I’ve not blogged for nearly a year..how many noticed? Very few I say, but this is still for me rather than others. I did eventually fix both my sites, no idea why things worked this time instead of when I have previously tried things…but work it did.
So what did I do in 2018? Change and challenges is the best overview I think.
We’ll start with the stats!
- Swarm checkins: 944 (+101)
- Countries visited: 5 (-) (Germany, Spain, Bhutan, Nepal, Austria (just for lunch))
- Michelin Meals: 2 (-4)
- Miles run: 62 (- 28)
- Races completed: 2 (-)
- Miles walked: 570 (+391)
- Cathedrals visited: 2 (+1) (Bamberg, Vienna)
- Movies seen at cinema: 6 (-)
- Theatre visits: 0 (-2)
There appeared to be a lack of cultural activities. With training for a long distance walk and then much of my time took up travelling to work abroad, there was less time to get out and do things around town. Something to do more of in 2019.
The first event of note was my first Escape Room, with my German colleagues. I ended up on the winning team, even if we finished it with only a couple of minutes to spare.
The only other highlight was a weekend camping out with Adventure Queens. This is a Facebook group, with the aim of connecting and encouraging women who want to get out and do things. From doing their first night in a tent to walking around the world, it is a very supportive group, ready to offer support, encouragement, ideas and congratulations to all who post.
The month started off with one of my regular runs – The Winter Run. This is my 4th time taking part. With my overall lack of running miles, wasn’t expecting much, but I did have a great run/walk race. About a mile in I complemented a fellow runner on her leggings and ended up going round the course with her and getting her to the finish (she’d been about to give up)
I went to The Story conference in the middle of the month – see the previous blog posts for my write up of that day.
This year’s challenge was another attempt at a 100km ultra walk. After pulling out last year before the event, due to injury, I decided to have another go, so I seriously started my training this month. These walks were usually on my own, but I did get out for a few miles with Wine Club. As the years go by, we have turned to more than just drinking wine 😊
This month I made the biggest change. I stopped working for a company and started my own with a former colleague. In the same area (digital and marketing strategy), but smaller and more targeted. This took me a long time to make the step (it’s quite scary) but looking back, it was a good thing to do. Year 1 has been great, we’ll see how we go in year 2.
Th first Michelin meal of the year was at Celeste at the Lanesborough. An amazing room and fantastic meal
More walking this month, with an outing onto the South Downs. From Arundel, myself and 2 other women from Adventrue Queens headed west to the Gumbar Bothy for a nights camping, before carrying on to Chichester.
The main reason for this was to try out my new rucksack and tent – which I’d bought in preparation for my “holiday” at the end of the month. It was holiday only in being away from home – I spent a week walking around the Isle of Wight. In the end, only 2 days camping due to the rain and mud, but a successful perambulation of the island. A total of 73 miles covered across the week.
At the end of my week of walking, it was time to start the new “job”. So instead of going into the office every day, I started to work from home. Initially difficult, I have slowly worked out how to do this, even without a study to work from (the ironing board acts as my desk).
Walk training carried on, along with volunteering at 2 races. A small one to start with, my running club’s race and then the London Marathon again. Fewer photos this time, but I quite like my Mo Farah picture
Lots of walking done this month. Final weeks of training before the main event in the last weekend – walking 100km from London to Brighton. This was done with Action Challenge, who had great organisation across the event
I’d decided to split this across the 2 days, with camping overnight. Just over 36 miles on day 1 and 29 on day 2. Waking up and getting day done was not too bad, it was however far worse on the day after, very hard to walk and feet in agony! But I did it, in a final walking time of 30 hours, with an elapsed time of about 36 hours.
When training for this, you only really go up to about 30 miles max – or at least the plan I followed did. The rest of it is all mental struggle, to just keep pushing onwards. (although the ability to NOT get blisters is an essential skill)
I managed to remember to get tickets for Trooping the Colour this year. Not the main event, but the one of the 2 rehearsals. An excellent event, definitely something you should go to
Another Wine Club event…this time we headed to Manchester for an attempt at Go Ape. We generally managed it, except for one obstacle which caused a fair bit of trouble. A very silly afternoon – and at least the rain waited until we had finished.
One final mini outing was to Kew – I don’t use my membership nearly enough, but I enjoy it when I can
A little busier this month. My ‘regular’ trip to the British Grand Prix for a day in hospitality was made slightly even more sporty by staying to watch England in the football World Cup on telly. I did a second GP this month, with a trip to the German event. As I was in Germany for that week, I drove to Hockenheim and camped.
An old school friend was visiting London, so we met up and then joined in with the anti-Trump march for a few hours. The Trump baby balloon that could be found in Westminster Square was something special!
But a sad end to the month as my remaining granddad died. He’d had a fall and had been in hospital; he’d recovered from that but it was too much for his body.
A fun day at the Running Club sports day. Some serious races and some fun ones, especially the fancy dress.
Plus my first geekcon, a trip to Nine Worlds. For some reason, I took no photos here, even of the excellent cos play that was evident
I spent a lot of this month on Germany, so had a weekend trip out to Bamberg https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bamberg which is a World Heritage site. Fascinating medieval town.
And another weekend sent me back to Garmisch and Zugspitze. This time I took the cable car up and then walked all the way down. A total of 15.6 miles, all downhill, a few scrambles but basically walking. A good day, but my legs suffered the next one!
I took the opportunity of having a day with no meetings to fly back from Germany the long way round, via Vienna. I booked flights with a long lay over and nipped into the city to see the cathedral and to have lunch
This was a month of seconds. My second Michelin meal of the year was at Bibendum Another superb room and great meal. And the following weekend I ran my second race, the Royal Parks half, on a day that started wet but eventually dried out.
The next weekend was spent at Yestival, a festival dedicated to adventures and challenges. Lots of ideas shared about adventures as well as lots of practical advice about planning, fund raising and executing them
At the end of the month, Charlotte, my cousin, had finally decided to get married. A vey different experience, as it was a Greek Orthodox service and party, but it was good fun
A month of holidays – which I’ll write up separately. But first a visit to Bhutan (via a day in Nepal) with the parents. And then a week in Tenerife on my own, with time spent walking the mountains
I finished the year in the same way I finished last year, with a few days away walking. This time I went to the Peak District for a couple of days walking up hills, along with a day on a navigation course. Dome good learnings, even if the weather was wet and windy.