Friday, August 31, 2012

August round-up


A lot seems to have happened in August – I wrote 20 blog posts, when 6 was my average from Jan to July this year!  I think I got on the blog bandwagon and started joining in with things, like ‘What I Ate Wednesday’.  I am hoping to participate in a 'Foodie Penpal' blog-a-long in Sept - watch this space!  Plus I am taking part in 'Get fit, feel epic' during Sept.  Also, I've found that once you get in the swing, the more you blog the more you seem to find to say!?  Suddenly everything is blog-able!

I seem to be finding inspiration everywhere at the moment, the drive to push myself is limitless.  Not least from watching the Paralympics.  Seriously amazing.  So far I have been blown away and made speechless by the swimming and the cycling.  Men with no legs and only one arm make my swimming efforts look like child’s play.  I just can’t explain the effect it’s had on me, and how truly amazing they are.  One particular lady, Martine Wright brought tears to my eyes with her story of triumph over extreme adversity.  What an outlook on life.  Wow.  I’ll stop gushing now.

Ok, one last gush coupled with a big old 'squeee' to Rebecca at Weight Wars.  I read your blog via email and I was laid in bed this morning, attempting to convince the Kidlets that it wasn't time to get up and failing miserably, when I started reading your post for today 'End of August Happiness'.  I was so excited to see that you have found a blog that gets you excited about triathlon, so I happily clicked on the link - its only bloomin' me!!  My little old blog!!  Well, I can't tell you the amount of times I have clicked on that link to see if my diary still indeed pops up.  Lol!  Thank you!

The biglets had their first swimming lessons at their new times yesterday.  The leisure centre were great and found them both spaces on a new day at 4pm, so they both go in the pool and have their separate lessons at the same time.  Ideal!  This new found swimming ability really seems to have made an impression on Bebe and she has found some pride in herself maybe - its hard to explain.  There is such a small age gap between the big two that they are always treated as equals and lumped together as 'the biglets'.  I guess I have learnt that actually they aren't the same and they do have different abilities and needs and recognising this with swimming has helped Bebe find a sense of herself maybe.  Pretty deep for a 4yo, but I really think there is a positive change since the crash course.
Posing in their goggles in the bath last night

This time next week Paul will have gone to Lands End and be preparing to start the ride of his life the following morning.  I feel like I am in a kind of limbo.  It has taken the children and me 5 weeks to settle into our summer holiday mode and now next week school starts again.  The next two weeks feel momentous. Lochie starts Y1 on Tuesday, Paul goes for 10 days next Friday and then the following Monday Bebe starts YR.  So it'll just be Niamh and I for a while.  Melodramatic I know!!  But it feels 'big', not end of the world 'big', granted, but Christie 'big'.  A lot of firsts and I am kind of the anchor smoothing everything together..  Which is difficult when I don't feel too smooth!  I will think on it and try and write a succinct post.  Or not!

With the start of school comes the clothing labels.  I can't bear iron on labels.  Its a pet hate.  Finding somewhere long enough to iron the whole name, melting the synthetic fabric of a school jumper.. and just because I like a nice woven label!  Last year I hand sewed all of Lochies into EVERYTHING.  This year, with two sets of everything to label, I have cheated slightly by using rivets.  Nice woven label, 2 seconds worth of job, no needle and thread. Win win!
As we hit 'The Bers' (SeptemBER..  OctoBER..) its time to start prepping for Autumn and Christmas.  We normally start with a big apple harvest, from our 3 trees in the back garden, and with my new big freezer I can really go to town this year.  I am hosting a 'Mincemeat making party' whilst Paul is away.  I am a bit late with my mincemeat this year, but it won't be a disaster.  I also need to get cracking with some sewing projects..  And I have a triathlon at the end of Sept..

So, today has been a difficult day in the land of Christie.  The kidlets and I have not seen eye to eye on anything, and they are probably feeling as frustrated as I am!  Time to fix that before the afternoon is over.  And because Paul and I are super cool, we are going on a date tonight.  To the gym.  Uh huh!

Happy end of August weekend Clanettes x x

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Sportive photo

Before I forget, here is the photo from last weeks Sportive - not a great quality shot, the photographer has done something weird to it (my waterbottle lids are actually red!) but I managed a smile despite my slow burning death..!!  We were really disappointed that we didn't get a picture of my Dad, I have emailed the Sportive peeps and we have our fingers crossed, but I am beginning to think there isn't one.  He is just out of shot here, in front of me going over the bridge. My post about the actual day is here.

