The January gloom has FINALLY come to an end and that means it is time for a LEJOG update for you all. With Christmas merriment well and truly over and the glow of the LEJOG carol service fading to distant memory we have had to face up to the fact that now is the time to get serious. If a four month countdown wasn’t enough to focus minds, a Sally-devised and Matt-endorsed training plan certainly did the trick.
Alongside the deployment of the training plan came a number of lessons in January. We discovered that the month isn’t so much about Blue Mondays (unless you are referring to our hands) but more ‘sub-zero and soggy Sundays’ and ‘Googling – will my hands ever stop twitching after a long cycle – Tuesdays’. But most of all, we have learnt that the key to our success in May is PREPARATION PREPARATION PREPARATION. Not just getting the miles behind us and the fitness up, but getting to know our bikes, learning the tricks of the trade (i.e. puncture repairs) and investing in some serious wet weather clothing. Plus listening to our bodies, the twinges, aches and the hunger – burning 4000 odd calories on each cycle means we need serious fuel. So, preparation is king and with it we can, and will, conquer LEJOG.
With this in mind, we can finally share with you ‘The Route’. Meticulously planned by Sally and based on the route from ‘A Safer Way’, by Royston Wood, the route takes in the glorious south, historic centre and wild North over the course of 13 days in the saddle.
So here it is…
Sunday 29th April – Lands End to Bodmin
Monday 30th April – Bodmin to Tiverton
Tuesday 1st May – Tiverton to Clevedon
Wednesday 2nd May – Clevedon to Tewkesbury
Thursday 3rd May – Tewkesbury to Wombourne
Friday 4th May – Wombourne to Hindley
Saturday 5th May – Hindley to Kendal
Sunday 6th May – Kendal to Lockerbie
Monday 7th May – Lockerbie to Newbridge
Tuesday 8th May – Newbridge to Blair Atholl
Wednesday 9th May – Blair Atholl to Moy
Thursday 10th May – Moy to Golspie
Friday 11th May – Golspie to John O’Groats (PHEW!)
Saturday 12th May – AFTER PARTY IN INVERNESS
Sunday 13th May – Fly from Inverness to London (in 1 hour.)
We know a lot of you lovely lot are keen to join one or more legs of the trip, either on your bike or as support crew. Before we lure you in further we feel there are a few things we should flag…
· This is the safe (but long) route up the country, with lots of country roads and canal paths as opposed to A-roads. It could get muddy!
· We are planning on cycling from approximately 8am each day. If we have some extra members of the team on any given day, we will try and find some spectacular coffee and cake stops or a decent pub lunch during or after the ride, depending on how strong we are feeling!
· The distances are between 70 and 80 miles per day and are targeting an average speed of 15mph (but have a bit of a way to go to get there, and can adjust our speed depending on who’s joining us on any given day). This is do-able but needs a bit of training so we suggest getting some spin classes in if you aren’t a regular bike user but want to join and enjoy it.
· We won’t always have support crews (wonderful friends and family) so if you want to join please make sure you are kitted out to do so i.e. wet weather gear and the ability to repair a puncture.
· We will post our accommodation locations each night on here shortly, but we will leave you to sort that out as we appreciate not everyone will want to go with our cheap and cheerful options!
· As this is all in the name of charity, we would ask that anyone joining for a leg secures a donation of £50 to the cause via our fundraising page. We promise the route planning time alone is more than worth it!
· We’ll confirm after party details soon… Did someone say Ceilidh?!
If after all that you are still keen, then please get in touch with us directly so we can discuss plans. We’d love to have you involved!
Sal and Abs