There was a real chill in the air whilst cycling to work this morning ❄️ I like the winter months but the thought of cold, dark mornings is making me want to hibernate 🦔 Dreaming of #vanlife and an ocean view this evening 😍
Oh my!!! How I love @annamcnuff's writing!! Her stories... I feel like I'm sitting around a fire and she's telling me all about her ridiculously cool life!! (When I say ridiculously cool- because it's all there - the bumps and the bruises and the brilliant-ness [yes, brilliant-ness])
Now, I really wanted to say something uber profound about life and it's lessons and how I'm going through a time of refocus, getting to know me, (trying to like me!!)... but, I think she says it all here!!
@annamcnuff - thank you so much for being so darned entertaining and totally insightful and, well, super intelligent/smart in the way you write. Really appreciate you sharing your adventures with us mere mortals!!
If you haven't read her books - The Pants of Perspective and now 50 Shades of the USA... Just do it!!! #awesome
A wrap up of pro-shots from the @goretextransalpinerun. A race of 255km with 16,000m of ascent across the alps. With 25% attrition in the Mixed Category, the ‘Ballahuligans’ were pleased to finish 12th. Anyone fancy it 2019? #stageracing#ultrarunning#adventuretime#girlsonhills
Yesterday I got my first taste of real Canada. My friend Melanie and I headed out to Kokanee Glacier Park, about an hour's drive away, to go hiking.
The trail wound it's way slowly up the hillside, taking us through pine forests, over cascading creeks and past incredible viewpoints.
As we got higher and higher, it felt like we were moving through the seasons. We left summer behind down at the bottom, saw the beautiful colours of autumn as we were on our way up, then found ourselves thrust into winter as we got up above the treeline. There was crunchy snow underfoot and the air was crisp and cold.
This was just an average Sunday. We did a 5 hour hike on a well trodden trail. It was easy to get to the park and free to enter.
What amazes me though, is that this is just ONE of a THOUSAND parks across British Columbia.
This was just the first one I've been to, and it was stunningly beautiful. I can't even imagine what else lies in store.
Nature is out there - we just need to go and find it!
A little bit of (hiking) paradise from when I walked the GR221 on Mallorca in May 🇪🇸👣
👆That's the short version for Instagram 😆 In reality this was the toughest day on the trail. I (half) slept (with massive anxiety) in a forest the night before, got lost in the woods several times in the morning (because no way markers), got on a really dangerous slope that had me crawling over rocks and bushes until I was so scared that I crawled all the way back and realised this can't be the trail, gladly met other people that were lost and everyone helped each other. The actual mountain ascent was still one of the scariest ones I have done. There was not a single water source to be found all day which I did not know beforehand, and civilisation was a good 25k away. Not ideal in the Spanish heat. I ended up walking on roads for hours and hours late in the afternoon in order to avoid another mountain I couldn't climb without water. Looong 12 hour day! The next town awaited me with expensive hotel prices, and you have to bite the bullet because you're too exhausted to sleep outside again. My body was still dead the next day and I had to give myself a rest day, but very much enjoyed the cute little village Estellencs I was in. And when your body had the rest it needed, you're fine again and just keep going on..
👆Somewhere between Sant Elm and Estellencs. Still one of my favourite views on the trail (hardship and lots of memories included 😅)
🏃🏼♀️FASTPACKING 101 - WOMENS WORKSHOP 🏃🏼♀️
Love trail running and backpacking but never thought to combine them?
Join us in store with @adventurequeensuk to get the lowdown on fastpacking with workshops focused on fuelling and taking care of your body along with top tips for essential kit!
Thursday 4th October, 2018
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And that’s the SWCP done! It has been such a perfect day, one that I really didn’t want to end so I found myself dawdling along the beach, only saw one nudist (naturalist) which is not surprising 🙈. It’s a beautiful day for walking, but oh my that water was cold!! .
