On the 24th February 2018 I will cycle from Wokingham to Brighton. The next day I will run the Brighton half marathon alongside my sister Pippa Carter. Pippa has experience of running a half marathon having done a grand total of one before (one more than me), I must admit that running 13 miles scares me much more than cycling the entirety of Great Britain. The same day as the half marathon I will begin my journey cycling my recumbent trike around the coastline of Great Britain. I estimate this journey to be around 5000 miles and to take 91 days.
Due to my medical conditions I cycle a recumbent trike, this will be fully loaded with all of the equipment I will need for a self - supported trip. I will camp for the majority of the challenge but will spend some nights with friends and family or in hostels and hotels (where I will hopefully be able to have a warm shower and wash my clothes).
For someone with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome and its many comorbidities this challenge is not only a physical one; I have gastroparesis and one of the main challenges will be consuming and digesting enough food to replace the calories I will burn every day. I will have to carry and receive packets of my daily medication along the way (as 91 days worth of medication would be too heavy and take up too much space). I will have to manage and deal with chronic fatigue, avoid allergens and keep a careful eye on my heart rate and blood pressure. I will have to manage my bladder and bowel conditions whilst on the road. I might suffer from dislocations the majority of which I can relocate myself. And of course endure and control the muscle and joint pain cause by back-to-back-to-back cycling. At all times I will need to know where the nearest hospital is, especially in the remote areas of Scotland.
This will be extremely difficult, challenging and painful, however many of us with Ehlers Danlos syndrome overcome challenges like these every day!
I will update you every day with a very honest account of my journey.
I want to raise awareness of Ehlers Danlos syndrome and the difficulties we face on a daily basis. I also want to raise awareness of my personal very difficult journey with EDS and how I have improved my quality of life by building my muscle strength to achieve what I thought would be impossible.
I want to raise money for a charity I do a lot of work for - Ehlers Danlos Support UK, who vitally support and help those with EDS.
My Husband Danny will join me for the odd weekend and will meet me in Glasgow to cycle with me for two weeks (mainly so he can do some of the more remote 100 top climbs) and some of my local cycling club (Wokingham Cycling Club) are going to cycle parts of the coastline with me. Riding a bike is a solitary thing to do, but it can also be very sociable, so I would like to be joined by as many of you as possible, even if it is just to walk or use your wheelchair alongside me on your local road! I have planned my route and estimated my date at each location, please click the link below to find out more.
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