And I was brave this evening, I have talked to Paul about all of my emotions regarding RAB and I feel like I can start blogging again - its hard to blog when you can't talk about what you are feeling because you haven't talked it through with your husband..!!  Ha ha, anyway.  There is a great video here in case you are wondering what on earth it is that Paul is going to do for 9 days starting a week on Saturday.

Oh, oh, and another thing - after taking last week off, I diligently got back in my trainers, or saddle and ran 5k on Sunday and then I cycled 27 miles on my own last Monday!  The ride was a bit of a coup for me because I just found a route on Endomondo, Paul uploaded it to Garmin for me and off I pedalled..  I was taught a lesson too, a route that says 'hilly RIP' is not going to be easy, and it really wasn't!!!


And a big hello to Rosanna!!  Nice to 'meet' you, love your blog - I stole your ecard in honour of my getting back to it x x

WIAW #4

Happy What I Ate Wednesday!  Can you believe this is the fourth share I've done?  Seems to me that Wednesday comes round quicker and quicker and the time it takes me to eat my food gets longer and longer as I tweak and photograph it..!  So, today started with my usual muesli, banana and fruit juice
Mid morning was a coffee and an apple
For lunch I made mahoosive egg and watercress snadwiches, which we shared with pretzels and strawberrys
I'm trying a new herbal tea this week, after huge and painful supermarket deliberations I  f i n a l l y chose 'Yogi mint and licorice'. It doesn't quite hit the spot like my Lipton Morroco. However I LOVE the teabag label, what an inspiring cup of tea!  (I should also note at this point that we had an afternoon film with Vikki and the herd, and there was chocolate involved, although I didn't get a picture - so I'm leaving it at my virtuous herbal tea)



For dinner I made Chicken Satay with noodles and it was amazing.  We haven't had it for ages, and anything with peanuts and cashews is a winner in this house. The recipe is from Jamie Oliver's 30 minute meals and although making it in 30 mins is nigh on impossible, it tastes grrrreat.

And remember - ALL herbal tea should be served specifically in a glass cup/tankard, thus making the drink 'special'.  Herbal tea is 'special' because it makes you feel virtuous.  I like to drink out of a glass half pint tankard, so I get to feel like a warrior in a tavern - virtuously obv.!
There you go, thats what I ate this Wednesday.  Now go and join in the game and see what everyone else ate today!!


Saturday, August 25, 2012

Bank holiday weekend

Hello Clanettes!  I am sorry it has been a few days.  We have been busy in Reading, helping my sister and brother-in-law settle into their new house and today we have been out having too much fun cycling and swimming.

I thought I'd quickly just mark the day though - 2 weeks til RAB and Paul's rider number and info arrived yesterday.  We are in full on count down and a task the children and I will do this week is to find a big image of the uk (probably photocopied and enlarged a squillion times) and then spend some time marking the rough points where Daddy will be each day whilst he is away.

Paul seems very calm and collected - just me who is, as ever, emotionally charged!  I feel like we are finally at the edge of the last 9 months.  Bit like pregnancy... Or maybe not!!

Anyway, happy long weekend xxxx


Wednesday, August 22, 2012

WIAW #3

We're in Reading for a couple of days, staying with my parents because my sister and brother-in-law move house tomorrow and we are helping out (as helpful as it gets with 3 kidlets anyway!).  Breakfast today was porridge and fruit - a nice change to the normal muesli

Mid morning was coffee and more fruit

By crazy chance I had puy lentil and goats cheese salad again today, same as last Wednesday, and I made it for all the family, which we had with crusty bread whilst sat outside in the sunshine, followed by rhubarb yoghurt.

As an aperitif before tea we all had a beer ('stubby' in our house) and some pretzels.  Dinner was onions, bacon, cheese and eggs all scrambled up and served in a split wholemeal pitta.  Followed by melon and an ice lolly.  Delish!

