Statistics from the ride

So, I finished the ride 3 days ago. Since then its been a period of rest and relaxation although the meaning of relaxation has yet to get through to Seb. If i’m having a quiet 5 minutes in the pool, he’ll appear from no where to shouts of “having a nice relax are we Dad” followed by a bombing in the pool – Peter Kay – John Smith beer advert style.

Its given me time to have a look at some of the stats from the ride which may be interesting to some of you. I believe that the final distance is correct but I’m sure there are bits that I have missed because I forgot to press start on the Garmin. My Garmin problems and frustrations have been well documented so some of the data is from Nicks device. So here we go:

Distance covered:         2687km’s – a little less than I anticipated

Meters climbed:            25,528m – 1,000m short of climbing Mount Everest 3 times over. Surprisingly, the biggest single day was actually the trip to Lisbon where the accumulated meters were 1,889m.

Calories burnt:              122,895

Longest day:                 184km – 10 hours and 2 minutes riding!

Top speed:                    64.9 km/ph

Visits to the website:     7,903  and from the following countries:

UK, Portugal, Spain, USA, Switzerland, UAE, Netherlands, Sweden, Germany, Italy, Slovakia, France, Greece, New Zealand, Czech Republic, Turkey, Morocco, Ireland, Saudi Arabia, Iceland, Poland, Belgium and Malta.

I’m sure that other stats will become available but an interesting first reflection.

Next post will be lessons learnt!

JON

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Day 27 – Silves to Balaia

So the final day of my challenge had arrived. A deliberately short day so that the boys and H could see me arrive (the landed late on the 31st). 

We only had about 35km to do by the handicap of a hangover and a 3am finish made it seem a lot longer. We both consumed a full bottle of water in about the first 15 minutes. It was a strange feeling knowing that the adventure/challenge was coming to an end. I’ve been lucky to go so many different places and see how many of our European neighbours live in reality. I also need to return to reality – but before I do, I turned to Garmin for one final time for the route in to Barbs. It didn’t let us down picking out mainly quiet lanes as we got ever closer. In Ferrairas we were passed by a local cyclist who we chatted to a traffic lights. We were discussing how good Foia was. 

We stopped for a quick coffee before pressing on to Barbs. 

As we arrived down the track I saw Seb first. They’d made a bamboo arch for us to cycle through and a red and white tape for us to burst through. The flags of the 4 countries were on display and a Heineken was on hand to reach the parts that other beers could reach ( if I remember the saying correctly). 

Aunty Barb – who administered the wine that set me off in this course in the first place, H, Lou, Seb, Dad, Emma (my Portuguese interpreter who I called upon when I was stuck) and Mia – my youngest follower – were all there. 

A fitting end to the ride. 

Donations now stand at £7,222 against my goal of £10,000. Thanks to everyone who has supported me and donated generously. I will get round to thanking you all if I haven’t done so already. 

If you haven’t donated yet – don’t be shy – click on the following link. Don’t put it off until another day – do it now before something else gets in the way. CLICK HERE TO DONATE

I’ll write a few more blogs on my thoughts and reflections and to also share some stats with you over the next few days. I’ll share two stats with you now though. My clothes are hanging off me. I left England weighing about 92.5kgs. No surprise really – I’ve cycled every day for the last 27 days apart from 2 rest days. My shape has changed quite a bit. So what do I weigh now? ……91kgs. 1.5 kgs is all I’ve lost. Can’t bloody well believe it!!!

The 2nd stat – one that I didn’t want to tempt fate with until now is that I’ve not had a single puncture!!!

Don’t forget the donations CLICK HERE TO DONATE

Many thanks

JON

Day 26 Aljezur to Silves

The early night did us good but the legs were stiff as we set off. Thankfully the morning fog had started to lift as we made our way down the N120 again into Aljezur itself. Nick needed Ibufren  gel for a troublesome knee so we stopped at a pharmacy. I dived into the coffee shop at the Bomberios (fire station) and had a great coffee. Something called a Pingadoo – either that or I was asking for something ridiculous every time we stopped yesterday. 

As soon as we got back on the bikes the hill started. It spiked straight up from the off getting up to 10% gradient.  It stayed like that winding up the hill for about 10 kms. It was hot too and the previous nights beers soon came dripping out. At the top of the first steep bit my clothes were  ringing wet. It was a lovely steep climb and you got some great views – and it was quiet with very few cars. After 10km we had climbed about 600m elevation. The route then seemed to flatten a wee bit as we went round the hill. We got the first glimpses of the more sunny south coast and then started the gradual uphill climb to Monchique. We had lunch and the two cans of Sumol and set off for the summit at Foia. It’s about 8-9kms further on and is relentless. As I searched for more gears that weren’t there I looked down at the Garmin and the gradient reached 13% – I suspect it went above that. 

Nicks Ibufren had clearly been purchased from a man called Lance. It must have had a special ingredient or two as he shot up to Foia like a rat up a drain pipe. I maintained the tourist pace but eventually we were both at the top. It’s the highest point in the Algarve at around 900 m. You can see the south coast and the towns and cities clearly but the west coast still had a cloak of mist around it. Looking West you could see the hills that we had come over. It’s a really pretty place – well with a visit. The views are stunning and the apple cake that I had on the top was first class. 

The descent was fast. About an hour up and less than 10 minutes back down to Monchique. We went out the opposite way to we came in up into the hills the other side. We then turned off right towards Silves into what is some of the nicest countryside that I’ve seen south of Porto. Quiet countryside – picture postcard stuff and probably less than 20kms from the coast but a side of the Algarve that most visitors to the Algarve never see. It was a great ride towards Silves. 

At Silves we headed straight into the first bar that we came to. 8 bottles went in world record pace as we reflected on one of the best days since leaving Porto. Just a brilliant, classic day in the saddle and an appropriate final full day. The beer and the cycling made us hungry so after a snooze we went into Silves. Nothing much to shout about in Silves apart from a medieval castle which appears to attract the crowds at various times of the year. All very nice – but when you’ve got to eat who cares about the castle!! We had a good meal and then chatted about the last week – recalling the meals and the hotels. We couldn’t remember all the coffee stops – there were just too many. There was quite a lot to talk and slur about but we managed to push out the conversation out until about 3 am, helped along for about 30 minutes by watching the worst karaoke singers in the world. We played pool for a bit – but the balls kept moving. Clearly It was time for bed and as a consequence we had a late start to the morning and our departure from Silves. 

It was a great days cycling and we phoned Pedro to thank him – thankfully not at 3 am though.