterans from all the services.
As for the training, I was off to a fine start, as I had woken up with a full on head cold, so no cardio for me, just some weights.
By Day 3, the good news was your generous donations were coming in from across world and I was half way to the target amount. The bad news, I tested positive for Covid. So, no cardio for at least a couple of days.
Easter weekend and all the plans for 3 successive days of half day rides are out the window. The covid appears to have gone to my chest and I am coughing away. Otherwise, I feel ok. So the training is restricted to weights and strength training. This was supplemented with some gardening although the future husband said it didn’t count!😂
The generosity of people has been amazing and this morning, with encouragement from a lovely friend, increased my fundraising target to £3500.
The coughing and wheezing continued for the week and no cardio, which meant no cycling. I tested negative on Thursday 21 April, 10 days into the training and 6 weeks to go. But all my training had to be zone 2. This should be great for the endurance training but not quite what I had hoped for. At least I am in the gym! Nothing like adding to the challenge, with just over 5 weeks to go and I was thinking I’d be back on the bike the following week. I got one ride in before the coughing and congestion started. So we are 3 weeks down the road and the training is not going as planned with the continuing post covid congestion but I am hopeful starting again this week.Share
Thank you to my Sponsors
Bruce & Lou
Geoff Beattie & Kb