Monday, January 4, 2016


So with the New Year 2016, it brings new dawns, new days and hopefully new ways! I am not one for New Year resolutions but would rather concentrate on new goals for the days, weeks and months that lie ahead. Resolution is a formal expression of opinion or intention. A goal is an aim and achievement that has a start and an end. It is decisive.

Yes! I am the quiet, unsuspecting maybe sometimes shy guy. My hearing loss from birth has been part of that molding pretty much my whole life but having said that, I was always up for a challenge whenever it presented itself. I have in the past, over the six years made the transition from road biking into mountain biking and have pretty much trained on my own. I did this not because I felt I was better than anyone else, but rather I started to enjoy my own company. I started to look at how I could push my own boundaries on the basis that I was starting to lean into the enjoyment of endurance cycling. I have never felt the need to prove anything to anyone but rather only to myself if I felt the need to. I’m at a stage in my life after twenty plus years of cycling where I am enjoying it on a different level and where I have committed to take on a challenge, I set my heart on it.

Sure! I have had failures, but failures in life don’t determine who you are. What determines you is what you do with that failure. Whether you determine to conquer that failure by trying again or just letting it be but it doesn’t affect those around you but rather it affects you as an individual whichever way you choose to allow it to.

As I’ve got older, what seems to work for me is gratitude! Sometimes in failure we need to be grateful for the failures too. It has that power and can sometimes define you. Gratitude is sometimes hard to work on but it is possible to practice. I have those close to me that have always taken the time to find out more about me and that know my passions, my fears, my journey, my story and offer me the respect, support and understanding. For them, I am most grateful! I am also grateful I have the opportunity to try do something for others:

The Freedom Challenge race across South Africa 2016, a race I dreamed of doing back in 2009, attempted in 2014 deriving a massive learning curve from the failed attempt and now going back to finish the ‘business I started this year, does still come with its butterflies and nervous anticipation.

I am so looking forward to 2016 even though I know it could be a potentially tough year for many. My mind is focused, my goal is clearer and the past experiences are my lessons as I trudge the next five months of training. The biggest thing I know and as quoted from the Freedom Challenge advisory;

 ‘Due to the nature of the terrain and time of year, the Race across South Africa is a physically and mentally demanding undertaking – to complete this challenge, riders need to be adequately trained, equipped and prepared.’

-          So, I know what I’m training for…

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