Happy Wednesday Clanettes x x


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Today

Had to share this today!  Rebecca over at Weight Wars posted this to Facebook this morning and it made me chortle.  I often wonder if people get sick of me posting about my workouts!  Ha ha!  But as I always say, this is my blog and my facebook page, it's about me - you choose to read it :-)
This also caught my attention, posted by Adem Eker to facebook this morning.  I suspect that everyone can look at this image and place the meaning into their life.  For me, this was Whitchurch Hill last Sunday.  This is worrying about 10 days on my own with the kidlets in Sept.  This is my continuing search for enlightenment.  This is me, right now, trying to put meaning to the many connotations this picture offers.
Another facebook offering today, artist Jen Otey:
The path to self-discovery is filled with choices that the heart must make. One can choose to remain bound to a feeling because it is familiar or one can set it free and to rise into the unknown to truly discover themselves.

Last nights soup.  AMAZING - had it again for lunch today.  Chickpea and tomato
Despite what the recipe says, I blended the chickpeas in for thick hearty soup.  Topped with coriander and toasted sunflower and pumpkin seeds.  I had it with 2 slices of wholemeal toast - YUMMERS!

We are off to Reading tomorrow, my sister is moving house and I love a bit of unpacking and organising action.  Plus a bike ride with my Dad is on the cards, obviously!

Feel great today - no aches and mostly much better rested.  I had thought to go for a run tonight, but Paul is late home and I think I will save my legs for any hills you just know will come my way in the next couple of days.

Happy Tuesday peeps x x

Monday, August 20, 2012

Sportive #3


Photos taken with my phone - Me, my Dad and my view of the start line!  There were 'official' pics taken by photographers on route - hopefully I'll be able to share these later in the week.
We booked this Sportive with trepidation, the opening blurb warned of hills and whilst I can do distance, I REALLY struggle with hills - to quote the website "The course rolls out easily for the first few miles from the event start, through wooded lanes that take you down almost to the river at Whitchurch, where a sharp right delivers you onto your first trip into the red for the day, straight up the formidable Whitchurch Hill. From here it's west, crossing the Thames at picturesque Goring and turning south at Streatley. For the next 30 or so miles, you'll be exploring West Berkshire's rolling Quiet Lane network, roads designated as such for their beauty and tranquility. Then there's a hike back up to the ridge and a wake up call in the form of the searing descent of Streatley hill!
The route turns north from here, crossing back across the Thames below Wallingford and pointing towards the choppier terrain of the south Chilterns, more familiar to Woodcote veterans. A stiff climb of Garsons Hill false summits before the last drag to the courses high point at Cookley Green, before a drop into the Oxfordshire plain gives you a chance for a breather. What goes down though, must come back up, and Britwell Hill is a test equal to Whitchurch; higher, and at the sharp end of the course too!
This brings you to the final act. Enjoy the excellent descent from Stonor, but remember that this course started high. The final miles are stubborn, kicking you up sharply twice and undulating constantly to stretch you all the way to the finish.
The route choices come in three flavours as usual; short and mid total 86 & 103km respectively, with the full course weighing in at 136km with 1,827m of height gain. It's to be a spectacular day out on the bike!"

My Dad and I were on for the 'short' distance and Paul booked in for the 'full' distance as good RAB training.  Since the ride was a stones throw from my parents house, we arrived in Reading late on Saturday afternoon with a poorly Niamh. Stupidly I had stayed up late on Friday night, and coupled with little sleep on Saturday night due to Niamh, I was already tired at the start line on Sunday.

Sunday dawned HOT!  We decided to drive to the venue, rather than cycle like we did last time, because we really weren't sure how we'd be at the finish and I didn't know if I could handle another 6 miles there and back on top of the actual hilly route.  We arrived circa 8am, ready to see Paul off on his full distance and then get ourselves sorted.

Well, what can I say.  The first half of the race totally totally killed me.  It was so hot, I was tired, I had no energy reserves and I just struggled.  Whitchurch hill beat me psychologically, although I didn't get off, so I recognise the win was mine really.  Thankfully we arrived at the feed station at mile 28 and I was able to down 3 flap jacks, half a banana and refill my drinks bottle.  Fuelled by the food I finally found my mojo and really enjoyed the next 20 miles, we sped along with the same few chaps - over taking them and then being over taken in equal measure.  Then with only a handful of miles left to the finish, there was one hideous hill that just finished me, I was out of food fuel and reserves and felt ready to get off my bike and declare the whole thing over.  Half way up the hill a couple of fellow riders got off and were walking up - this urged my stubbornness into being and I have no clue how I did it, but at virtually zero miles an hour, I pedalled myself to the top and we cruised home.



