Bruntwood Ellipse Action Photo’s Of Gaz and Team

26 09 2011

Thanks to Bruntwood for providing these.


PS – Only a few days left to help us attempt to beat cancer

Typical Gaz, at the front of the peloton

Gaz and Tommo


Only 5% of people who were morbidly obese will keep the weight off, after non-surgical weight loss.

25 09 2011

ONLY 5%?????

Damn ………….. or, if you are reading this after the water-shed then……SHIT !!!!!

I posted about 6 months ago, saying I was feeling my weight loss results felt “Temporary” that I was on “Borrowed Time” Feeling like I was buying smaller clothes only to need to buy bigger ones as I wasnt able to sustain my (then) small size (for me) ….Fast forward by 6 months and I have lost more weight, wear smaller clothes and (I might have mentioned this) won another award 🙂

I no longer feel that I am on borrowed time, I have dropped, since then, to 13 stone and in recent times I have managed to stay there, without too many issues, I did get a little worried that it kept dropping but I *Think* I have the formula now , the most critical thing about that Formula is to not take my eye off the ball tho…..!

I have also started to take in a couple of protein bars a day, added with milk, that’s giving me over the recommended intake of 55 g’s per day, so that’s a small victory.

I know how much Clive LOVES that Jersey so I wore it JUST for him, it’s too big now, so will probs be the last time I wear it, as such, I went a little crazy with excitement :0)

It’s Fuel:

I’ve always said that food is the mortal enemy to me, this week, I have changed how I perceive it. Sure, that’s not helped me….YET !

On Sunday I set a pretty good time, I tore up a LOT of miles at 20+ Mph after climbs that I’d NEVER dream of doing, but in my mind, I have that niggle, “You have not fueled this engine, just think how good you can be WITH Fuel”

Half way through the ride I suffered a REAL nasty headache, a potential “bonk” when I read up about it (also, my tyre clipped the kerb edge on the final turn, maybe because of going too fast, maybe because of the “bonk”) , it took me a full 24 hours to shake it, it did mean that I wasnt 100% towards the end, yet I still managed a 1 mile average at over 23Mph, so food isn’t the enemy, it’s about to become my friend, I just need some help & guidance !

& in making a start, one MAJOR Issue I have is “Mixed foods” , eg, I like chocolate and nuts, but eating a bar with both in just freaks me out but the protein bars are like a chocolate with a crunchy biscuit in the middle, something I would never have done, just a few weeks ago, so I have made more progress with this in the last few months than the last 29 years but the truth is, that the steps I have taken are TEEN TINY Baby steps on a road that’s a hundred miles long !


A few more pictures of the awards night, I believe that some of the winning “local” award members get entered into the “Greater Manchester Sports Award” and I am aware that a few people have also nominated for the Manchester Be Proud 2011 award (the one I won in 2009) added to the potential of the Olympic Torch relay, it means that I *Might* become a busy boy and that Clive’s suggestion of a cabinet might indeed need to happen 🙂

Pride of Tameside award 2011 - MCFC Eastlands

As a Manchester United Fan, This was taken for Irony

Ironic !

Bruntwood Ellipse 2011:

A few more pictures I found on my Phone for your enjoyment !

bruntwood ellipse 2011

Bruntwood Ellipse 2011 Finish Line

After the Punctures

Comes the new tyres (and I removed the Specalized branding too, stops the chav’s) and I have also thrown on a rear mud guard as this is the “Winter” bike before the snow arrives (in about 4 weeks if “they” are to be believed)

Cavendish claims world title !!!!

25 09 2011

Mark Cavendish won the men’s road race world title in Denmark as his British team rode a near-perfect race.

The eight-man GB line-up ignored all breakaways to control the peloton over the 266km course, delivering Cavendish to the finish in ideal fashion.

Cavendish exploded across the line in a bunch sprint, ahead of Australia’s Matt Goss and German Andre Greipel.

The 26-year-old’s victory is the first British world road race success since Tom Simpson won gold in 1965

The word LEGEND, Doesnt even come close !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

mark cavendish rainbow jersey 2011

mark cavendish rainbow jersey 2011

So Long & Thanks For ALL The Memories !

