Since completing my LEJOGLE world record, I’ve been honoured to be asked to talk about it on a number of Podcasts. All the links are below if you want to take a listen. Although some aspects remain the same in each, they are all very unique, and you'll learn something different in each one.
When I first started cycle touring, I followed the traditional approach of bike rack and panniers, with a bungie or two to hold my tent on with. My bike would weigh a ton, but I could carry everything I was prepared to haul around with me. I remember taking on the first leg of my round Britain ride........ As a woman who rides a 'small' bike and has a tendency to faff, I struggled to find a bike-packing saddle pack that worked for me.....
As daylight came, there was a short break in the worst of the rain....or maybe there wasn't, I was so wet it was difficult to tell. but the terrain eased up a little. Despite yet more mud and bigger puddles, it was rideable, and so for a while I made better progress. I was several hours now behind plan, which meant that I reached the Reigate Hill picnic area after the cafe there had opened.
There is something both scary and exciting about doing something for the first time. The reality is that you never know if you can do something until you try. You can spend your time talking about things, or actually living them. I do a bit of both, but in recent years I’ve decided that life is just too short to waste it dreaming. The things that 10 years ago I said I could never do..... well I’ve given many of them a good shot, with varying degrees of success. With every challenge I set myself, I’ve learned new things about myself. I’ve learned that I can do crazy things. But, I’ve also learned that I have developed a remarkable mental toughness for adversity, and will to carry on, even when many others might quit. I’ve also learned that Type 2 fun does exist, and you mostly don’t realise you had fun until after.
It's a common feeling when you've been preparing for so long for something so big. The crash that comes after the event. It comes regardless of whether you were triumphant, or things didn't go to plan. The success of the event is just a volume button really to the emptiness that is invariably felt once the euphoria (or disappointment) wears off.