10 days to go! Cycling 45 miles (72 kms) for the Prince’s Trust

So it’s 10 days to go and my knees hurt! The other half acquired some new lights for our bikes this week so we could do some evening cycling training (really?!) We went out last night after work and cycled 14 miles around 2 lakes in the pitch black. Pitch black! Not that keen on that I have to say – a little spooky – despite the mega-wattage lights!

The longest training ride we have done so far is 32 miles. Just once. After that, I was exceptionally pleased to be home and on the sofa. 45 miles will definitely be a stretch. And I am still trying to convince myself that I like hills! I love hills. I love hills. I love hills…

Of course, aching knees/shoulders/legs/bottoms aside, this is really all about raising funds to help disadvantaged young people in the UK to change their lives and get into work, education or training. This year, The Trust aims to support 58,000 vulnerable young people, helping to give them the skills and confidence to find a job – for this they need to raise over a million pounds a week! We’re hoping that our Xerox extended team of over 100 people will contribute a massive £20,000 just from this one event – which would be absolutely amazing!

Thank you to those of you who have very generously donated already – you are very kind! If you haven’t, but you’d like to, thank you in advance for your support! Every Pound, Euro, Ruble or Dollar etc. helps! https://www.justgiving.com/AndreaLouiseDavis/

UPDATE: Thank you, thank you, thank you! It took 4 and a half hours but we did it!

My final total was £785 raised – far in excess of what I could have hoped for. As a team of around 100, we raised around £30,000! Seriously, you guys are awesome. Thanks again.

Before - at the start!

Done - 4 1/2 hours - but done!

Done – 4 1/2 hours later – but done!

Snake’s alive – there’s a snake in the grass!

No one mentioned snakes when out cycling! There we were cycling in the beautiful Buckinghamshire countryside and I spotted a coiled up snake at the side of the road as we rode past. I thought it was dead. I have never seen a live, wild snake in the UK before, so it was a bit of a surprise!

We turned our bikes around and approached it cautiously, caused a mini traffic jam in the road (it was a narrow lane) and then the snake moved. It had decided to make a run (slither) for it. Up its little head popped and it started to make its way across the rood – cars or no cars. We were looking for a stick to help it on its way and stop the snake from becoming roadkill!

At this point a man stopped his car complete with gun dog in the back of his car (a beautiful looking German Short-haired Pointer, I think) and asked what was up. So we showed him. He said “no point in killing something you are not going to eat” and promptly found a blanket from his car, calmly picked up said snake with the blanket, took it to the other side of the road into the grass.

The snake played dead. After a couple of minutes it started to move and headed away from the road and into the fields beyond. You can’t say this cycling training business is boring!

You can just see its head on the left

You can just see its head on the left

Off to safety!

Off to safety!

We managed 23 miles with hills that day and the pace was okay considering I wasn’t feeling 100% – sore throat and cold. And we’d like to have done some more but after all we had the Monza F1 GP to watch and I had plans later on with my Mummy.

Surely saving a snake is worth a little donation to the wonderful Prince’s Trust who do amazing things to inspire young people? 🙂

Please donate here if you can: bitly.com/1qK2Bg6

Training ride to the most south-westerly in Europe

I managed only one gentle cycle ride out this past week on holiday in Portugal. The hotel rented out mountain bikes – they were okay but the hotel staff seemed seemed surprised when I asked about a borrowing a helmet. I guess I have become used to wearing one now, from hating them just a few weeks ago. I rode out before breakfast while everyone else had a lie-in (even though 2 other lazy monkeys had their cycling gear with them!).

The journey was good – lovely and quiet – too early for the tourists – just the locals – and me! There were little markers on the way with messages such as “so far, so good” – right by the road so you would only see them if you were on a bike or on foot.

It was a beautiful sunny morning at the hotel, but in under 5 miles the Cape (St Vincent) was misty and cold. You couldn’t see the lighthouse, just hear the foghorn! No wonder they need the lighthouse there!

