Time to up the ante

With the sixth challenge looming on the horizon (Chorlton Triathlon this Saturday), I decided last week that I very much needed to up the ante in terms of training. If I was hoping for everyone to sponsor me and give generously to the [21:21] fund in aid of Help for Heroes, then I equally needed to give generously of myself physically.

Having met up with a new running club last Thursday to hear about their marathon training (more to come on that), I joined them at 9am on Sunday morning, for what can only be described as a really great run. Chorlton Water Park & its surrounds have always been a favourite running venue for me, and everyone in the group was really welcoming & friendly. While it wasn’t the longest run I’ve ever done, we clocked up a respectable 9 miles by the time I got back home.

Now normally the Sunday training would have stopped there. However, a friend of mine (Kate) is cycling from London to Paris next month in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, so invited me on a small bike ride, she said. There might be a few hills along the way, she said.

Lies, lies and more lies!

We set off from Chorlton, and headed into the centre of Manchester, managing to not be knocked off our bikes are we traversed down Deansgate, before out back out of the city towards Bury. Trust me when I say, Manchester is a flat city. There’s no two ways about it, however, the road out of Manchester to Bury is so not flat. It turns out that my leg muscles aren’t quite as hardcore as I once thought. I was in complete agony going up some of those bad boys – having said that, I didn’t get off & walk once.

After leaving Bury we headed North further still and got to Ramsbottom, and then finally up to Peel Monument. We got to the Tower, and then were faced with 170 steps up to the top (well we couldn’t go all that way and not get a good view – and what a view it was). You could just about see the Hilton Tower in the distance with great panoramic views across North Manchester.

As we left the tower and started to make our way back home the rain kicked in & started to trickle off my helmet, as did my motivation. But when we arrived back to the city, we were greeted with a break in the clouds, and great rays beaming across the Big Wheel & other big iconic structures of Manchester.

Back home we’d clocked in 4.5 hours, having cycled 35 miles, while ascending 1000 plus feet from home to Peel Monument – and, while my legs are very much aching today, what a bloody good way to spend a Sunday.

Help for Heroes [21:21] Challenge

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About benjonlambert

Mountain climber, marathon runner, Olympic torchbearer & ACF instructor amongst other things: "Success never came to those who weren't ready for a challenge"
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