A charity thing

Jeez, it’s quiet in here isn’t it? First post since February. So much for posting at least something every week. (Side note: wonder how many posts over the years have started with much the same sentiment?)

Anyway, I break the unintended silence to promote a charity event happening next Saturday: The 2016 Kids’ Greenway Cycle Challenge. A few years ago, we lost a dear friend Lois to the curse that is cancer. Her son Hugh, five at the time she died, saw that her friends were doing charity runs in her memory, and said to his Dad, Graham, “why can’t I do something with my friends?” And so between them Hugh and Graham conceived, planned, and organised the Kids’ Cycle Challenge, which is now in its third year.

The Greenway is a 13.6 mile mixed-terrain path that circumnavigates nearby Letchworth Garden city, designed for enjoyment by all. Over the last two years groups of children from about four to eleven years old have assembled and cycled the route, raising money for Letchworth’s Garden House Hospice.

Because it’s the third time, a few of the kids, now nine, have decided to extend the route, and will by cycling a full marathon of 26.2 miles. My son is one of the plucky three, so I’m joining them. It’ll be a challenge for him, the longest he’s ever ridden before will by the 13.6 miles of the Greenway challenge in previous years! But 26.2 miles for me is not so much of a challenge. So…

TC-20160506-0013-2

…I’m doing the second half (ie, the main Greenway route with everyone else) on my unicycle.

I’ve certainly never ridden anything like that distance on one wheel before. And unicycling is a very different proposition. Along with the balance (which I’ve got cracked anyway), the huge difference between bicycling and unicycling is that on one wheel you can’t freewheel; you have to keep pedalling the damn thing the entire time. So I can’t rest down the hills, in fact they are just as much work as uphill as you have to work to stop it going to fast.

So… wish me luck, and if you are able to, please sponsor us: https://www.justgiving.com/ainsworth2016

Here’s a wee video of a training ride I just did:

This thing is going to be HARD. Please sponsor me!

(Just to clarify, there are 17 children riding the Greenway Challenge this year; a 13.6 mile route circumnavigating Letchworth Garden City. Three of the children, all nine years old, are doing an extra section before the main ride to make up the mileage to 26.2 miles. I’m riding this section with them, on two wheels, to accompany/supervise. Once we meet up with the rest of the riders at their start point, I’ll be switching to my unicycle.)

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