I’m known by my close friends for once claiming “catching is never easy”, I am blissfully unaware of the off side rule, and the last time I went for a jog was probably 2012. So I guess you could say that I’m not your typical sporty type. BUT that’s all about to change guys and gals, this gal is off on a new challenge…and it’s sporty.
I’ve touched on my experience with cancer before, ranting about the frustrating things people say to you, and feeling a little bit more chipper when I came up with a few things you SHOULD be saying to your friend with cancer. Through everything, I promised myself that I would do something to give back as soon as my body felt ready. I wanted to take on a new challenge, and it had to be BIG. I wanted people to think jeeeezz, this is going to be tough, I’d better sponsor her!
Firstly, I chose to work with the University of Southampton on their “You’re It” campaign to fund the Centre for Cancer Immunology. Then, I needed to figure out what I was going to do to raise a ton of cash. I didn’t quite fancy throwing myself out of a plane, or climbing a mountain, but I did want to do something that I would need to train for, and hey who knows, maybe I would finally find the sportswoman in myself! I settled on cycling, it felt achievable, something I might even enjoy, and something I could do bigger and better than any other sporting challenge. With a bit of research on locations, I settled on Bournemouth to Brighton, 100 miles to be specific.
100 miles you say? Yep, that kinda stuff ain’t just gonna happen overnight. I’ve had to mentally and physically prepare myself for my new challenge, and here’s how.
Shouting about it and sponsorship
The second I received my first £5, I knew I had to do it. The support that we have had so far has been phenomenal, and everytime I get out on my bike, I think of everyone who has parted with their hard earned cash to support the cause. Don’t be shy about whatever new challenge you’re taking on, tell people, make it real, and commit!
Be kind to yourself
I started out with a rigid training schedule, and I 100% need that to keep the momentum going. However, there has been moments where I’m doing something else, and I just can’t fit the training in. Well guess what, life is still happening, and you can’t be too hard on yourself if the training doesn’t quite go to schedule. I’m guessing that if you’re reading this, you’re doing something a bit out of your comfort zone. Be gentle, if you need a break, take a break.
Work up to your goal sensibly…if you go in all gun’s blazing, my bet is you’ll be sick of it in about 2 mins.
All the gear…(no) some idea…
Let’s go way back to my first time on a bike in a long time. It was a pretty epic start, as we cycled from Fisherman’s Wharf to the Golden Gate Bridge in none other than San Francisco. The only problem was, I chose jeans for the occasion and it couldn’t have worked out any worse.
Jeans error in the past, the lovelies over at Wiggle offered to kit Ross and I out head to toe in exactly what we needed. I left it in their capable hands to recommend exactly what we needed, and would ya believe it cyclewear can actually look pretty damn good. Whether you fancy going for pure performance, or a bit of pattern (yes please!), dhb will fit the bill.
These tights ain’t going anywhere, they are literally the comfiest thing ever…right down to the padded bum lol. I just hadn’t realised how beneficial it would be to have streamlined clothing that is breathable yet warm. Long gone are the days where I get soaked head to toe whilst training, gloves and overshoes are here to save me!
So yeah, I really can’t underestimate the positive impact that having the right gear has had on my training. Not to mention that totally looking the part instantly makes you want to get out there and get going!
Focus on the end goal
Do you know what is honestly getting me through this? Visualising myself reaching Brighton pier, and realising that I have actually bloody well done it. I’m hoping there will be a mocktail and a massage thrown in there somewhere too but ya know, I guess that’s not quite the end goal.
So don’t think about what it’s going to be like. It is what it is, if something goes wrong, something goes wrong. One way or another, I will cycle into Brighton and over £2,000 will be going to amazing cause…that’s all that matters!
Have you ever thought about taking on a new challenge? Or have you done something amazing, and have a few tips? Please tweet me or tag me on Instagram as I need all the help I can get!
If you fancy sponsoring me and more importantly, supporting the amazing work that the Cancer for Centre Immunology will facilitate, please click here. If you’re nosy like me, you can also have a read about my cancer journey whilst you’re there…
*I received no payment for this post, however Wiggle are providing all of the dhb clothing to get me from Bournemouth to Brighton – thanks guys!