Eating A Sandwich Was An Effort

My piece I wrote for Dog Tag Adventures – the Dog Tag Insurance blog – is live now!

Here’s a snippet:

The location, the company and the encouragement from our guides spurred me on though I barely had the energy to bite into my sandwich at lunch I made it through the first climb of the week and then set about enjoying the second half of the day, which was all downhill! A few days of this and while I still struggled with the climbs compared to some of my fitter riding companions, I began to, well, get on with it. Pushing the thoughts of how much further? How far have we come? When do we stop? To the back of my mind I focussed on pedalling and breathing. It hit me that while I was tiring, I could still pedal, my legs would work and if I just concentrated I would make it.

And go here for the full article:

Oh and in case you are wondering Dog Tag provides insurance for travellers and sports fans as they navigate the world on search of adventure and you get a really cool dog tag with your policy number on!


Prospect Hospice MB Swindon Big Ride


The Prospect Hospice Big Ride is back in 2013. Once again there will be a choice of short, medium and long routes, all way marked with marshals at critical points, two food stops, first aid cover and a rescue vehicle.

Visit the MB Swindon website for details. Big Ride

The route is planned, marked out and marshalled by MB Swindon volunteers.

Croft Trail - Swindon

Built on land provided by Swindon Borough Council, the Croft Trail is managed by MB Swindon and maintained through volunteer work and donations & club membership fees. I have ridden the Croft Trail quite a few times and always enjoy a visit especially when new sections are opened like new wood work last summer.

The trails at Croft Country Park are suitable for a variety of skill levels with both a family/beginner off-road trail, and a more technical trail is available. The technical loops / options have features for the more experienced rider and can be used to session over and over again to improve your skills. There is a good selection of obstacles at the trail – none of them too scary and all rollable.

A typical lap will take around 20-25 mins for the newcomer while experienced Croft visitors have nailed a lap in under 15 minutes! Though they do miss out a few obstacles to get this time down…

“Open all year round and free to use, the trails are easily accessible. They are within a mile of Swindon centre and train station plus there’s free car parking at the start. There are even a few picnic tables should you wish to stay for a while.” – MB Swindon

I will add more pictures of the Croft Trail soon in the meantime visit the MB Swindon website for more info about the trail and details of upcoming build days.

You can also read some reviews of the Croft Trail at

The ghouls of croft.

You must be careful, dark things lurk in woods at Croft. Late at night you can often hear the howling, sometimes it sounds like a trick of the wind, sometimes it’s more distinct, but always it’s a chilling chant “filllll, filllll there is another hole to fillllll” many people have tried to exorcise the demon with offerings of high end esoteric muesli bars or chocolate brazil nuts, but to no effect.

A Great Day Not In The Office

I was hoping to fill this post with interesting photos of my day out in London but I was working and the opportunity to take any pictures didn’t really arise. I have one of The Shard which I’ll show you in a moment but for now here is what happened today.

Firstly I got up at 5am, yes 5 o’clock in the morning. Why? Because I arranged a breakfast meeting in London today with a potentially big new client. Not a bad idea really as I tend to start waking around that sort of time anyway. Now for some facts….

# Orange and cranberry hot cross buns from ASDA are awesome…
# Yes I had breakfast before I left for my breakfast meeting.
# Driving to the train station in Swindon I decided that of the last three Green Day albums iUNO! is the best
# First Great Western today issued a sensible no of tickets. 1 travel card and rail ticket combined, my receipt and my seat reservation. This was very useful compared to the half a dozen pieces of card the ticket machine usually spews out.
# Rail travel is over priced and we would not put up with such poor service from any where else. Late by 40 minutes going to London and had to stand for half my journey home. All for £123!

Meetings in London went well, breakfast was eggs Benedict coffee and orange juice. Lunch was venison and dauphinois potato with button mushrooms.

Breakfast venue – Franco’s
Lunch venue – Harry’s Bar

Now for that picture.