I am soo delighted with our time!  7 minutes outside of bronze and average! To say I was tired and that I felt beaten, I am thrilled that we averaged 13.9mph (over 54 miles thats pretty good for me on a good day!).  The official time includes all breaks and stops - so our feed station, the 2 small stop breaks, all red traffic lights, general traffic and the three combine harvesters we got stuck behind on a minute lane for at least 5 mins whilst they reversed, so in my head I'd like to think I made bronze if the stoppage time were removed.. But what's in my head isn't on paper, and I need to make sure I achieve it next year!

What do you eat before an event?  Everything I have done this year has been in the morning, so I have a breakfast of porridge, milk and banana.  Depending on the event, I will sometimes follow that with toast with or without peanut butter and jam.  Events aside, if I am doing under 20 miles on my bike (or going for a run), I generally take 1 sports bottle with one electrolyte tab dissolved in it, which I find stops me getting cramp.  If I am going out for longer than 20 miles I use SIS electrolyte because it has carbs too.  Paul and I both love granola bars for energy whilst we're riding, and of course you can't beat a banana.

I ache today, I haven't ached like this since I started all this shenanigans back in the spring.  I pushed myself yesterday, I had nothing left by the end.  So I'm kind of relishing my ache today - I earned it!  I also learnt that you really can't put a value on getting enough sleep!

As always, thanks to my amazing Mum for watching the kidlets and giving them such a great day.  Without you I wouldn't be able to enjoy cycling with Daddy (although the term 'enjoy' was a stretch by the end of yesterday).  And you Papa, you were so fab yesterday, you really must try a sportive on your own when you won't be hindered by me.

Christie, you totally smashed your full route yesterday.  I hope it has given you a mental boost for RAB. Two and a half weeks to go and you have never looked stronger.

Here's to my next Sportive - 66 miles in the New Forest on the 06th Oct x x x

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Triathlon article

Nice little article my Mum saved for me to have a read over, I couldn't find it online so I scanned it in to share with you.

Thanks for all of your well wishes for tomorrow's sportive, as Paul and I would say to each other in good luck 'Kill it Christie!' - I will do my best x

Friday, August 17, 2012

Thoughts on Friday

I was nervous about this week.  The first few days after Paul goes back to work from a break of any kind are tough - the kidlets and I have to find our rhythm again.  But it was ok!  We got up and took Monday by the scruff of the neck and filled our day nicely and the rest of the week just fell into place.

The kidlets have finished their week long swimming crash course and Bebe has passed her grade 1 badge, meaning she is now onto grade 2 - 'proper' swimming of mini distances without buoyancy aids!  Amazing - she is at home in the water.  Lochie is so nearly there, but he lacks confidence.  Throughout the last school year Bebe had a Tuesday morning lesson, to coincide with pre-school, and Lochie had an after-school lesson on a Wednesday - Yes, Niamh and I went and sat poolside every Tues and Weds.
Very cleverly, I thought anyway, I got Bebe enrolled nice and early into the same class as Lochie on a Wednesday afternoon and felt very smug at my 'two birds, one stone' achievement.  Little did I think that Bebe would move into a higher class!!  Niamh also starts a toddler swimming class on a Friday morning come September, she and I will go in together.. 
Bebe, quite clearly, absolutely adores the water and has no fear - she was the smallest kidlet in their class this week and the only one to be brave enough to jump into the big pool with the instructor - they learn in a small, shallow pool and the big pool was a treat for those who wanted it.  I think Lochie is motivated by beating Bebe..  Something he is very used to doing, and I think he was shocked when she passed a test he didn't.
Paul and I decided long ago that there were two basic things we each took for granted growing up - riding a bike and being able to swim.  So whilst I am facing 3 separate poolside/class schedules again - and I do feel slightly insane at the prospect - I am also grateful that they have the opportunity to learn.

Exercise wise, this has been a light week - much needed after my many cycling adventures last week.  Over the weekend I had Saturday as a much needed rest day, then I cycled on my own on Sunday, then ran and swam with Lucy on Monday, cycled with Emma on Tuesday and am now resting until Sunday..  Sunday Sunday..!
Sunday is my 3rd Sportive of the year, details here and we are unclear of the route - but it looks hilly!!  I shall of course, report back as you know I will.

