Good evening followers. What a day this has been, one etched in my life forever. I cannot forget this day, just epic.
This morning, the riders were set off in stages, in a bid to get everyone at the end together. I opted for the first group, 7am start. I bounced out of bed at 615am raring to go, so positive so motivated! I had breakfast (see other days for description as it was the same!)
Oh look its me again:
7am came and I was first out of the blocks, with Dean, another Chestnut cyclist. Within 2 miles we were in Compiegne forest. It was honestly a privelage to cycle through there. Sun was rising, mist evaporating in the woods, it was breathtakingly beautiful!! I had become the leader for the day, and was enjoying every second on my own. I was going through more little villages, but in the sunshine today, they were just as epic as the forest. Stunning. Photos dont do the place justice, but here is one:
There was a water stop at 15 miles, but I was so far infront, they hadn’t set it up before I whizzed past!! After a phone call to the team leader, I carried on until the water stop. Thats 38 miles continuous cycling!! At this stage I was 22 miles into the day, a full 7 miles clear of anyone else! Picturesque villages came and went, and I remember savouring every moment.
Lunch stop. I arrived just as the van did, so I helped set up the food, then ate it! I was detained there for 90 minutes to wait for everyone else 🙂 🙂 Gone from being rubbish to being the best 🙂
After lunch to the final water stop was a quick cycle, 13 miles. Due to the setup or Paris, they were major roads, so busy traffic, blowing me around. Weather had turned and was cloudy, spits of rain about and colder. This was a quick cycle, 1 hour 10 mins tops, till the water stop.
After this break, we had to go into Paris as teams, together so we could spot our route and stay alive. They were very very busy roads, lots of traffic in no particular lanes or order, and there was us on tired legs battling through. As we got to 3 miles away, we all met up at a bar, in the opera region. Costly, €8.50 a pint, but it was a pre celebratory pint with other cyclists.
We then made our way to the concorde, up the Champs-Élysées to the Arc de Triomphe. This was such an amazing experience (painful one too as my poor bum was very sore, and the road is cobbled!) – cycling up that road was one of the best bits of cycling I have ever done.
From the Arc de Triomphe it was down to the Eiffel Tower. Such a monumental building, and almost emotional to see, having cycled from London!! It was a quick cycle around the tower, where I got to the finish line! YES!!! Here is the classic, cheesy but somewhat awesome photo:
I haven’t spoken about my legs. They truely died yesterday. Today they hurt, really really hurt every single mile. I had to dig deep, to get 7 miles clear of everyone 🙂 The last 4 miles of Paris, were as I said amazing, truely lifechanging amazing, but my legs were ready to divorce me, cut themselves off me and leave me. Thank you legs, you can rest now.
Here is a photo of the support crew:
Sian, Sam, Alex and Jess. Truely motivational people who helped everyone at some stage. Sam lent me his waterproof jacket as I left mine at home – such a help for me! Alex the mechanic, such a great sense of humour. Sian, she knows how to make sure those muscles and joints are stretched. That woman pushed pain to a new level. Jess the amazing cook who make sure our carbs were high! I know they’ll never read this, but I cannot thank them enough for getting me through this.
And I showed one on facebook, but look at this:
Stunning. Simples. How to make any pain go away with the power of “wow”
As you all know, and many have donated, I am doing this for Chestnut Tree House. Please please please can you donate anything to this amazing charity. They are truly amazing people. My just giving page for this event is here. Thank you.
Today has been an epic journey, lots of miles, lots of calories burnt. Here is the route tracking etc etc
And it was amazing to see most of my family at the finish line. Ikkle Megan with “Well Done Daddy” T-shirt was such an amazing sight. We had some champagne shortly after, which has never tasted so good!! Thank you to all my family, here or away, your support has been amazing!
I think thats it! I’ll do one tomorrow about my day tomorrow, but for the main charity side of it, blog is complete. Massive thank you for reading all of these. I type to a screen but know people are reading, which makes it worthwhile. THANK YOU!
Im off to sleep, and up early to enjoy Paris!!!!