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The Ride

My journey started on the 31st March 2011 and, with a couple of winter breaks, finished on the 22nd August 2013.

The ride lasted 472 days and included 53 countries, 52 capitals, 22,076 miles/35,528 kilometres and 177,510 metres of ascent (or, in other words, 20 Everests).

Below is my route map.

I averaged 61 miles/98 kilometres per cycling day. My longest day was 131 miles/211 kilometres.

I got through 10 tyres, 4 back wheels, 5 chains, countless inner tubes, 8 pairs of cycling shorts, managed 5 completed qualifications (MA in Philosophy, Diploma in Physical Science, Diploma in Mathematics, Certificate in Astronomy and Planetary Science plus a business coaching thingy right at the beginning) and 75% of a soon-to-be-completed BSc in Mathematics.

When I finished I was 23 kg lighter than when I'd started (despite regaining weight in the winter breaks) and I'd taken 8,033 photographs, met loads of new friends, many of whom I still keep in touch with, and I will always have a million happy memories.

I believe there's no better way to travel long distance than by bicycle. You're going fast enough to cover considerable ground and yet slow enough to smell the flowers and say hello to the people you pass. The planet doesn't suffer while your heart benefits. Your unusualness (if you're away from a EuroVelo route) makes you a magnet for new friends, the exercise endorphins keep a smile on your face and at the end of a long day you can roar and gorge knowing you won't pile on the pounds.



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