In November 2009 I headed off to Mexico for the toughest physical challenge of my life, by taking part in a charity bike ride to raise money and awareness of CRY.
The cycle took 6 days to cross the 500km Yucatan Peninsula and I am pleased to report that I completed the journey almost without a hitch.
The route took me from the colonial town of Merida through the famous Chichen Itza and on to the finishing point at the coastal town of Tulum. It was certainly as challenging as I had anticipated and I was glad to have done as much training as I did – but even so there was nothing I could do to prepare me for the heat and humidity of the region.
The majority of the participants suffered in the 30°C plus temperatures and a few had to take cycling breaks during the day. I was determined to pedal every single inch of the journey as I knew that the support I had been given deserved my best efforts, so I did just that from the start line right through to the finish.
I was also determined to complete it in memory of my best mate Matthew Cooper, who died suddenly in 2003 aged 22.
Mexico is an amazing country and travelling through it in the way that we did meant that we got to see, smell and taste parts that the average tourist would never experience. The encouragement that we got from the small children who would run out from crumbling houses when we passed waving and shouting “Hola, hola” was fantastic.
I would like to take this opportunity to say a huge thank you to everyone who supported me and to those who donated to help raise an awesome total of around £3000.
Many people have asked if I would ever do it again. My answer is that I will think about it while I let my various body parts recover!