28th May 2015
Day 1: 28th May 2015. Weight: 19st 1lb. Weather: Overcast, windy but a hint of sun
Yesterday I received an unexpected phone call. “Hello is that Councillor Davis-Johnston? It’s Glenys Kett here from Cumbria Community Foundation.” My first official call as a newly elected councillor is from Cumbria Community Foundation, I wonder what they want!? “Have you heard of the Rivers Ride 2015? We were wondering whether you would like to take part?”
I am Adrian, I’m a 32 year old father of one with an arthritic spine, borderline obesity and a penchant for all things Bryson’s who tends to avoid organised torture events for charity. I am also passionate about my community and have a great admiration of the work that Cumbria Community Foundation does. My answer to Glenys’ question was an immediate “Yes of course” followed by a “how long is the bike ride?” The answer; 35, 55 or 75 miles.
Now I have many years ago done a long distance bike ride, but this was pretty flat, was over 3 days and I was probably about 2 stone lighter. With all these considerations taken into account, I have decided to plumb for the 55 mile challenge and have also roped in some great support from my Dad, Paul, who is also going to do the challenge with me. My new year’s resolution was to lose weight and get fit, and on the 1st January 2015 I was 20 stone and quickly lost two stone. Since then I have put on another stone, so this challenge is a great way to refocus my efforts onto my overall aim. Interestingly, the route of the Rivers Ride will take in most of my Allerdale Borough Council ward of Derwent Valley and I look forward to getting to know the roads intimately on my bike. As you can see from the photo, when I was leafleting the ward in the election, the hills took it out of me, I hope wheeled transport will be a help!!
My primary motivation however is to support the work of Cumbria Community Foundation. I can remember vividly how the Foundation has supported our county in times of hardship and need from the Foot and Mouth Crisis to the 2009 Cumbrian Floods which this bike ride commemorates, but for me it’s the day-to-day work of the Foundation that is the most inspiring, working with people of our county that need support, from young people to old people, from a variety of backgrounds. The work the Foundation does is inspiring, it isn’t just a body that hands out money, it is an organisation that epitomises Cumbrian culture – we look after each other and we look out for each other. I am proud to be a Cumbrian and I am proud to support the Foundation by putting in a little bit of work and getting my fat bum off the sofa and on the bike. I hope people will be equally inspired to join in or to sponsor me at www.justgiving.com/adrian-davis-johnston
After putting my name squarely in the frame I now have a bit of a plan to get myself motivated and get myself fundraising, but before all that there is one essential item of equipment I need – a bike!!
Wish me luck!