Friday, 8 February 2013

Key Tips for the Arctic!

So this morning I have been told off for not updating this blog.  Rightly so.  Not that I have been sitting on my backside since the last blog entry, indeed my backside has been subject to squats,  one leg side raises, (courtesy of Kim’s Saturday morning brilliant torture …sorry, core sessions),   lunges,  weighted presses,   and a lot of kicking by certain individuals (you know who you are)  who knew I could do that last 20 minutes of sprinting  when my legs and lungs protested  they couldn’t.  They were right, and their voices shall follow me to the Arctic for those moments when I absolutely can’t…. but know I will have to.

So what have we been doing since the last blog?  Well, between Col and I we have clocked up  tens of thousands of meters swimming,  hundreds of miles running, 100’s of tonnes of weight lifting,  cycling, cross training and pulling tyres in an attempt to kid ourselves into believing  that we are fit .  As we are now 10 days away there’s not much more we can do on the fitness stakes though - it is what it is.  So our attention has moved to kit and mental  preparation and after reading the tips and competences  of Arctic Trekking  I’m still wondering  what I’ve let myself in for.  Top tip for keeping warm “ put duvet on and run……”,    best  of the list though,  “don’t get sh*t on the shovel – you need it to cut water”.  As Confucius  said  What you do not want done to yourself, do not do to others.” Good advice as there is only one shovel.

Col has been doing a sterling job keeping our facebook page up to date,  and we have both been badgering, cajoling, pleading  and downright bullying anybody we know to sponsor us.  It seems to have worked , and we are extremely grateful for all the donations, and of course the obligatory advice and  helpful comments we have received such as “pack extra toilet rolls and sudocream”, and  “don’t eat yellow snow”.  We will take heed.

Training this weekend on the critical skill of erecting a tent – quickly – and without putting that multi-purpose shovel through the fabric……

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Nearly there....a progress update.

In just over a month we will be on our way to Norway, so I thought an update was in order.

Speaking for myself training and preparation is going well. I have most if not all of the kit I need, including the elusive Bridgedale Summit knee high socks which are apparently the footwear equivalent of rocking-horse shit, I'm sure other socks would suffice, however I used the Bridgedales last time I was in Norway, they served me very well and I had no problems with my feet. I finally tracked them down to Global Adventurer in Forest Row.

The other bit of kit I was determined to source was a Vapour Barrier Liner for my sleeping bag. Last time out I was forced to use a bog-standard, orange plastic survival bag, which was absolutely horrendous to sleep in. This time I've managed to source a Rab VBL from a nice man on UK Climbing.

Training too, is going well. Since October I've really knuckled under and have been in the gym a lot, so much so that one of the comedians I work with has changed my phone number to the extension in the gym. According to Runkeeper I've cycled, cross-trained, rowed and run nearly 300kms and lifted a cumulative weight of over 66 tons. I have to say I'm feeling pretty damn good and am certainly fitter than I was when I last travelled in Norway.

Fran too, has been hard at it and puts my mediocre training to shame, she has been posting her progress to our Just Giving page, why not take a look and donate while you're there.

Our fundraising efforts have been thrown into sharp relief by the SusSAR team SSV (Search Support Vehicle) failing its MOT last week. Although the problems have been fixed and its back on the road, the failure shows that the team desperately need a new vehicle from which to mount our searches and that the money we raise will be going to a very good cause.

Thanks for reading.