Wednesday, 25 February 2009


White skinned, skinny and unfit... With a burgeoning belly. That could be the usual description of this blog's scribe.

Looking at Darren's blog this evening I see there are 71 days to the next TGO Challenge. That's ten weeks in real money. This year, the omens are poor to say the least. Due to personal circumstances I have been out for only four walks with Lord Elpus since the new year year. Ordinarily, by now I would normally have had about ten walks down, coupled with an over-nighter somewhere like the Lakes.

Well - it is what it is. Knowing that the programme was likely to suffer, earlier in the year I tried an entirely unconventional approach; for me, that is.


I dug out and dusted off my old Canadian Airforce Exercise book. I gave myself a highly ambitious target of getting to the fitness level required of a 45-49 year old. Now being a white skinned skinny, unfit 53 year old I reckoned that should do it.

Bloody hell. It was hard! But after a month of straining, groaning and sweating each and every morning for the required eleven minutes, I have made it! And now - to push the envelope, I have started to visit the pool for a weekly dip as well. I think my build doesn't suit this swimming lark but I am giving it a bash. I am now up to 600m in half an hour in the 'dead slow' lane swimmers lanes.

So - if Lord Elpus and I have a particularly difficult river crossing I will be prepared.

Prepared, white skinned and with the usual burgeoning belly.


  1. You will find that in the next ten weeks this all comes together, and you're a lucky bugger too with the Challenge to look forward to. What more motivation do you need?

    I'm finding it difficult to feel sorry for you right now as all I can do is dream of the Challenge!

  2. What is this "exercise" of which you speak? Does it involve something more strenuous than walking? :-)

  3. Have no fear Alan too much is made of this training nonsense! I found that the 1987 Challenge was good training for the 1988 one!

  4. Walking is the best exercise for walking.

  5. I too grunt sweat and strain for eleven minutes every morning - but I manage to get out of bed eventually.

    I'll try dusting books and pushing envelopes too, if you think it will help:-)

  6. I'm starting to take this TGO Challenge training seriously too. In fact, I'm just off down to Boozebusters for a bottle of Bannock Creek Station thingy...
    Its a long walk, and uphill on the way back.

  7. TDA, WP, Derek, Baz, Lord Elpus, & Sir Milton Keynes.

    The mornings are all about exercise. The evenings are all about excess.

    Have taken to taking an evening stroll down to the Black Bridge to marvel at the power of the Great Grey Green Greasy Limpopo River with a fine cigar.

    Phil - Miss W has a key for those handcuffs.

    Milton Keynes: That cheap plonk is full of anti-freeze - so you won't need that expensive down sleeping bag on the Chally - Save weight Sir! Drink more Stannock Creek Bacon!

  8. Think about getting a dog, walking it 3 times a day certainly keeps you fit for walking. I have always found that it putting the loaded sack on for the first time is the biggest shock so make sure you get some practice before the Challenge. Indeed you could combine two parts of your fitness programmes by wearing your fully loaded sack while swimming, this method may solve all your problems!
    Mr. G.


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