2013: so far, so underwhelming

I have been underwhelmed by 2013. Isn’t a new year meant to herald inspiration? Where’s mine? Blogs, Facebook and Twitter were bursting with positivity on New Year’s Day: people embarking on their first exercise of 2013, people announcing goals: marathons, ultra-marathons, Ironmans and the like. The peer pressure to do something, anything, was overwhelming. After…

Arch to Arc: the documentary

Well, not quite a documentary. More a one-minute feature on the Arch to Arc challenge I and three others undertook in August. It included 90 miles of relay running from London to Dover, a seven-and-a-half hour row across the English Channel, and a 185-mile cycle thereafter to Paris. There is more to come, we are…

London to Paris: running, rowing and cycling – please sponsor!

PLEASE SPONSOR TEAM ARCH TO ARC HERE Remember comedian John Bishop crossing the English Channel in a rowing boat to raise money for Sport Relief? Bishop raised more than £3million for charity in his so-called ‘week of hell’. He cycled from Paris to Calais and rowed the Dover Strait before running three marathons in three days to reach…

The hardiness of the long-distance rower

I am well-acquainted with the loneliness of the long-distance runner; now I understand a little of the hardiness of the long-distance rower. It was on the second of two four-hour stints yesterday that the magnitude of rowing the 20-odd miles of the Dover Strait became glaringly apparent. We were rowing across the waters of Langstone Harbour on England’s…

Rowing the English Channel: a (tricky) introduction

I have long admired the graceful fluency of rowing that masks the reality of the brute force being applied. This fluency is more apparent, naturally, the more there are in a boat, like in the Boat Race when eight men pull in perfect, beautiful symmetry. We are a team of four – although possibly swelling…

Bob Graham blues?

Bob Graham blues? Is there such a thing? If there is, I think I have developed a bout. I feel rather empty; my Bob Graham Round, successfully completed a fortnight ago, has left a mental and physical void yet to be filled by other distractions. I am running my first mountain marathon, the Saunders, in…

Rowing the English Channel

The Arch2Arc Challenge 2012 – London to Paris on foot, by rowing boat and by bicycle in four days. The dust on my successful Bob Graham Round has scarcely settled and thoughts of the Paddy Buckley or Ramsay’s Round swirl around my head, but I must turn my attention from running to something more alien:…