Reflections

This is typed from home whilst still in my smelly bike gear and drinking red wine! It was a great ride today (again) and it felt amazing to get closer to home turf (or tarmac).

Tess was my lead out girl and rode with me to Santon Bridge. We sang Abba songs along the shores of Wastwater which kept me going until I met Helen and Ken (fellow Ambleside AC members) who met me and rode the last section. It felt brilliant to be riding down the hill home. From there I was greeted by Richard from Cancercare.

 

I am sad that this challenge is over. It has exceeded what I wanted it to be. I hope too that it has achieved what I set out for it to do: develop a greater understanding of cancer, inspire people of all ages to get out there and do something they love and raise some money for charities that are so important to my family and those affected by cancer.

In many ways a challenge like this has parallels to my journey whilst I was very ill, being treated for cancer and in the early stages of recovery. I have always felt as though it has been a twisting road, sometimes travelled alone, sometimes with the support and friendship of others right by my side, always with others in the side lines and sending me love and thoughts from afar. I have grown closer to friends, made new ones, shared laughs, banter and stories. It has given me the space to step away from life’s hectic bustle to appreciate the simple things more- a game of bowls, swimming in clear lakes, a brew made by a person you love (argh, cringe!), playing frisbee, sunshine, a hot shower, reading stories at bed time to a small one, kindness of a stranger, a smile…

Although I have struggled with my eating at times and had a few unpleasant episodes it has been nothing compared to what some people face and it has made me realise what I am still capable of. My confidence has grown again through this adventure. What I have achieved is not amazing, it is what I have always loved and the support team that I have means that I have been able to embrace a ‘chosen challenge’ again. It is those people who face an ‘unchosen challenge’ that are incredible- they have no choice. The people undergoing harsh treatments, surgery, loss of a loved one, fear for one they love, especially if they are alone, have a large/ dependent family, live in a remote place, have other health conditions…

I am SO LUCKY in so many ways and this adventure proved that. I have an amazing team of family and friends who I need to thank.

B- my wonderful sister who has kept this blog updated and has interpreted my hand-writing at the end of the day and typed up my meandering thoughts.

Paul, Ava and Lou- for biking, running, walking, entertaining Tess and loaning us their motorhome. They have been totally amazing.

Maria- who biked with me for 3 days and tracked me down with a hand made banner.

Carrie- for climbing Ben Nevis and keeping us smiling.

Ben- for keeping me entertained, biking with me and loaning his driveway to us.

Hazel- for biking with me, keeping me smiling and sending positive vibes.

Britta- coming up Scafell Pike with us, exercising Tess (!) and generally been a great smiley, lovely friend.

Jo W- being a great biking partner and making me laugh

Richard- for getting me through some long bike days by sitting on his wheel and mucking in with us all

Rachel S- for keeping me chatting, playing Araf and keeping me company on a long bike day

Darren, Nellie and Alison Fishwick- being amazing hosts

Dave B- for providing top road support

Astrid- for a massage on the most needed day and some good chat

Lindsay and girls- the best water melon chunks ever, support and smiles (plus another great home made banner)

Sharon and children- great walking, talking and playing on our final summit

Helen Barnes and Ken Dacre – for meeting me to ride the last 15 miles and making it feel so special

To all of you who have read this, shared it, thought about it, sent messages and donations- thank you.

WHEELBASE- my bike kept going and my tops looked good!

LAKELAND TRAILS- for this blog and the tracker- you can no longer all track me!

PETE BLANDS- general support and selling tickets for my talks

ROHAN IN KESWICK- for a big donation

WILF’S- for providing a venue for my talks

However the BIG THANK YOU GOES TO MATT AND TESS…

Matt has been truly selfless this past 12 days, he has done everything in his powers to make this challenge happen and be successful. He is an amazing husband, dad and friend. Thank you.

Tess has been far more of an active part than I could have imagined and it has left me feeling excited about the adventures we can go on to have. I am so proud of her.

To me this is a beginning in a way and proved that there is life after cancer despite the life changing implications, I will never recover fully or get ‘over it’ but we will go on to have more adventures and enjoy life. There will always be a shadow- will it come back? Every niggle will not be treated in the same way and we cannot ever forget that Tess too may have the BRCA1 gene but  as my wonderful mother always said:

‘It’s not about the cards you’re dealt, but how you play the hand.’

Thank you for reading this and sharing my challenge.

Jane x

Day 11 – Scafell Climbed.

Day 11 – Monday 29th July. Final summit done.

