Archive for March, 2014

30
Mar
14

jack of two trades

Longer evenings and a more temperate climate of late has meant that I could ramp up the training a little bit. The purchase of a new bike a few months back has also made me split my time between running and cycling.

Which means it would be sensible to split my planned events throughout the year into a combination of separate cycling and running events… So I have.

Last year, a cyclist friend and I found out too late about the Ellis 50 Miler so decided to schedule a long ride on the same day and aim to get to the Ellis 50 finish line as the main chunk of the field should begin to finish. Embarrassingly, a few bystanders mistook us for entrants and “clapped us home” as we were cycling towards the finish to cheer the real competitors home. There will be no such mistake this year as we got our entries in early and we can hopefully accept the spectators applause without guilt.

There is also the Dunwich Dynamo – one of my most favourite events – and Hauling My Carcass and I will once again tackle this overnight monster of a ride. Unusually, this year will be the first that either of us has had the luxury of a geared bike as all previous attempts have been on our single speeds. It will be interesting to see how the addition of gears alters the experience.

Running wise, I was disappointed to see that this year, my home race, the Hertford 10k isn’t being run. I love this race and was sniffing around for something else to do. My boss suggested that the next best thing to a home town race is a race local to your place of work so I have signed up for the Ealing Half Marathon at the end of September. I am hoping that the combination of a summer of running coupled with my cycling training will mean that I will get super skinny and super fast in time for this…?!?!

There is also the annual ridiculous European Adventure that HMC & I do every year. Regular readers will know that last year was a cycle trip to the Maas Half Marathon – this year is a little less ambitious although I suspect just as much fun as HMC, his wife and I head to Jersey to run a 5k on the Friday, a 10k Saturday and a Half Marathon on Sunday before flying home Sunday night.

And if that lot doesn’t get me motivated, I don’t know what will! It’s nice coming out of Winter and into Spring with a bunch of different events to aim for. To get me started, HMC have planned a 75km cycling jaunt across the South Downs next week which I am very much looking forward to. So it’s all go once again – exciting and a little daunting: just how I like it.

 

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01
Mar
14

aerial adventure

They say that you should try and not pass on your fears and shortcomings to your offspring. It would appear that I have been successful in this as my eldest (12yr old) son requested that, for a birthday treat, he would like to try a High Ropes Adventure. I am, ahem, “not good with heights” and my palms started sweating at the mere mention of it but I calmed myself enough to log on to Activity Superstore and order a “High Ropes Adventure for Two“… I just had to convince my wife to do it with him now…

Much grovelling later, and Mrs Eatingtrees and SonNumberOne had booked their afternoon for Half Term. It was all very easy and they even managed to change the date at late notice due to us not fully checking our calendar for planned half term events.

So, the day came and , after a briefing session, they were on their way up the ladders to the first level. Once clipped on to the safety wiring, they were off, navigating the high wires and series of suspended planks that was their route through the skies. My palms were now pouring just watching them and, once the circuit of the first level had been completed, my wife called it a day and joined the rest of the sensible people on the ground.

My son, wanted to go up to the second level, so we watched from the ground as he traversed more obstacles even further from the floor. I was reduced to pacing up and down at this point. Pacing up and down and checking my emails on my phone. In fact looking anywhere but up – where my son was making his way towards the grand finale…

IMAG0504 IMAG0506

The end of the course is a 10 metre freefall – the harness is clipped to a rope attached to a fan and you basically, and there is no subtle way to phrase this, hurl yourself off of a platform and plummet to the floor. Obviously, this is a completely safe “freefall” and science would back up the claim that a giant air brake is a pretty dependable system. Still, it is hard for a parent scared of heights to watch his first born throw himself from a platform 10 metres up.

My son was breathless with exhilaration when he met up with me afterwards, he had enjoyed the day and immediately asked if he could come back again to tackle the higher 30 metre freefall next time. He can, but I may not be able to take it all again!

The day was booked through Activity Superstore – they have a whole range of gift experiences for kids and adults, you can browse them HERE.




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