We are off to Reading tomorrow, staying with my parents before the ride on Sunday.  Paul is doing the long distance, my Dad and I are doing the short distance (when did 50+ miles become 'short'!?) and my amazing Mum is doing the Kidlet do. (The posts about my other sportives can be found here and here)

I have made a purposeful effort to eat better and more importantly, eat 'more' this week (I am going to talk more of this in a future post, and am coining it 'eating right').  When I started this journey my goal was to lose weight, and secondary to that, was to get fit.  I have lost the majority of my weight now, but I am struggling to lose the mentality behind losing weight and switch over to eating right for training.  I need to eat more of the right type of foods and I am struggling with this..  Any advice gratefully received!  Anyway, to this end I have started logging my intake and output at 'myfitnesspal'  Its laborious and dull, but I hope to see a pattern emerge, one that I can use to pinpoint my weird exercise headaches.

Speaking of headaches, I went for my ultrasound scan this week and happily everything on the inside looks good.  Sadly this means that I don't know why I feel so poorly and experience such heavy menstruation.  Although I do think my headaches could be linked - hormonally maybe.  In an effort to remain positive and pro-active I have gone for more acupuncture (I rave about acupuncture in another post here after I hurt my back) and will have a couple more sessions before my next period.  Can't hurt right?!

So, with my round up done, I shall bid you all a happy weekend.  Have a good one Clanettes xxx

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

WIAW#2

 Happy What I Ate Wednesday!!  This is my second week joining in with 'Peas and Crayons'
Today started with a glass of Apple and Cherry Juice, quickly followed by Muesli, milk and chopped banana.

Mid morning saw a cup of Morrocan spiced tea and an apple

  
 Lunch was Green lentil, goats cheese and spinach salad, with toast.  Followed by natural yoghurt, smothered in honey and almonds.


 Dinner should have been left over curry from the freezer, similar to last weeks in fact, but my wonderful husband took pity on me and brought me home my favourite - Sainsburys tuna, coriander and lime fishcakes.  Which we had with chips from the freezer and beans.  That was followed by a Starbar.  Perfect tea in my opinion!!


I have noticed for the second week running that I make a real effort with perfecting the look of my food on a Wednesday.  Rather than just slopping it onto a plate, I take my time, I slowly sprinkle my topping or almonds or what have you, and I actually think it might taste better as a result..  A lesson perhaps!



And remember - ALL herbal tea should be served specifically in a glass cup/tankard, thus making the drink 'special'.  Herbal tea is 'special' because it makes you feel virtuous.  I like to drink out of a glass half pint tankard, so I get to feel like a warrior in a tavern - virtuously obv.!

Now go, scidaddle, go and take a look at what everyone else ate today x x



Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Recent photos of note

Kidlets and friends
Lochies boot stuck in the mud - a crabbing accident by the jetty at Manor Farm (don't worry, he was fine!)
Heading out for a ride with my Dad - 47 mile round trip to the Sustainability centre in East Meon


I took several pics of Bebe and Niamh doing 'Yoga' in the garden after their night camping out (the boys are still in the tent here, on the right).  When I quizzed her, she laughed at me because I'm silly, she was practising her Power Ranger moves!

Cycing to Karate with the tag-a-long

In motion shot - I love this!!  (Don't think about hands off the handle bars or other fatal mishaps!)


Pancakes!  Every stay-cation needs pancakes, particularly when you've been camping in the back garden!

Bunting I gifted to new friends

Eating fresh food from the garden


Lochie participated in the Fareham Wheelers 'Ride-along games' and won the last race by being the fastest!



Birk Girls!  Tanned toes and nail polish
The Devine Feminine
Lugh wreath for the Tippers




Gather all ye healers and illuminators!
Gather in Sacred Circle and gather in Tribes.
Gather in Nature or gather in temples.
Gather to pray. Gather to sing.
Gather to dance. Gather to drum.

It matters not where or how we gather, only that we do!
United we stand. Divided we fall.

WE ARE THE ONES WE'VE BEEN WAITING FOR ♥♥♥
This is a pic I took with my phone when I was cycling last Sunday.  This is on my 15 mile loop and this is my favourite road to ride on.  The weather was glorious and although the picture doesn't really do it justice, I love that at the top of this rise, for a split second the tress make a tunnel into the sunlight.  I feel like I'm about to head into a portal into another dimension.  Like the Men-an-Tol, or something from a Charles de Lint book!  More than just getting some exercise in, and more than just trying to go further and faster, I have some of my most spiritual moments on my bike.  I pretend I don't like cycling on my own, but sometimes you have to be on your own to have your own experiances.


