A few months ago I set out my long term goals, with a five year view of the events and challenges I’d like to take on  – those which I considered to be my ‘A’ events. As we move in to December, I’m looking to the next year ahead and what 2020 looks like.

I’m sure, like many of you, I’ve been busy checking dates and booking events (or at least making sure I know when booking opens) for the year ahead. I’m well known now for my DIY challenges and I’m sure many will be reading this waiting to see what I’ve devised and what torture I’ll be putting myself through. As much as I don’t want to disappoint, the DIY has has to take a little bit of a back seat this year. That’s not to say I haven’t been looking at or being open to the opportunity to throw one or two (I’ve got an idea in planning)…so we’ll come back to those in another blog.

The calendar of events

  • RED January
    • RED means Run Every Day, but the focus of this challenge is not just on running but committing to being active for the 31 days of January. The event raises money for Mind, the mental healthy charity, and is why I’ve signed up for my second year running.
    • Find out more and sign up here – https://redtogether.co.uk/
  • 4 January – The Poor Student – 205km Audax
  • 3-4 April – TransEngland – 280km self supported race
    • TransEngland will be one of four ‘A’ races for the year, things that I’m actively training towards and want to perform well in, as such this will be an early yardstick as to where I am for some of the bigger challenges to follow.
    • If I’ve got the capacity I may look to include one of both of the other Trans events;
      • 1-2 May – TransWales – 350km
      • 6-7 June -TransScotland – 700km
  • 8 July – London – Land’s End – London – 1026km Audax
    • A 1026km cycling event starting from Raynes Park, Wimbledon organised by the Kingston Wheelers which I’ll be aiming to complete within the 75hr window. 
    • This will be my final kit and nutrition test ahead of my A event of The Irish Ultra.
  • 23 August – The Irish Ultra
    • A 1100km ultra-endurance, solo cycling race to be completed within a 68hr time limit
  • September – Revolve24, Brands Hatch (Solo)
    • (Date TBC) – cycling for 24hours over a 3.9km circuit. Qualificaiton for Ride Across America requires completion of a minimum of 340 miles – so my personal goal for this event will be to aim for that target!

What’s changed?

Well, big (but unsurprising) news is that I didn’t make it through the ballot for the Virgin London Marathon…so April’s now free. As is May, as I completely misjudged how popular the London-Wales-London Audax event was – the entries opened at midnight and by the time i’d got up in the morning all the entries were full!

I had planned to take on the Ride the Trafalgar Way BRM audax in June, but this coincides with my daughters birthday, so I’ve subbed that out for the July LLEL event instead.

Lastly, I had planned to take on both Revolve24 (Team) and Redbull Timelaps (Solo), however on reflection I think this will be too much in a short period of time and take valuable time away from my family. As such I’ve decided to only look at Revolve24, entry permitting, and now take this on as a solo challenge – I’m hoping, however, to still help to organise at least one Spokes team entry and ride along side those guys!

2020 and beyond

So, 4 key cycling events for me next year – what will be a huge test, going from DIY events set to my own ability and pace to entering a world of racing others over some incredible distances. I’m particularly excited about the Irish Ultra – I’ve been to Belfast but not explored any further afield so the opportunity to take more of the country in in this way is very appealing (well, I may change my tune when I’m 500 miles in and in a world of pain).

Pain aside, I’m confident in my training so far – thanks for Pav and all the team at Spokes – and I know with their help and guidance I’ll get to the start line of these events in good shape, physically and mentally.

Beyond that I also made it through the ballot for London-Edinburgh-London a 1500km self-supported ride across the UK in August 2021.

Share your own goals

I’d love to hear what you guys have got planned for next year and beyond. What events are you training for or have signed up to? Maybe you’ve got an idea for a DIY challenge of your own.

Get in touch or comment below!

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