I tried hard throughout this blog to capture the literal and metaphorical ups and downs of the ride. I tried to be as honest and open as I could so that readers got a true view of what it is like to take on a task of this type.
If you can stand it, there are two SHORT posts to come today; a verdict on the kit I used, the final numbers (for geeks) and finally, a post on what's next.
While I still have your attention for a little bit longer, I need to say thank you to quite a few people;
Tim at Lutterworth Cycle Centre for finding me the last Bianchi Infinito in Europe in my size and getting the set up right.
Aleda Fitzpatrick at Rapha Cycle Club for her enthusiastic support for the idea, help in choosing the right kit and for arranging the reception from the team at the store in Soho. The latter made me feel quite special.
Brian Watson and Mark Tiff from WLRCC for the almost daily chats and pep talks to keep me going.
All of my other friends and fellow club mates at Warwick Lanterne Rouge Cycling Club for unknowingly helping me train and then for their encouragement and support along the way through social media and Strava. You have no idea how important those words were in getting me through the tougher days. Thanks especially to all those who took the time to tell me they were enjoying the blog and to the few hard-core supporters who have asked for it to continue! I enjoyed people telling me about how, when and where they read the blog.
To my Airbnb hosts along the way - some of you created a very special experience for me as a guest in your home. Thank you for adding to my Adventure.
Stuart Hepburn for coming down to support me on the final day and acting as my super domestique, getting me through the headwinds.
My non-cycling friends and family who maintained an interest even though cycling is not their thing.
My elder daughter Eleanor for being available with admin help whenever I needed it and for her words of support and love.
And of course Rachel, without whom none of this was possible. Thinking of you kept me going and seeing your reaction at the end made it all the more special.
A word of apology. I wrote my blog posts every day on my phone, post ride when I was tired ( and some times not so upbeat) I know the blog posts are littered with spelling mistakes, typos and grammatical errors. Sorry about that. For my own satisfaction I will go back and correct them. I will most likely add in all the details I forgot to put in. It was also quite hard to manage the blog itself and photo uploads etc just from my phone.
Finally, I will take my time to write up my 'lessons learned'. I will be happy to share them with anyone who asks and who has been inspired to go on their own adventure.