When I turned 60 (in 2015), I realised that I was no longer middle aged and, therefore, no longer a MAMIL. Not being prepared to give up either the cycling or the lycra, I decided to embrace being an OMIL – an Old Man In Lycra.

In the years that I’d had cycling as my main hobby and sport, I completed the 2013 Etape du Tour and in 2015 did L’Eroica in Tuscany and joined the Club des Cinglés du Mont-Ventoux – with ascents of the Giant of Provence by each of the three routes in a day (Eroica and Cingles Du Mont Ventoux).

Along the way I did the Wiggle Dragon Ride (Gran Fondo) plus other sportives and, much earlier, ran the London Marathon (sub 4 hours) in 1998 and 1999.

July 2017 saw the utter, glorious, madness of a successful ‘everesting’ by bike in the Alps – 282 km and 8912 metres of climbing in an elapsed 22.25 hours – it’s covered in the blog (here).

In July 2018 I rode solo and unsupported from Caen (on the Normandy coast) to the alps – about 550miles (880km) in 84 hours.

Having promised my wife no crazy solo challenges in 2019, I signed up for the Rotterdam Marathon on 7 April 2019. I was running with our younger son so, however crazy, it wasn’t a solo challenge! It was very enjoyable and went pretty well – he broke the 4 hour barrier (which was the main purpose of the trip) and I finished in 4h 11min.

For my 65th year in 2020 I signed up for an ultra marathon (50km – 31 miles) along the Ridgeway. It was postponed until July 2021 so I ran my first ultra at the age of 66. It went pretty well – completed safely and enjoyed.

I enjoyed it sufficiently to run the 100km version of the race in July 2022 – that was extremely hard on a very hot day, but another thing crossed off the list of challenges.

I completed a triathlon in September 2021 – just a sprint distance but it had an open water swim (750m) and, even in a pool, I swim adequately, at best. I did the same event in May 2022 – I’m still not much of a swimmer but I enjoy triathlons so for the next challenge I signed up for an Olympic distance race in September 2022 (now cancelled as the organisers went bust … perhaps next year?).

In the meantime, towards the end of 2022 I took on the 100 push-up challenge – I completed it with 105 push-ups in one go in early 2023. Next is a DIY chin-up challenge.

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