Friday, April 30, 2010

Shout outs

"If I have seen a little further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants"

So here I am. One sleep to go before I embark on a massive journey, and undertake the biggest physical challenge of my life. I certainly haven't gotten to this stage by myself, and I want to take a quick minute to send some shout outs to those who have helped along the way.

Firstly, to my family, who have all been super supportive, despite their initial (and continuing) concerns. You have all backed me up in numerous ways: by helping me out with buying gear; shipping things from overseas; helping to pack; and showering me with ideas. Also, you were all the first people to show your support by donating to the Starlight Children's Foundation via my donation page:

Thanks a bunch!

Next shout out is to the boys, with special mention to the constantly evolving Thursday dinner crew. The combination of great company, good food, and many laughs is unbeatable, so don't take it personally that I am turning my back on every one of those things to go and sleep in the desert by myself. I'll make sure I cook up something special on Thursdays, and am happy to host anyone willing to make the journey. Looking forward to catching up with a few of you overseas later in the year. "11 in 2011, what?"

Shout out goes to Graeme and his team at Blackman Bicycles. I walked into his store about a month ago without a clue about bicycles, and now I still don't have a clue, but I have a bicycle!!! Graeme and the guys have been great, and there's no way I would be as confident as I am with all my gear, or have all my gear set up as professionally as it is, without all their work. Graeme also donated a bunch of essential equipment to my journey in support of what I am doing for the Starlight Children's Foundation. Cheers Graeme.

To Sam and the guys at the 3 Weeds in Rozelle who hosted a farewell for me. It was a great night, perfect location, and we'll be back for sure.

To Elise who for the last three days has nagged and nagged me to go shopping and make sure I have everything I need, from baby wipes to bandanas. Thank you for making the shopping bearable, and also for following me around with a camera and helping to document the beginnings of my journey. To see Elise's blog and more of her amazing photography, visit her page:

I am writing this just before I pack up my netbook and make it the last item to go on my packed bicycle. Departure time is 8am tomorrow morning from Bondi Beach. I'll do my best to keep in touch and keep this space updated as often as possible. If you want to support my journey, you can do so by donating directly to the Starlight Children's Foundation via my donation page:

Every bit helps!

I just loaded the panniers on with all my gear for the first time, and my bike is SO HEAVY!!! The anticipation is too much and I don't think there'll be much sleep tonight.

Get excited!!!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

3 days until departure!!!

Most people I speak to: "3 days... are you ready?"
Me: "...eer...ummm, no. Haha!"
Most people: "you're crazy!"
Me: "Hahahaha I know hahaha I haven't even got half my gear hahaha"
End of conversation.

Mentally, I am ready to go. I am ready for the adventure. Ready for the challenge. Ready for the burning thighs, the cold nights and the feeling of freedom.

Physically, I 'think' I'm ready to go. Despite no gruelling training regime, I feel confident and fairly fit. My sister put my ride into context when she outlined that I am not a cyclist, and in fact only got my bike a couple of weeks ago. James went one step further when he pointed to Day 1 on my itinerary and asked if I had ever ridden that distance. I looked at the 126km written next to Day 1 with new respect and shook my head. No doubt this is going to be tough!

People roll their eyes when I jokingly tell them I will do my training along the way, but it's true that your body is amazing at adapting to its environment. Plus, because I am going by myself, my pace and itinerary are almost as flexible as my dislocating joints :p

Gear wise, I have to admit, I have a long way to go. I have written a list of equipment that I will take on my journey and highlighted the items that I have in my possession. About 50% of the list is highlighted, and although most of the missing items are small, they will make my journey MUCH more comfortable: insect repellent, vaseline, bike shorts, hand sanitiser, tube repair kit, maps! Haha I don't even know how to get out of Bondi on Day 1, but of course this is all part of the fun.

A huge shout out to those who have been super supportive on the facebook group, and to those who have gone one step further and shown this support through their donations to the Starlight Children's Foundation. You guys are the ones who will keep my legs pumping when the energy is gone and I'm on my last banana. For those who would like to donate, please visit the donation page via the link below, it makes ALL the difference:

Lastly, for those of you worrying, take comfort in the fact that what I lack in organisation and fitness, I make up for in being awesome :p I'll be fine.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Farewell Russ

Over the last 4 weeks I've been training for my adventure by riding riding Rusty to and from work. With no other contenders in sight, he must have thought he was a shoo-in to get the call up for the trip to Perth. Yet despite once being the slick and shiny object of my early teen desires, my 13 year old, heavy set, wobbly wheeled, groaning mountain bike with faulty brakes, has clearly had his day. Thanks for the good times Russ.