The cliffs were stunning this morning as I walked around Old Harry Rocks and the smile on my face grew and grew. It was really strange looking ahead to the coastline, but knowing I won’t be walking it. I guess 630 miles (about 1000km) of habit is hard to break 😊. .
Thank you 🙏 to everyone who has supported/housed/fed etc me on this crazy venture. Also thanks to the amazing @ordnancesurvey maps! I have now completed about 1450 official miles (more than 1550 according to my Garmin) this year, across 8 of the National Trails:Peddars/Norfolk Coast, Thames, Cotswolds, Hadrian’s Wall, Cleveland Way, Ridgeway, Glyndwr’s Way and now the South West Coast Path. It’s been difficult, emotional and incredible. I’ve had many (literal and metaphoric) highs and lows. I’ve done so much new stuff. I’d never thru-hiked, wild camped or done anything like this before. I didn’t do everything I wanted to, but I am so proud of my little feet for what they have achieved. .
McCoy out 🎤. .
Day 8 “Your possibilities are unlimited, but it all begins with the deliberate choice to think differently and then do differently”
I arrived back in London on the train from Amsterdam and at Kings Cross swapped my city bag for my backpack (told you I was organised) and got on another train to join the @adventurequeensuk on their autumn camp out. The group is set up with the aim of ‘delicately smashing down the barriers that prevent women from heading out on adventures’ and is made up of some of the most cool gals who have done all sorts of extraordinary things. It is this group that lets me believe in 6 months time I will be be able to cycle and camp from London to Lampedusa alone. The weather was fairly pants for it and as I lay there last night in my sleeping bag under a piece of tarp as it poured down with rain, it completely struck me how much your life and perspective can change in a few months when you simply open yourself up to new experiences. I couldn’t have become more of an advocate for getting outside, sleeping under the stars and taking on any form of adventure. If you were like me who was always more comfortable in a cocktail bars in heels over a bivvy bag then I would highly recommend joining a group like @adventurequeens to take the first step with ❤️ #sabbatical#day1or1day#adventurequeens
Great to work a proper grown-up ML day yesterday with @lupineadventure, escorting Liverpool uni students round the Lakes 10 raising money for Claire House Children's Hospice. With only two dropouts out of 50 participants, they did incredibly well over this demanding route: Buttermere to Langdale via Red Pike, High Stile, High Crag, Haystacks, Green Gable, Great Gable, Lingmell, Scafell Pike, Great End, Esk Pike and Bowfell. The majority finished in 13 hours walking off the final summit in the dark. A true epic over 29km with 2900m of ascent. .
What a morning running the trails up, around and over Penang Hill. A great event, and even greater to have finished! The heat & humidity will always get me and typically the hottest day here for a while! I knew I should’ve pushed myself harder at quite a few points, but I was enjoying the moment - and actually after months of injuries of one kind or another, everything pretty much felt ok - knee niggled a little but definitely back on track. A massive thank you as ever to the awesome marshals and volunteers, and huge kudos to those doing the 40k and 60k 🌿🏅🙌🏼
Couple of weeks ago we booked a last minute ferry, packed the bikes and the next morning went from Exeter ➡️ Dover, Calais ➡️ Loire valley in central France. 🇫🇷 First motorbike trip and first time riding abroad! Over 1600 miles and the only thing I regret was having to ride to some of the vineyards... 🚫🥂
It's getting to that time of year: colder weather, darker evenings, hot chocolate, warm blankets, woolly jumpers...🍁 ⠀
Because we're all getting into this Autumn mood, why not reflect this in your Weekend Challenge? Visit a woodland this weekend with the family and build a den - everyone can get involved! The den can be as simple or as complicated as you like.⠀
Isn't it great being a kid again, even if it's just for a day?