Scafell climbed and done! A brilliant day out for the Reedy family, plus Britta, her dogs and the Jebb family. We were also met by Lou with some bubbly on the top. One of Matt’s friends, his wife and two others also came as one of the group has been inspired by this challenge. A great day!

Thank you to all who have been sending good wishes and thoughts today and throughout this. I’m very proud of my team. I will write more tomorrow – from home!!

Day 10 – People, Places, Passes.

Day 10 – Sunday 28th July. Ambleside to Wasdale.

Despite a rather groggy start to the day of palpitations and cramps due to a spoonful too much of cereal (my body’s way of letting me know its tired), it has been another AMAZING day.

Jo Waites (a fell running rival from my faster days) joined me for the ride. We set off anticipating a soaking but someone was smiling at us and we stayed dry. Ben joined us for the start; but I think Jo and I scared him off, or maybe it was Hardknott Pass. I haven’t ridden over the passes for quite a while but with a bit of ‘heave hoing’ we made it.

I love riding in Cumbria, especially when it is quiet and you get glimpses through the dragon’s breath like clouds. At Wasdale we met Matt and Tess, and Tess hopped on her bike to pedal along the shores of Wasdale. Reaching a bridge, a child waved us down – Livi Towe and family (close family friends) – for hugs and greetings. Another reminder of how lucky we are to make this challenge, and my journey this last few years, possible with smiles and happy memories.

We arrived at our campsite in time for a walk, play, and to prepare for tomorrow – SCAFELL PIKE. Bring it on….

Click below for  little snippet from Tess.

Tess talking about the challenge

An honour and a privilege! – Post from a supporter.

An honour and a privilege – by Darren Fishwick, provider of a haven in Coppull, Chorley. 
‘Traditionally I’ll browse the Fell Runners Facebook page a couple of times a day. I wouldn’t say I’m a ‘nosey parker’ – I’m just inquisitively drawn towards the comings and goings within the sport I dearly embrace. Occasionally a ‘post’ really grabs my attention, one such ‘post’ being: Pedal to the Peaks.
Jane Reedy is a runner with whom I’d exchange a courteous wave of acknowledgement as it’s considered rude to acknowledge a lady be means of a nod – so my late grandad once told me. Like many runners within the Fell community, Jane was someone I knew slightly – an acquaintance. Unfortunately, in time I’d heard on the grapevine that Jane was poorly. It wasn’t until recently – after reading about Jane’s Pedal to the Peaks challenge that the true extent of her brave battles with various life changing encounters came to light. My wife Alison and I were blown away by this incredible lady’s story.
I’m certainly no cyclist: yeah I have a push-bike, I bought it via a cycle to work scheme at a reasonably discounted price. That was over five years ago and I’ve still never arrived at work pedal driven – all told I’ve been on my bike maybe half a dozen times since it was purchased. The stats don’t lie, I’m evidently not much of a cyclist – but I do live on route of Jane’s challenge.
Various texts were exchanged – the outcome of which had us playing host on two separate occasions to Jane, Matt and Tess…aka The Reedy’s.
It’s been an honour and a privilege for us to be a small cog in Pedal to the Peaks. I no longer class Jane as an acquaintance, I’m proud to now call Jane Reedy a friend…along with Matt and Tess.
The Reedy’s – truly wonderful.
All the best Darren and Alison Fishwick
Ps – Nellie’s been looking for Tess.’
Darren & Alison Fishwick's house.

Day 9 – To the Lakeland Fells

Day 9 Saturday 27th July. Chorley to Ambleside – To the Lakeland Fells- 70 miles.          (Total mileage to date about 690 miles).

It was a steady start as my legs and body were rebelling a bit, i saw some rather appealing looking sheds, and started to wonder about having a kip! However after 20-30 minutes I got my legs back.

Darren showed us the way out of Coppull, tearing along like an unexercised whippet, despite claiming to not being a cyclist. Paul Cornforth was my star lead out guy today, and I did pretty much sit on his wheel for 70 miles (apart from when my wearying legs wouldn’t play on the hills).

Passing Preston hospital again I dropped off a flyer with my blog details on. It is three years since I finished radiotherapy there. Thoughts of patients there today made me out my tired legs into perspective. I also called by the oncology unit at Lancaster; the staff there saw a lot of me as I was so ill with the chemo initially.

From then it was heads down up the A6 before heading off to my usual riding territory of the Lyth Valley, lakeland views and Cumbrian rain. I love living here and I am so lucky to have this on my doorstep. The last few miles I was met by Matt and Tess – these bits where Tess has joined me have been the BEST. This challenge is not about me, it is about my family and being able to share it with them is is special.