And two boasts to finish off!!  I cycled 125 miles last week, over the course of 6 days.  My biggest cycling week this year so far and I loved it!
Last night I ran 5k in the gym, in 35.09 - new PB


Sunday, August 12, 2012

G r a t i t u d e * S u n d a y

Today I am joining Taryn over at Wooly Moss Roots to give a moment for {Sunday's heartfelt tradition. A time to slow down, to reflect, to be grateful. A list of gratitudes.}


Throughout the week I've felt grateful for: 

* A stay-cation.  We have spent two weeks away from work and schedules and rushes and we have enjoyed ourselves.

* My health.  My ability to run and swim and cycle.  I am grateful that my scan is next week and I can hopefully put that to rest.

* The Olympics!  What an inspiring, amazing two weeks for Britain!!  We have probably watched all the major action and I have LOVED IT! 

* My Mum.  You look after us, puts our needs first, always supports us and you make me believe I can achieve anything! I love you Mummy, I hope I have the same relationship with my children that I have with you, when they grow up x x

* My Dad.  Daddy you are amazing. On the 01st of April you cheered us in after our first 50 mile sportif and hesitated over your own ability to take part in 66 miles in October.  You are now approaching your second sportif - we aren't even at Oct yet and you are easily on 50+ miles - and you wipe the floor with me.  I love cycling with you, I love how you take the lead and ensure I know when the hills are approaching and make sure I am drinking enough.  I love sharing this interest with you - I love your belief in me.  I love you x x

* My friends.  ALL of them.  Friends who I only know online, friends who I don't see as often as I would like, friends who I text daily, friends who live over the road.  Friends of friends.  Friends who I can chat about sport with.  Friends who have recently come back into my life.  Friends who I no longer see but who I have bumped into this week.  Thank you for offering me your friendship.

And here I am going to break the rules a bit, and explain in detail why I am so grateful for Paul 

* Paul.  I don't think I tell you how much I love you often enough. All the little things you do. The 'Shake and Bake' bits - the shake and bake is done by the person who is going to bed second (this is usually Paul, as I am usually in bed and asleep long before he has finished working or tinkering or whatever it is that he does late into the night).  Anyway, whilst I am brushing my teeth and preparing for bed, Paul will 'Shake' the duvet to check for spiders and then 'Bake' it for me by getting into my side and warming it for me.  The 'Shake and Bake' is but one of the many little things that I love about Paul.  I like to think our relationship is so vocal because we are both equals and we both have an opinion that counts.  Sometimes it would be nice to just have it my way, or to not have to 'manage' a situation, but actually when it comes down to it, Paul makes me happy.  Happy to my core.
You do some amazing things with the children - you are all currently being very noisy in the tent you all slept in, in the back garden, last night! 
More than all those things, you inspire me.  You make me want to be a better person, a better human - physically stronger too and I know we have all read about your achievements in all the prominent magazines now that you have discovered your 'sob' story is letter of the month, free kit winning, material.  I have lived the last 10 years with you, we adored our food, and man oh man we loved our sofa.  I have spent the last 3 of those years watching you make all of these changes and achievements and that is what inspires me.  You bought a bike, you got on it, and you rode it.  The first achievement was cycling the 4 miles to the station.  Then you went a bit further, 14 miles to Winchester. Then you got involved with a charity bike ride across Europe.  I cried with pride the first time you cycled the 34 miles home from Basingstoke.  Now you are training for RAB.  Its been the wettest June, July and into August on record and still you are upping your training and going further to train for the ride of your life in Sept - in 5 weeks!
I vastly underestimated the committment this training would take from all 5 us.  7 hours on a Sunday whilst you are slogging it out on the bike is a long time.  The long days are going to get longer, for all of us, before this is over.  So whilst it isn't me out on my bike, I might not be the one peddling, I am part of the team and we all have a valid part to play.  I am your pit crew, making going out and coming in as easy as possible.  This is a once in a life time opportunity and I'm going to make it as easy as I can - around the house anyway, I'm not going to start levelling any hills!!
I love you beyond this life and into the next one xxx