Staff from energy co. SSE joined me last Friday for a beach clean and paddle along the Adur in Shoreham. The beach was actually quite clean in the small section we did but we still collected two black sacks full in one hour. Spring tides and strong winds have likely taken a lot back into the sea sadly. Yesterday I returned to the same spot to paddle with fellow paddle pickup-er @meg_hoskin. Although the winds and tides were most definitely against us, it was great to catch up with a like minded soul. We battled the winds, pootled up to surfers, waded through mud then caught up some more over ice cream and coffee. No, it wasn’t the beautiful countryside, or the Pacific Ocean 🌊 but it was a great day. A reminder that adventures can be big or small and you can often find it on your doorstep! #kayakfun#shepaddles#paddlepickup#outdoorsgirls#adventurequeens#loveherwildly
That’s better. Always is, but it’s still not helped my motivation recently as I just hate the treadmill. BUT, in exactly 3 months I’ll be stepping off the plane, back into the cold so there’s no more excuses. Time to get back on it and back in shape as London 2019 will be here in no time 🇬🇧
Had a few days where everything felt like a battle. Like swimming upstream, through glue.
Didn't think I had enough energy or time to go to strongwoman training with @mighty_mayyah at the @commandotemple last night, but decided at the last minute to go. It was one of those small decisions that we all get at multiple points on a given day... Choose to be productive instead of giving up. It's so easy to say "Today has been a write-off, I'll just try to make tomorrow better," when there are still things you can do to make today better.
And of course I was not disappointed - came out feeling better about everything and even got a cheeky PB on the 60kg atlas stone. Felt on top of the world again. .
Shout out to my strongwoman friends who ALWAYS lift me up and make me laugh in training. Thanks for being legends!
Instagram is full of the perfect photos. Many of them staged (of which I am also guilty) but my favourites are most definitely the open and honest stories behind some of the non perfect photos.
These are some of my least favourite photos of me (there are many more) from that one time we went to the Lakes for a week of camping and practice out in the hills before heading off to Nepal for just short of a month.
Super early starts, searing heat and being very hangry (hungry and angry). Look at me. I'm not exactly slight and this was never more apparent than completing Striding Edge. You see, because of my chest size I can't see my feet without bending over slightly, this slows me down. Being too hot makes me really miserable. And feeling like I'm useless and holding people up really makes me feel 💩. We can laugh about it now but my language was disgusting and add a splash of tantrum (because I felt useless) that summed my day up.
But gentle words of encouragement and patience from the Dude was what got me around ( and not just on this route). Of course the euphoria of seeing the spectacular views all my troubles were forgotten.
So, as I sat at home today with a HUGE case of feeling sorry for myself (as I am suffering with whiplash), I made a decision. I'm going to be getting my sorry excuse for a backside out in the hills again. This will include munros but I certainly won't be earning bragging rights with times, I'm sure.
In a long winded kinda way I wanted to remind myself and you guys that not all adventures are glamorous. Not all photos are perfect and we all have our own struggles. I'm hoping to stop feeling sorry for myself very soon and get outside.
Goodbye Lanzarote 🇮🇨👋🏻🌴 you have been very ruddy lovely! It’s been a big week for brain and bod out here....
In between exploring trails with @komoot, I’ve been working on 2 new books (cripes!), finalising a plan for a new adventure in 2019 (double cripes!), thinking hard about how to keep growing @adventurequeensuk and I am WELL AND TRULY at that point where I’m pooping my pants and wondering whether I’ve bitten off more than I can chew 🤯😱🤷🏼♀️
But as my fave lady Elizabeth Gilbert says: ‘Dearest Fear: Creativity and I are about to go on a road trip together. I understand you’ll be joining us, because you always do.
... Apparently your job is to induce complete panic whenever I’m about to do anything interesting—and, may I say, you are superb at your job.
So by all means, keep doing your job, if you feel you must. But I will also be doing my job on this road trip, which is to work hard and stay focused.” Onwards we go 🙌🏻👊🏻🤸🏼♂️🤗