Tuesday, 31 May 2016


Although I arrived home earlier today (not last night!) it is only when I attend the live performance that I truely know that I am back home. 
Lovely performance so far 😀

Its all over 😀😟😀

Woohooo!! Made it ....96 miles (with a few extra miles detour) today with more hills than I could count. I have to say, i started today with no energy in the legs ... This should have happened on day 2 or 3 ..... 
I spent the first two hours in the lowest gear 1:1 even for the flat (and lets not talk about the hills!!); I had to fight for each mile. Today was always going to be a big day both in terms of hills and mileage and I was gutted that delayed 'empty legs' happened today. 

But no matter, onward and upward as they say .... And by 11am the legs were back working and having to work extremely hard across the hills. 

Stunning weather though ... Perfect balance of sun and cloud. 

I do have a wee leg to complete to officially finish LeJog .... And will do over the next couple of weeks. But for now this training exercise is over. Never in my day would I consider hiking/biking landsend to johnogroats as 'training' 

Tomorrow (if the trains let my bike on this time) will be back to the normal routies of life ... 

Saturday, 28 May 2016

Its all going by far too quickly!!

Just 2 more days and its over! By 7.30pm on Tuesday, I will be back and sitting in The Royal Festival hall enjoying a bit of Beethoven. I have to say, I am desparately missing music after my ipod refused to work after a downpour on day 1... This is something that I need to sort out before I head out to do the solo - music features so much in my life (especially as i dont have a tv), so i really notice it when the music stops playing. 

Today was great (and yesterday) just cruzing along the lanes and roads (ok with the rolling hills in-between) with the sun out - it really does make a difference and I definately need to do more cycling... (Especially if i can sort out the bivvi situation! 

Thursday, 26 May 2016

84miles .... And I could have gone on 😀😀

This morning I set out thinking or rather hoping that I would make it to my accomodation.... 84 miles away. After my 70ish miles a couple of days ago and not making the intended 100miles .... I have to say I was a little nervous.

But I made it, and I even had many more miles left in my legs. Perhaps it was because I had a couple of easy days post the 70 miler ... Maybe it was flatter or maybe I have broken my cycling legs in.... Perhaps even I have also broken my saddle in too as that was so much better today 😀😀 

Whatever it is, today was a great day and I am looking forward to pushing it further (although tomorrow will be an easy day) and I hope to get over the 100 mark very soon... Although i really need to sort out my bivvi situation as that will give me the ultimate freedom... all in the name of training. 

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Easy day..., again

Oh my, i think even a non waterproof bivvi is better than heading into accomodation at the end of the day.... And I think that I am starting to go soft!! 
 Today was relaxed, short and well I feel uber lazy. 55miles, a stop for breakfast (or full scottish 😀), another stop for coffee and I was in my accomodation by 3pm!! So lazy and tomorrow it stops! 

Today i had a few car cruzers... One who was on the duel carrage way who tried to gain information about my sign. Its kinda scary riding along, trying to have aconversation and making sure that I keep on the road. As it is still early dayswith  my bike ... Multi tasking is not something that I should be doing at this stage 😀

Another incident was whilst I stopped for coffee... When I came out ... Someone had left a £1.00 coin on my bike... So lovely 😀😀

But Glasgow .... I arrived 😀😀

Glencoe to Crianlarch

Stunning 😀
I picked up my new shoes today and if only i had them earlier! 

Sun was out and stayed out for the day which was perfect for riding down the Glencoe glen. 

I had a moment today. As i was riding up the glen all i could hear was the bagpipes playing in the distance... 

It was just a stunning and easyish ride. Ik so it was mainly uphill and into wind BUT there were a couple of spots when the down hill spin was amazing. At the end of the day, I stayed at Crianlarch ... A place I have driven through many times ... And here I met someone/ some people who I know will be changed (or developed) by her trail.  

Sunday, 22 May 2016

Storm Wilson and getting on my bike..

It just gets better 😀. After taking the train out of Inverness back to Kinbrace ...and apart from one of my bike bags snapping as I got off the train (that I was very lucky to get on) 

... the sun was out and I had a great 40 mile ride with several people stopping me in my tracks to chat and donate. People are so interesting and so lovely, altogether 10 people have approached me to have a chat in the last 24 hours. 

However at about 6.30pm the sky taps were turned on and it didnt stop until 6pm the next day. 

