Wednesday 11 December 2019

I'm going to need all your help (aka "What have I done?")

Back in October 2018, I speculated about possibly undertaking a huge physical and mental challenge in eleven months time. Some of you were intrigued in the comments. I was deliberately obtuse, for fear of committing myself, but at the time I wrote:

"...if I were to undertake and achieve this challenge, well, it would be quite something. Something that most people never do. Something to look back on when I'm old(er) and grey(er). Something for my child to remember, with pride and maybe even amazement, when I am gone. I don't know if it would qualify as a life-changing experience, but I can see how it might be in that neighbourhood, a tiny bit."

I didn't do it. Eleven months later (Sept 19) came and went.

But now... now I am signed up. I am doing it in September 2020 [EDIT: postponed because of COVID, I'm now doing it in September 2021!] And "it" is... cycling 980 miles from Land's End to John O'Groats... in nine short days.

I know...what am I thinking?

It's an organised ride, I'm not doing this solo (unlike my "145 miles in one day ride" earlier this year), and I've paid for my place. There's no going back now.

I have a charity place on the ride. Full disclosure - it's cheaper (though still expensive) for me to sign up but I have to commit to a fairly steep fundraising target. I don't have a massive social network, so for me this is going to be as hard as cycling ~109 miles a day, every day, for nine days in a row.

[Pause whilst I absorb that last line again...gulp]

Anyway, I have chosen to fundraise for the Alzheimer's Society. My aunt died recently, and her last years were blighted by this awful disease. Other family and friends have also been affected by it, this wretched condition that steals away our loved ones piece by piece. I think it's a pretty excellent cause, as causes go, and I hope you agree. Because, of course, I also hope that some of you might sponsor me, or have friends and colleagues with corporate charity sums to donate. Any and all contributions will be very gratefully received at

Thank you, thank you, thank you. And wish me luck...


  1. Oof good luck! I'm a bit short at the mo, but I shall try to give something soon!

  2. This is fantastic, Martin! I'm full of admiration and excited for you too. It's going to be such an interesting journey in so many respects; I do rather pity your buttocks though ;-)
    Will pop over to justgiving v soon.

  3. I considered 2km on the bike at the gym last night an achievement so I am full of admiration for you Martin

  4. Good luck. Sponsorship sent.

  5. Oh my what a massive challenge but good luck with it - I see you are passing through my home town so will be tracking your progress. Will get on to the sponsorship site forthwith.

    1. Thank you, Alyson, for the support. Think I'm in your neck of the woods on Day 8.