3.1 kilos

So that’s the year 2018 started as I plan to go on.

Firstly don’t worry I don’t either plan or expect the weight loss to stay at 3.1 kilos a week! However it is still a happy start to trying to get back closer to the 90kg mark.

I’ve managed to log almost everything in MyFitnessPal and weighing portions out has reminded me that I’d let portion control get all over the place.

So this morning the scales read:

126.3kg with scales that connect to the internet I don’t have to remember my weight and then get it wrong!

Where will we be next week for week 2?

One of the next plans is to knock out my Diet Coke habit, when I can and should drink plain tap (or water cooler) water as firstly it will be cheaper and secondly I’ve seen studies on sweeteners still causing insulin spikes and also gassy drinks causing the feeling of hunger.

Posted in Diet | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Oh Oyster got better

It’s the end of December time for me to renew my zones 1 – 5 travel card. Firstly ouch I don’t like seeing how much I pay in one go, even if work do give me an interest free loan to help.

What I did like though was no more of this you must tell us where you want to pick up your ticket and it will be ready tomorrow, but a much simpler make a journey and you’ll pick it up on your way. Not only no having to chose location, but also that will be ready to happen in 30 minutes.

I might be on the train, but as I’ve got a season ticket I can never be arsed to queue for the reader on the over bridge exit at Charing Cross so never touch in at the start of my trip to save on incomplete journeys.

As long as they don’t make touching in and out compulsory for season ticket holders I’ll stay a happy and efficient bunny.

Of course buying my ticket just before a fare increase means I end up paying the 2017 fares for most of 2018.

Posted in Technology, Train, Travel, Tube | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

World Toughest Mudder


Yes I know I need too write more often…. Let me get back into the habit of blogging from the train.

Anyway World’s Toughest Mudder

It’s a 25 and a half hour event for crazy people who don’t find a standard tough mudder or one of the 8 hour toughest events hard enough.

Mike why on earth did you go you couldn’t do that? I went as pit crew and looked after mainly people I’ve never met before in my life with the Orphan Tent.

Why’s it not just 24 hours? They get some time to finish a last lap if they start just before the 24 hours in up.

This year (2017) it was in Las Vegas, now I’ve wanted to go to America for quiet some time and the fact it was Vegas I found was pretty awesome.

On the way home we flew over the Grand Cannon (thank you Delta Pilot for telling me to look)


This is where we stayed. It was cheap and cheerful, but it worked just fine. No point in paying for a plush hotel if that’s not why you’re going!

Then speaking of being cheap thanks to my three planes route. I did end up with one of these….


Delayed Baggage leaflet

But we went for some emergency shopping at Target and I didn’t have to stay stinky for too long. Next to Target there happened to be a shoe discount type store and I even found some $20 dollar trainers. It was annoying, but not the end of the world. Vegas never shuts so it was all just part of the fun.

Cliff Jumping



Not something I took part in myself, but on Thursday there was the cliff jumping. I struggled with the terrain on the way back down away from the cliff jump. As I was with a bunch of fellow Tough Mudders it didn’t take long for people I didn’t even know to come and give me a hand on the way down.

Event Weekend

I’m going to say this started on Friday with fetching of the bibs.


There was also buying of a pit crew t-shirt to be done in the merchandise shop once I had my bib. There was also a meal at one of the big hotels with a buffet. It really was awesome.

Saturday as we offered to give one of our fellow UK mudders who was running a lift to the site we got their nice and early. Despite us trying to pick her up from the back of the hotel she was staying in with her being at the front. (Sorry Renee)

Then it was spend a very long time in the desert. I was so glad my case and therefore my P20 sunscreen had made it by this time! As me and the desert was a brave move.


The start

Look at all those clean white bibs, you can tell that’s the start!

Then once they started it was basically time to start looking after people. Speaking on looking after people it was a very pleasant surprise to find Merrell were looking after me with some trainers. I was volunteering at the oprhan tent as looking after just one runner was never going to be enough for me. Got to thank Traci and her crew for making all of us very welcome to help her.


They have basically turned into my work shoes these days! Thanks! They were also pretty awesome at helping provide us with some tent cover, and along with the sunscreen it was them who made it possible for me to spend so long in the desert.

I did have an hour nap. Thanks to Renee being kind enough to let me borrow her tent for an hour, but otherwise it was staying awake for a very long time in the desert!

Sunday we got back to the motel and the cleaners came fairly soon after us, and as we were so tired we’d not though to use the do not disturb door hanger…

Then it’s all a blur.

I do know I managed to fit in some shopping to keep my sister happy. Sephora and peeps seems to be the answer to that.

Now the annoying bit…

I’ve doen Vegas now, but next year WTM moves to Atlanta hence looks like I’m probably going back.