Needless to say my not very waterproof bivvi tent (less poles this time) meant a night in the rain, the day (with storm wilson) meant that the 70ish mile ride included thunder and lightning and yes, I am going in the wrong direction so yes, I am going into wind!  But its all good fun at the moment especially now that my bivvi tent is in a bin somewhere on the A9 along with the 10 days worth of supply of food. In short this means that my bike is now not wanting to do back wheelies at standstil. So that has to be good. The day was finished off with a good dinner and company....
Today (Sunday) was an easy ride of 30 flat miles to Fort William (the sun is trying to shine) with Caroline who kindly joined me for this section along the canal. 

 At Fort William I will pick up my new trail shoes (that fit) .... It feels like Christmas so I may stay the day and Ben Nevis or something ... But

Hopefully with the sun out it means that I can use my camera and start taking a few pictures ... 

Thursday, 19 May 2016

And change...

So, I flipped upto John O Groats ... Spent 2 days climbing deer fences, wadding through peet bogs and sleeping in a not so waterproof bivvi tent whilst hiking for a good 30+ish miles per day but finding that I was not muscle tired - far from it.  

Keeping the feet in a constant state of white pruneness... The blisters are in full swing and I have had to revert back to what the 'purpose of this trail is' and weigh up how much recovery time will be needed post 'carrying on for 800 more wet miles'. This was not my challenge for the year, nor can I afford having time out of the fitness training regime for blisters and what am I doing with my time if its not pushing me physically? The prirority is not completing Lejog, its the exercise inbetween.

But I dont like not finishing something .... So a different tack is needed. I should highlight that my key purpose was fitness training and building up the hard 'exercise for 12 hours per day'. 

So I have got onto a train, heading down to Inverness with the hope of 'drying out' and purchasing a bike before training it back to the same train station and carrying on.

Even though the original plan was to hike up and cycle back... It seems now that I will do a mix.... Which also allows for time to do another perhaps in sunnier climates  over the summer. Perfect.


Its funny, as the trail progresses, the sense of smell hightens with an increasing awareness. 

I would say it really kicks in after 2 weeks on trail..... even 

though on the first week strong perfume can be smelled well. 

But 2 weeks and beyond I can even smell the cigarette smoke from a passing car, smell the different washing powders used and probably someones little blow that to me is all encompassing stench.

Now I should also say, probably anyone can smell me from a mile away ... which makes it even more interesting that with my heighted smell ... I cant smell myself.

Perhaps its so strong that I have blanked it?? Who knows ;0)

Friday, 13 May 2016

Made it to Wales ... Time to flip flop

So great to make it to the right bridge over to Wales. It took a couple of very long road days to get here but it was the most direct (but probably the harshest on the feet). 

This now means that I am in the position to flip flop up to John O Groats and make my way back to this bridge 😀.

So why? Well there are three reasons 1) There is a wee gathering off trail on the otherside of the country 2) I need to get back to Surrey for a charity walk and with the time it will take to get back from 'somewhere in Scotland' or even John O Groats it makes sense to finish or come off trail mid country rather than the remote moors. 3) there are friends and places I would like to visit or spend time with so this arrangement means that I can do this. 

So, flip flop ... My first one ever ...


First week of hiking Landsend to John O Groats LeJog

So about a week and a half ago I started on the 1200mile hike from Landsend to John O Groats with a little bit of the 'Ive done the 2600mile hike across the USA so this should be easy' attitude. 

Big mistake! Never, never, never should I ever take that view point and it was something that disappeared from my thoughts after day 1 on the coastal path! Hmm the coastal path... It conjures up images of dramatic views of cliffs, sea air and waves crashing across the rocks (placing yourself standing in one spot looking out... And I suspect that there is a reason for that). 
The reality was more like climbing up and down the rock staircases all day with more land nooks than I have ever appreciated when colouing in maps of the UK at primary school. Slow, slow, slow with little feeling of moving forward (with the number of nooks). However with blue sky all week it has added to my bank of coastal imagery. 

Nonetheless, move I have and now that I am in my third county I am hopeful that the pace should quicken..... unless of course my bivvi tent pegs decide to go for a drive across England in order to stay dry ... again. Aww bless, how I love and giggled at the non flapping wet tarp on the face all night again.... Ohhh Exmoor ... Oh pegs.... 😀