Under 10 miles in total but at least I did something! If you spare a little to help The Prince’s Trust.. you’ll be contributing to helping 50,000+ young people this year. Thank you!

http://www.justgiving.com/andrealouisedavis

Mist at Cape St Vincent near very big cliff drops!

Mist at Cape St Vincent near very big cliff drops!

Foggy, misty morning but you can just see the lighthouse on the left!

Foggy, misty morning but you can just see the lighthouse on the left!

Me at Cape St Vincent in the mist!

Me at Cape St Vincent in the mist!

Lighthouse the day before

Lighthouse the day before


The problem with falling off the diet waggon

… is that you have to get back on it again. Go through those same hunger pangs. Just when your poor body was starting to get used to being fed less.

Today, then, I was hungry! I resisted though. Had a nice Pret A Manger avocado and crayfish no bread sandwich for lunch! Yum!

Today I did it the old-fashioned way. I physically wrote in my (food/diet) diary. It was strangely satisfying!

Tonight I have managed to save calories for a large glass of white … and possibly enough for a small bowl of ice cream, too.

Cheers to you, my fellow food lovers!

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Cool glass of white, thank you!

A stressful day tested my resolve!

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Work yesterday was stressful. Not like life or death stressful. But stressful nevertheless. I was constantly interrupted so that I couldn’t get anything of substance done. It was unfortunate, but I did need to react to the interruptions for long-term … Continue reading

4 changes of clothes before breakfast!

So I set the alarm for 5.30am but somehow didn’t leave the house until 7.45. Why? I couldn’t find what I thought was a flattering outfit to wear for work. This is not for lack of choice, but simply due to the bit of extra padding my dresses are tighter and shorter – they rise up due to the extra around the middle and bottom bit. So that’s why I tried on four outfits before I was happy enough to leave the house!

That’s one of the things I disliked so much about being heavier – the care needed to disguise unflattering lumps and bumps. And conversely, one of the things I loved, loved, loved about being lighter – being able to have much more choice about what to wear. Plus … early mornings are not my best time in the day so those few extra minutes in bed were fabulous! 

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Shoe choice was equally lengthy - one must get the silhouette right!

Having got over the clothing dramas of the morning, I did manage to successfully complete day 2 of the new ’13 weeks to the beach’ mission. My food diary is complete and pleasingly I did not feel hungry or deprived on 1,200 or so calories a day!

Good luck to anyone trying to do something similar!

Until next time.

Today I confessed my weight to …

… an old friend.  One that I hadn’t contacted in a while. The old friend has been with me since the start of my journey 2 years ago. The friend is myfitnesspal.com!

I told my old friend my new weight goal, my current weight and how much weight I’d like to lose per week. I was rewarded with a calorie goal per day and an updated weight graph.

My goal is stated – written down – always an important thing for me and I have a date (and a reward) in mind. I will track my food and activity. Day 1 is complete. I am focused. It was good to make friends with my old pal again.

Wishing you a wonderful day!

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Just say no to the unnecessary chocolates!

Back on track … nearly!

I am in the pre-contemplation phase.

It’s 13 weeks to a beach holiday so plenty of time to get back on track. Have had a bit of a splurge recently with food and drink.  Have kept off half the weight for a year. So I guess my current weight is my new “maximum, I have to stop now, weight”. Time to stop messing around and get back on it.

Went for a cycle ride at the weekend (then rewarded myself with a bottle of wine). Oops.

Today I am back… let the 13 week mission begin.

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Dinner was lovely, but now it’s time to rein in the treats.

Spring Equinox and sun – a good time to reclaim good habits

It seems there’s a feeling amongst my friends and me that now is the time to get healthy – so I’m back on the blog! Yesterday was the Spring Equinox and represented day 4 of my own reclaiming of healthy living habits.

I’m re-evaluating my goals (some that have been mislaid in the few months… ahem!) and will be setting some new ones. I’m going to start with a review of the past few months and what’s gone well and what has not.

Stay tuned and let me know if you have similar challenges or questions.

Happy Friday! And happy good habits, too.