Posted in OCR, Plane, tough mudder, Travel, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tough Mudder South West

Number 8 is missing

So after last time out in Yorkshire (yes, I’ve failed to blog about it, but will do a delayed blog once some video is hopefully released). In summary for Yorkshire taking someone in a wheelchair round the course shows just how awesome other mudders are!

Number 9 – aka South West

I’m not complaining as it saved me some of a drive, but I think South West should be a little more South West than Badminton.


So Saturday as I was volunteering. I was on Blockness Monster for the day and it was EXTRA monster this weekend as it had been dug deep to it was harder to push on the block to make it spin. That said I’ve seen many people in the tougher waves manage it single handed so harder, but not impossible and I got over on the Sunday when I ran.

Due to the course layout once people started coming they kept coming until the sweep vehicle got to us, so there was no rest for us.


Once we were done here we went to help with a wee queue that had formed on hold your wood, and with some awesome MVP team work without even talking to each other we soon had that queue sorted.

We had a bit of a group curry feast (thanks Richard) in the evening, but I was in bed before 9 as I was just too shattered and wanted to be in a good state to run.


My highlight of the run has to be making the highlight photos… (twice)


The solo mudders are an awesome bunch that I run with sometimes, and was rocking one of their t-shirts this weekend, hence it was only right I jumped into this photo.

Then Tough Mudder has kindly provide me with another new facebook profile photo too…


I’ll have a normal one again some day, but probably no time soon!

It wasn’t quite the same as the last event and my next event is going to be very special for me when I get that 10x headband, so not my favourite event of the year, but still bloody awesome in seeing how nice people can be to each other!


Argh I hate sorting my kit after a TM weekend, but it is mainly done now.

Making the weekend better still, I had a service booked in on my car today and Audi kindly wash and hoover it for you with a service…. I might book more services after events!



Posted in OCR, tough mudder | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Tough Mudder Norddeutschland

Getting there

Where best to start than an early hours ferry on Friday morning, I was back to allowing myself plenty of fudge factor time after my nightmare of just making the cut off in Dublin.

Then is was the long drive on the continent with a tiny bit of France some Belgium then the Netherlands a loads of Germany, but nearly all on the same road.

We ended getting to motel 24h Hannover minutes before the next bunch turned up. They had flown into Hannover and hired a car.


We went on a walk to hunt down the local Aldi and missed it by turning left too soon. Thanks to Google Maps for pointing us back in the right direction and also to the EU for making roaming a lot more sensible cost wise.

We decided to go buy some proper food and took the two cars to a local steak house. I had ribs and a jacket potato at 13 Euros it was the first time in ages that a plate of food had defeated me. During the meal we did one airport run in each car I was most impressed with how easy it was made to pick someone up from Hannover Airport!


Race day

We got up at a sensible time and headed to McDonalds for breakfast. I had to have a croissant as never had one of them in McDonald’s before.

Then it was about an hours drive to the venue. Parking was easy then it was time for sun glasses and party hats. Oh and a shot of Jäger before we started.


We got some before we started photos and this is about what we looked like at the beginning.


As Jamie was being filmed we ended up at the front of the warm up pen. We managed to get in a happy Birthday to Gary too, but with most of our wave joining in this time.

I'd still got my hat on for kiss of mud….


I was very impressed with the MVPs on the course a large number of who had switched to English when they saw/heard us coming. Then it wasn’t only the MVPs who did this I had a good few conversations with German Mudders on the course too.

We needed another shot at the half way point.


I loved the amount of water on this course, especially the lake at near the end to swim across as it did get most of the mud off saving me the need of the rinse station.

Also worth a mention are the course snacks I really loved the pick up biscuits. Sponsorship works as this is actually a full sized one I got in France on my way home.


We did make it to the end….


The evening after

Once we got back we all wanted a proper warm shower…. I learnt her that I needed some form of scrubbing implement for the shower as I had to baby wipe the mud off even after said shower. It didn’t help that the hotel had fixed head showers.

We’d decided to head into Hannover and without any planning for this learnt the motel had a tram stop not too far away so off on a German tram adventure we went.

We found somewhere selling Gyros “kebabs” and between the nine of us almost emptied the beer fridge.

Then we found the Irish Bar where I had one last drink before home time.

The drive home

One of the reasons I didn’t stay out too late was setting a 6 am alarm for Sunday morning and not wanting to be over the drink drive limit the morning after.

The roads were beautifully empty on the way home, until somewhere just after the French border but as we got closer to the stationary traffic ahead the car sat nav got us off the motorway to avoid the queue. This also turned into a bonus as we got to shop in a French supermarket.


Wil Chung who ran with us has updated his blog.

