2011 In Review – It’s Been A Kind, but Not Perfect Year.

26 12 2011

Kind is well kinda underplaying 2011 if I am to be honest.

I sit here, writing this, recalling what 2010 was like at the same time last year, climate change experts tell us that we are doomed to years of frozen tundra-like winters but as early as November 2010 I was on my MTB with studded tyres and 6 layers of clothes.

Cube Ltd Team 2011 in the SNOW !

Cube Ltd Team 2011 in the SNOW !

In 2011 I have not yet used my MTB (Other than when first new) let alone installed the studded tyres, in fact I sit here typing looking at my Single Speed with it’s 23’mm tyres thinking that I’m pretty glad we missed out on the forecasters Minus 25 degree temps …… If tomorrow it snows and drops to -25 then please feel free to blame me.


The day after I wrote this in draft, I awoke to find this

Luckily it was gone from the roads by the next commute, so the record of not needing tyres any wider than 23mm this winter is in tact.

The Good:

Where to start….Well

My speeds have shot up this year, I am averaging a smudge over 16Mph for the whole year.

My Manchester to Blackpool time was the quickest ever  time on a bicycle for me (At the time) and I was able to suffer through that riding on the front for the majority of the time.

Manchester to Blackpool 2011 Gaz in christie kit

I have now hit my goal weight and STUCK to or just under but never over it for well over 6 months.

I was able to challenge myself on the Bruntwood Ellipse, something to this day that is the proudest moment on a bike for me, over a route I NEVER thought I’d make.

bruntwood ellipse 2011

Bruntwood Ellipse 2011 Finish Line

I have won further awards in 2011 for my services to weight loss and attempting to use my web presence to inspire and help as many other  people as I can.

Ironic !

Starting with applying for my provisional license in late October I not only passed the Theory in 2011 but also the practical test, meaning 7 weeks later I have a full driving license, it was pretty challenging but I’m so very proud of what I achieved.

I have brought to the fore my eating disorder and I initially tackled it head on, proving to myself that I’m not scared any more, I have however put in on the back burner while I waited for professional help, after all , I have no idea what I’m doing :0)

That help started a couple of weeks ago & now I am pretty confident I’m gonna kill it, when I do I will be able to fuel my cyclists body correctly ….When that finally happens ……Sit back and watch me FLY !

Yet despire all the above, I noticed a post where I said I felt like I was having a Cavendsish-style start to the year, where I had a couple of scrapes, got caught jumping a red light at a left hand turn and forgetting to unclip, despite such a torrid time, I picked myself up and achieved so much, so the message here, is NEVER give up.

I finally did some motivational speaking too in 2011 and plan much more in 2012.

I was qualified as a British Cycling “Sky Ride” Ride Leader , helping British Cycling achieve their goal of a million more cyclists.


There were also some smaller, more personal goals achieved this year, like Riding Chunal 3 times in 2 weeks, keeping up with a Pro-cyclists on my Single Speed, Riding Roller coasters, Raising over £300 for the Christie Cancer Hospital.

AND In the last days of commuting before finishing for the year, I managed  to equal my fastest time ever @ an average of 19.4 Mph, it was cold, SOAKING WET

and what made it even more amazing ? I was on my Single Speed

The Bad

Well, now I have listed the good, the bad REALLY doesn’t seem that bad at all.

Of course there was HUGE disappointment when I was not selected to carry the 2012 Olympic Torch , like I said at the time though, I have won more on this journey by getting my life back and inspiring others every single day than to worry about running with a torch for 10 mins, sure it would have been the perfect chapter to end my weight loss story before my new journey of beating an eating disorder starts but it doesn’t matter , if I had to chose the Torch or helping inspire people here daily , then I chose here.

The other “Bad” of 2011 was missing out on a chance to reclaim my Pride of Manchester trophy at the Manchester BE Proud awards, I received many nominations , however I failed to make the short list, there is always 2012 to get that trophy back.

Finally something that wasn’t “Bad” but a bit of a downer , was the flame war created on you tube in response to this video


My blog is here as a beacon to light the way for fatties who , like I used to be, simply need to see what can be achieved, just because your super morbid obese doesn’t mean you cant workout (Though as always, seek medical advice first).

It’s there to celebrate life, the achievements , however small, that we concur, life is short, we need to celebrate it, embrace it and most of all, LIVE IT!

Where Next In 2012:

Well, if we believe the Mayans then the world will end in 2012, so, just in case, I have some super big idea for this, possibly, the last year you an I are on this mortal coil 🙂

I have rejoined the “Helmet Camera” brigade, I have started treatment for my eating disorder, I have my application primed for a new job,I intend to get out there and do plenty more motivational speaking,  I’m in talks with a national TV channel and there are ongoing negations to get my skin removed, added to that I have a few offers of sponsorship for this blog, im not jumping into it, Im picking the one(s) that’s RIGHT for me, this blog and its readers , oh  and I have a few races as well as charity rides planned for the year ahead, also I’m hoping to, once again, ride with a pro cyclist, this time for more than a few miles, PHEW , it’s gonna be a busy one.


As in the mean time, I intend to take a much deserved rest, for all of you who ate too much over Christmas and need a little inspiration then sit back, sound ON and watch this video.




5 responses

30 12 2011

Well done! Thank you for sharing your story. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading of your exploits and occasional challenges. 2011 was certainly a year of reaping the benefits of your hard work – congratulations! When you trundled in to your LBS and asked to buy a bike, could you ever have imagined where it would take you? Best of luck to you in 2012 and I look forward to more inspirational stories.

30 12 2011

Thanks Steve

It’s much appreciated – Its been an utter pleasure to consider you an acquaintance this year

While I have your attention I wanted to say that you too are one inspirational dude !!!

15 01 2012

I so want to ride bicycle but my family… 😦

15 01 2012

I so want to ride bicycle but my family… 😦 I wrote a blog about this you can check out.

15 01 2012

While it might be dangerous ( and it is to be honest )

The best thing you can do my friend is advise them of the health benefits , Taft you will be healthier , happier and Alice for longer if you use a bicycle :0)

Good luck

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