22 09 2011

Its been a totally AWESOME 3 years but sadly, it’s now time to say Goodbye…………..

No, not to me, but to team HTC Columbia

I credit Lance Armstrong with getting me “Into” Pro-Cycling but HTC Gripped me and gave me a passion for it, the teamwork, the ethics they have, the spirit, the charters , bar a few end of season classics, it’s all finished.

HTC’s last job in the Pro-Peleton was to give Mark Cavendish a warm up for the Worlds on Sunday by riding the 2011 Tour of Britain and boy did they do that, lets hope Cav finishes that job off.

It was far from just being about Cav fr me tho, there (was) Big George “Captain America” Hincapie, Tony “Panza-Wagon” Martin, Mark “Price Harry” Renshaw etc etc, all of whom were/are stars in their own right and all of whom battled tooth and nail to deliver to the Manx Missile to the line !

They will be missed, it looks like Cav is off to Team Sky, that, I suspect , means less wins, he can win without a Train but I suspect he’s become a little too used to one now TBH and with Wiggo in the team as well, he will need his lieutenants in the mountains (Tho, as I’m not a Wiggo fan, I’d drop him and sign everyone from HTC If I were David Brailsford as I just cant see Bradly WIggins EVER Winning a GT)

I see a couple of Big Teams have also merged, Radioshack & Leopard Trek to name the biggest, cycling is changing, I just hope it’s not at its detriment.

Finally, i’ll leave you with the end of the most AWESOME Cycling Film EVER, Chasing Legends – You need your sound turned RIGHT Up for this, its AMAZING !

2011 Bruntwood Ellipse – My Proudest Cycle Ride EVER !

18 09 2011

Today started COLD and moist…..But that didn’t matter, for today was the biggest challenge of my short cycling life.

The Bruntwood Ellipse 2011.

A challenging 55 Mile route with 4  leg stinging, lung busting climbs, a ride of this sort isn’t something I would have WANTED to do last year, never mind BE ABLE TO .

Bruntwood Bike Number

My self-set challenge for the day, was to stick with “Tommo” for at least 20 miles, let’s remind you all of Tommo and Gaz again eh ?

Tommo & Gaz, Before it all began

Sure, I’m a “little” lighter than I used to be but hey ho, Tommo is a freakin machine who runs marathons for “FUN” !

Tommo, I can’t thank you enough for being the “Best Mentor EVER” Right, enough of this gooey sh….ow of emotions.

I’d met Andy and Tommo had met Paul, we all set off together at 8.30, I got a little excited and got in a breakaway early on and for the first 5 or so miles was averaging over 20 mph per mile, I realised that Tommo and co had dropped back and that, with around 4000ft of climbing heading my way, the pace was suicide, so I back off, Tommo caught up and the other 2 were never seen again.

Tommo put a lot of faith in me up the first climb and we did it, we made it together, then onto the second, long ass drag of a climb, I stayed with him till half way and then boom, the pace was just a little too much and I slipped back.

Sadly my view for the next few miles was of Tommo’s butt, but I’d held on for 25 miles so it was job done !

From there on out, it was survival , pure & simple !

I was doing things that I NEVER thought I could, I had chosen not to ride the Manchester 100 this year, so I could concentrate on this event, would it be worth my while ? or would I disgrace myself ?

Hitting the climbs, sure I got passed, but I was either staying with or passing the majority of people, this ride was no “Blackpool” it was full of serious cyclists on serious bikes and I was there, mixing it with them, but better was still to come.

The views at the top of each of the 4 climbs were all equally STUNNING !

Throughout the day there was a small group of us that passed each other a few times, with 15 miles to go, we had all managed to fall in line,  there was 8 of us in this group and every single one of us thought the same “The climbs are over, lets GUN IT !”

and boy did we !

Almost every single one of the last 15 miles was done at an average of over 20 mph, we were all taking turns on the front, working for each other, this group of men, who didn’t know each other and hadn’t said anything, were like a TdF Break away, we were catching lone riders and spitting them out of the back of us like a Unrelenting herd of wolves and you know what ? ….I WAS PART OF THAT MACHINE………..ME !!!!!!

with 10 miles to go my thoughts were “Please don’t drop me”

with 5 to go it was “They wont drop me”

with 2 to go it was “I’m gonna out sprint the lot of them”

and I did, we all thanked each other for some superb riding at the end and with that, it was done.