Posted in Car, OCR, tough mudder, Travel | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Tough Mudder Ireland

Getting there

Due to it costing so much more if  Stuart, Charli and I went on Friday and came back Sunday we had to chose a Saturday early hours crossing.

Once Charli has fed us in Manchester we headed to Wales and went to the warmest pub in the world with a bit of walking round Llandudno to.

I did find it easier than I expected to get some shut eye on a ferry couch. Once in Ireland we then used the M3 (toll road) to get our arses to the event site. I missed the yellow signs that I am used to for miles out of the event, but Audi Sat Nav with an online search worked well. They were still checking volunteers in when we got there so all good. (Don’t think I scared Stuart or Charli too much with my driving.)


Stuart headed off to do his own multi lapping thing, whilst Charli and I got assigned our obstacles. We happened to both be put in the same zone with a zone leader who was greatful to have some MVPs with experience. Our zone leader also drove us round his zone so we knew exactly what should be going on in his area before we started.


I had Decare Dental Insurance Ireland sponsoring my obstacle (Kiss of Mud) so with two of them taking photos and two medics it wasn’t too dull between waves. This worked in our favour when we ran on Sunday as they took some photos of us going through and a team photo too.

Once the last waves were through we went to help elsewhere. I ended up dragging a wheely bin up a hill as the level of rubbish was getting quite epic.


The campsite we’d been recommended by Jacinta was awesome they sent a text when we’d not turned up on Friday to check all was well. When I went to pay the balance they didn’t want the extra euros as the deposit was 50% and we had missed one night.

Went and took my worlds smallest BBQ and large  tools and were social whilst we cooked. The fish slice has a bottle opener built in proper BBQ tools if I do say so myself!



So after taking a bit longer to get up than we wanted we missed the first wave, but I got to “run” with a very decent bunch of people.


I’ve lost most of my left foot big toe nail so had upgraded my shoes to some speed cross 4s, very comfortable and felt secure even in the sucky mud parts of the course. No major  issues on the course and my lungs were happy for a puff on my inhaler on the way round. Having Jamie with us was a constant inspiration all the way round he might have less legs than most of us, but he sure isn’t a moaner or a quitter!

Getting home

So after we’d “ran” on Sunday it started to spit with rain so it was time to make a move back to Dublin. After telling the car to avoid toll roads we went on a very pain free trip back to Dublin for less euros than the way there. In Dublin we found the golden arches of McDonalds and a pub that served Guinness. I stole a sip of Charli’s half pint to check I still didn’t like it, but stuck to diet coke as I was driving anyway.

So the most stressful part of the trip for me was we didn’t realise how late it got when we went to a local tesco and got to the port 30 minutes before sailing with the cut off being 30 minutes before sailing. We were the last car on the boat (okay a van came on after us, but I don’t want to dry that one again)



Posted in Car, Fitness, OCR, tough mudder, Travel | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Tough mudder number 5

So I’ve got my second yellow headband.

Yellow Headband (Number 5)


Before I got my headband it as a day of Volunteering with my Tough Mudder IMG_1457partner in crime Charli. No I’m not trying to strangle her, just wanting to make sure that headband that is on my wrist was in the photo. Just a silly game some of us TM legionnaires like to play.

We had a good laugh with our water safety team on the creek crusade, even if one of us was over the other side of the creek most of the day. We did get moved round, but three volunteers meant that we had a turn each on the far side.

I managed to take a photo of a butterfly for the MVP wildlife photography competition. Not that I’ve worked out how to enter it yet, but our butterfly was in orange.



Anyway enough of volunteering on Saturday… Sunday was go for a run day.


It started off as just Charli and me, but we soon picked up the rest of our motley crew! I wasn’t wheezing as bad as last time, but I should probably still go and ask the doctor if i’m broken as really struggling to run without wheezing at the moment. I’ve been trying anti histamine before asking the doctor.

Pauline introduced us to a new technique for kiss of mud and it appears one of the photographers got a nice synchronised shot of Charli and myself testing it out.


Then it was also awesome to go and play in the creek we’d volunteered on the day before.


Yes we’re just mucking about in the water…. We’re meant to be going the same way as everyone else, but Charli has been leading a sing song and we’d been chatting to one of the TMHQ staff and posing for photos.

We’ve got to love Tim for bringing a camera with him that was up to the task of coming round with us!

Also I’ve got the most awesome beanie I’ve seen… my fellow MVP are jealous, but this year beanies are just for overnight events.


This reminds me I really shout write a post about the previous weekend…. I’ll do that some time this week and then publish it with an old date to confuse you all.

Thanks again to Charli, Tim, Pauline and Jason for making this one a fun one, and yet again proving how awesome the TM family is.





Posted in Fitness, OCR, tough mudder | Tagged , , | Leave a comment