In July 2015 I entered my first mountain bike event and completed the last 35 miles of the South Downs Way, with 3,500 feet of climbing, about the same as climbing Snowdon or Scafell Pike, the highest peaks in England & Wales.
I planned on doing the whole of the South Downs Way in 2016 but stupidly fell off while training, going head over heels right over the handlebars and breaking a rib, but I recovered in time to do the offroad London to Brighton instead, 75 miles and pretty (if flat) along the side of the River Thames, and after a quick bump over the Surrey Hills another 35 miles of flat old railway line before the last hill over the South Downs to the seaside, so not too taxing.
2017 came and went without me getting organised, but I did the offroad London to Brighton again, this time on my 'fat bike' for an added challenge - boy do those big fat tyres take some pedalling!
This winter the weather has been awful, I had to give up riding offroad as there was too much mud even for big fat tyres! I didn't start again until April, but I reckon I'm fit enough now to try doing the whole South Downs Way from Winchester to Eastbourne in a single day - 100 miles and 10,000 feet of climbing, equivalent to climbing Snowdon, Scafell Pike and Ben Nevis, the highest peaks in England, Wales and Scotland, and about 12 hours in the saddle I think.
I'm raising funds for Arthritis Research UK - any and all support gratefully received.