Sadly I didn’t get a photo/video of the finish, I would have sold it to Eurosport if I had 🙂

But there is this “Staged” photo of me, at the end, crossing the line.

Now, the numbers, 4 hellish and long climbs, 4000ft of climbing, 55 miles,

Blackpool has less than 1700ft over 62 miles, last year I did that in 3hrs 30mins.

The 2011 Bruntwood Ellipse was done, by myself in 3hrs 25 Mins !!!!!!!!!!! and I can’t begin to tell you just how proud that makes me AND I feel physically like I have just done a much smaller ride AKA I feel fine, not tired, not sore, just happy 🙂

Bruntwood Ellipse Route (Garmin Connect)

See, it’s all about challenging YOURSELF, pushing YOURSELF and going beyond your “limits” because, the truth be told, we don’t have any limits, Hope is stronger than fear, don’t let the fear of being unable to do something hold back the hope of wanting to do it, because you CAN do it, whatever your 100% looks like, just make sure you give it !

This was a charity ride, as I have not reached my target of £500 for the Manchester to Blackpool yet, I’d like to ask anyone who wishes to donate to do so on the following link PLEASE.

Pride of Tameside 2011 – Award Winner (But Was It Me) !

17 09 2011

Friday 16th Sept 2011, The Pride of Tameside awards were held at the COMS/The Council House or Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium.

& Your’s truly was nominated for an award 🙂

While waiting for things to start, I got a little nervy and popped to find a loo, I saw an open door and knew it wasnt the toilet but it was a perfect place for a piccy

City Of Manchester Stadium

The award I was in for (Physical achiever of the year) was only 3rd on the list, so once the food was done, raffle tickets were sold and former Gymnast Craig Heap had given a rousing speech, then it was down to business pretty darn quick !

and, like any good story, this one has a happy ending

Physical achiever of the year, Gary Brennan (That

The evening was ended perfectly with me getting a chance to hold a Gold & Silver medal & Get a picture with Craig

I want my own medals now !

The Biggest Irony is that I’m from a small village in the middle of nowhere and that’s around 5 miles from where Craig is from !….Maybe it IS a small world !


Oooooon The 5 Day’s Of Christmas …..

10 09 2011

…..My bike gave to me….6 P U N C T U R E  S

Ok, it’s not Christmas and it wasnt just one bike that caused me some woes this week, but you get the idea.

On Tuesday alone I racked up 3 punctures, Thursday night I was a mile from home on my SS and I got a puncture, so I decided to pick up the bike and jog, I’d had enough of inner-tube changing at the road side and its been  while since I last jogged.

I made the cardinal school boy error once I was home, I changed the tube and blew it up WITHOUT checking the tyre…PSSSSSSSSST…..ARGH…..then I spent 10 mins checking the tyre and there was nothing in it, that  I could find anyway…..ohhh the joys :)….Would’nt change it for the world !

The only bike that didn’t give me a puncture was my MTB 🙂

My Olympic Dream, Picked up by the media:

This week I had a couple of photo shoots and , by the end of the week, had hit at least 4 newspapers (3 national ones)

One of the photo shoots

Click the Picture for one of the articles

The articles are pretty much as you would expect really, there are a few anomalies but on the whole its good and lets just hope that it helps in some way with my “Olympic Dream”

hopefully next week, I will have some good news in regards to an award im listed for and a race that I might be taking part in, so stay tuned.

If you a book publisher reading this, then get in touch, if I get to carry this torch, what a final chapter in the awesome story it will be to write and publish !

Thanks to Paul over on Fat Cyclist and the articles that hit the web, we have had around 7000 extra visitors in the last 2/3 days, so, I thought, as opposed to them having to go through all the site, that I’d make a video to sums things up with regard to me and my journey….As always, turn your sound on  !

9/11/11 – We must NEVER Forget !

Finally, 10 years later, we must NEVER FORGET !

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