AM I DOING ENOUGH?
I am looking at the calendar and I cannot believe that in 3 weeks I will be getting on my bike in pursuit of my cycle all the way to London. This past week has been pretty overwhelming for me. I have been sinking deep into all the fears and finding it hard to keep my motivation up. Am I doing enough? Am I trying to bite more than I can chew again?
I have only just told my mum about this challenge because I was worried that she will tap into my fears and it will crush me. In the end, I manage that one the same way I always do. I announce it to her after most of the important things are sorted, which means that I have answers to most of the questions. With my excited attitude towards the challenge, she has no other option than to accept my newest crazy idea and support me. Over the years, I have learned to give myself time to work through the technicalities of my goals first, to feel confident. Then I tell my mum so she does not have to worry. She raised me and my sister on her own and she will not sleep worrying about every little thing. This way I can protect her a little bit but still pursue my dreams.
THE DUMBEST OF THE DUMB
I have been on plenty adventures in my life but I have never done a challenge like this one before. Therefore I have never needed to go deeper into what I need to do and eat so my body is able to make it all the way to the finish line.
Various recommendations and tips I have from experienced cyclists is really helping me get started. Most of the things are common sense but many times, I just do not understand why I need to do certain things. So I google the questions straight even though I might seem like the dumbest of the dumb. Here’s some of the questions I have been researching. Whether it will just make you laugh or make you realise that we all have to start somewhere, the important thing is that you are making the effort to learn.
Why do I need to eat a lot of carbs?
Why do I need a quick boost of energy if I eat food that slowly releases energy?
Why do I need chamois creme?
Easy recipes for overnight oats when on the road.
One thing that is new to me as well is portions. I have spent the last few months trying to figure out what works for me so I get enough of food to fuel my body but never feel too full and unwell after my meals. It helps me maintain my Crohn’s disease. But, the increased amount of exercise is making me completely change this. After my 50 miles cycle last week I found myself absolutely starving the next day and that made me realise that I need to eat more and focus what I eat before and after. Again, this might seem completely dumb to someone but as an active person normally, I have never needed to do this.
I am a very shy person (at first) and I do not like asking people for things or favours too much. It always feels like cheating. Although, I have been pushing myself to put myself out there more and more and it is proving worth it every single time. I always ask with having something to offer in return though.
There are a few things I need for my trip so I contacted people to ask for support.
KOMOOT has supported me with the full package for their navigation app. I have only heard the best about Komoot and got it recommended from several people. I will now be testing it on my training cycle rides to get used to it. I will keep you updated with what I like and do not like (if there is anything) about this app.
I will be travelling with my little rucksack. To take some of the weight of my back for the ride, I thought I could do with a couple of little bags to put on my bike for tools and snacks. Fellow Aviemore adventurer Andy, who calls himself Backcountry Scot, apart from offering outdoor courses, owns a little shop where he sells new and consignment outdoor equipment. He supports local adventurers with lending equipment too. I spoke to him and he will kindly lend me some bags for my ride. Since I heard about him the first time, I liked his attitude and appreciate the support he is putting into everything he does. He is a great example for all of us and the direction the whole outdoor industry is going in.
Here is his website, check him out.
The Aviemore area is a great place for cycling, whether it is road cycling our mountain biking. I have asked the local bike shop to service my bike for the journey in exchange for supporting their great service. David from Bothy bikes has kindly offered to service my bike. If you ever find yourself in this area, make sure you pop in to say hi and you will be for sure well looked after.
Even though this past week has been more a theme of fears than excitement, I am enjoying the experience of going through all the feelings. It would not be a challenge if it was easy. Come and comment with things you have learned from your trips or things you are interested to know.
If you want to keep up with my everyday training and adventures, say hi on Instagram or Facebook @makeityouradventure. Have you missed any of the previous posts ‘How an idea becomes a plan’, ‘Personal Challenge not a Race’ or ‘Pushing through the Doubts’.