The stats this week are looking like this:
...and a paddleboard plan in place, pending river flow being more manageable!
On that subject, it has been another week of challenging swimming as the heavy rain has caused the river flow to be over 400 (and to think that 2 weeks ago I thought 250 was fast!). As this video above shows, it really was a case of "I'm on a road to nowhere". That was definitely the song going around my head as I was giving it my all and realising that I was not moving away from the jetty. My swimming buddy's dog was looking on very concerned from the side I have to say.
To a lot of people it seems like madness to go to all that effort to swim for about 10 minutes at a time, but I have come to realise that these activities offer me a rare opportunity to see a 'real' person and speak to someone (not on screen) as much as anything else.
After sharing my recent swimming frustrations, I have been advised that I should use the calculations based on stroke rate that someone in an endless pool would use to indicate how far I would actually have swum. So there you go, averaging about 450-500m for each swim stint in 5deg water.
So with a total of 563km completed, I would now have passed through Muzo in Colombia, a town widely known as the world capital of emeralds for the mines containing the world's highest quality gems, and now be approaching Bogota, the country's capital.
It is a city of around eight million people, with cycle paths covering more than 360km of the city’s surface. Colombia’s capital pretty much invented the concept of ciclovia (cycle way). Cars are banned from 120km of city roads every Sunday morning, from 7am to 2pm, when two million city residents take to the streets to cycle, jog and roller blade. This sounds like exactly the kind of place I would love to be actually cycling in!
In honour of that fact, the closest I could come to this city experience was to be cycling around my home city, London, though which sadly even in lockdown can't quite replicate the Ciclovia experience! But it was great to be able to try being a tourist in my own city, and with a Colombian cycling friend, Giovanna being there, then I feel I gave it the cultural Latin American nod. (Though it did feel like we were playing a bizarre game of chicken as the horseguards were bearing down on our photo moment here!)
I'm pleased that I have managed to rehab my previously very niggly achilles to increase my running ever so slightly this week. At least running in the pouring rain isn't quite as miserable in cycling in it. The depressing weather has definitely been making all of this more of a challenge, but I am still trying to do as little of it indoors/on my turbo as possible, I think it is important to be 'out there'. And of course I am Scottish, so can never use the weather as an excuse really!
Then I think about two words which mean a lot to me: Tenacity and Resilience, and it is very timely that this week I launched the first in my new series of video interviews.
This is where I speak to a series of guests about what techniques they use in their professions and everyday lives to channel resilience and tenacity amongst other things.
I am passionate about the benefits that challenge can bring, and fascinated about how many areas of our lives it affects. This first interview is with my singing teacher, Matt Thompson, and there is a fascinating one coming up next week with a beekeeper!
And what better way to finish this week than to watch Scotland beat England in their Six Nations rugby game on Saturday! I think wearing my Doddie Weir top for my bike/run that day must have definitely brought some good luck!
Denise Yeats is an events director, communications consultant, endurance athlete and avid adventurer.