"52 weeks" - The Blog

Jul 29, 2009 at 14:26
by John Lee  

52 weeks - My Journey to The Mega Avalanche

So I have decided to set myself a challenge – I am sure to some this may sound weird and to some of you just plain odd, but I am going to challenge myself for the next 52 weeks to Train hard physically, Mentally and Spiritually for competing in the Mega Avalanche 2010.

52 weeks - The Journey to Mega Avalanche 2010

I recently crashed pretty hard and my Brake lever gave me some beautiful stitches after disappearing into my thigh after a bad landing of a step down! I was inspired after this crash to pursue a dream I have had for a number of years.So I have decided to set myself a challenge – I am sure to some this may sound weird and to some of you just plain odd, but I am going to challenge myself for the next 52 weeks to Train hard physically, Mentally and Spiritually for competing in the Mega Avalanche 2010.

Specific Aims

To Train and work hard for 52 weeks so I am able to compete in the 2010 Mega Avalanche at a competent level of fitness.

Create a weekly Blog and 52 week Video Documentary showing how I am preparing for this challenge in all aspects of my life

Make some new friends along the way and perhaps obtain some shop or company sponsorship support in what I am attempting.

Raise £1000 for the Charity organization – A21 - http://www.thea21campaign.org/index.php/en/home

Raise £1000 for the Charity organization – AUDACIOUS - http://www.liveaudacious.com/

Not neglect my Family, Church, Band, Friends and other commitments while striving to reach this Goal

My background

In 1990 I began riding at Nantmawr Quarry with a group of friends – We had a lot of fun but it quickly developed into a venue for Races and Paul Hinton master classes. Around us developed a playground with free unlimited access to all locals!

In 1994 I began racing for Pearce cycles and supported by Orange, Continental and max pro grips – after a couple of 2nd places at Tatton Park in Manchester. I then raced until 1999 in local and national races attempting to make a career from the sport in all disciplines XC, DH and Dual Slalom – I was never the best nationally but I was always in and around the top ten and training harder every year for my age class.

In 1999 in my winter training I became the Midlands Cyclo-cross champion – My first ever overall series win on any type of bike! I had felt the winter training had prepared me well for the 1999 season – but I dint realize it would be my last!

In the summer of 1999 I would crash on a Large Dirt Jump and injure myself to the point of Fear of returning to the sport – I had 2 Hair line fractures through all of my vertebrae, Bruised heart, lungs and abdominals, several small pieces of bone broke off in my eyebrow and the rear of my skull and a few other things to boot.

In 2008 I bought a bike for my wife and I, 4 weeks in – they were stolen and our insurance replaced them - I then decided to buy a DH bike, but after a scam artist called Skindog – He robbed me of £650 off a purchase of a stinky via Pinkbike classifieds – my return to the sport seemed to move further away

In 2009 I am now the owner of some awesome Rigs thanks to some blessings and hard work, and it’s time to get ripping!

At Present

Life is good, but tough at the minute. But good stuff, I am married to my amazing wife Julia and I have an awesome son called Elijah who is 15mths old. I work as a youth pastor and In September I will become a house dad and freelance youth worker and evangelist.

I have not trained since 1999 and I am currently very unfit!

My embarrassing stats at present are a ridiculous - 15stone in weight , 38/40 inch waist and I wear XL T shirts!


I am beginning my Journey with zero sponsors using a 2003 Patriot, 2004 P1 and a 1997 Kona Hahanna – I am sure gear may die or need upgrading so I will use what I can get and afford!

So what happens next!

I start my training tomorrow! I will update this thread weekly with my progress and Training Diary and every Sunday I will upload the Next section of the 52 weeks documentary!

First Video section for “52 weeks” will be available this Sunday on my profile!
Must Read This Week


  • + 3
 I'm reading this thinking, hang on, I know this guy. Good luck mate.


PS did you not go to Glasgow and get you money back of that student scum bag scam artist??? I'd still be up for a trip to see him if you haven't.....
  • + 3

Looking for some good Mega training? If your ever free give me a shout as i'll be over Cannock Chase and Clent Hills over the Autumn and Winter months come rain or shine.


  • + 3
 good on you mate, good luck on your training and getting back to fitness. if you can get back on a bike after that amount of adversity you'll do well at the Mega. all the best.
  • + 3
 Hi mike - lol - no the police took all the deatils about the cam and nothing ever came of it! £650 is a scary amount oif cash to be scammed on, but i imagine many more have suffered the same fate
  • + 3
 all the best mate your going to love the mega.... take my advice and hammer the old xc! llangdegla is perfect aim to be sprinting the black run in your full face and you should be sorted Helmet
  • + 5
 Woooot! Midlands represent haha. I'm happy my Patriot went to a good home.
  • + 3
 Best of luck to you!
  • + 4
 Good luck to you and remember to keep the riding and training fun.
  • + 3
 i hope that guy skindog rots in hell
  • + 2
 good luck mate, i think its great that youv'e got back on a bike after all thats happened to you. dont worry too much about the xl t-shirt as i know some great riders that size or bigger.
  • + 1
 hi have done the mega the last 2 years,its a great week and i am sure you will have lots of fun.
the best advice i could give you is fitness & ride a bike you are comftable with over long durations. rest up the day before the qualifier.
good luck I may be doing it next year, I only just managed to scrape through it limping this year.
thanks dave
  • + 5
 Oh my God - Im on the front page of Pinkbike! Agghhhh! Cherrs everyone!
  • + 3
 Good for you!! I always enjoy reading stories of people who overcome their fears/accidents to do what they ultimately love.
Life is short, set goals and realize them!!
  • + 3
 Great idea...hope it all goes well! PS Dont see many young clergy nowerdays!
  • + 2
 From what I hear about the mega this year spend your time training on paved trails with little or no technical features and just get your fitness tip top
  • + 2
 if you need a place to stay check my chalet out www.chaletribot.com we are a bike and ski specialist chalet!!,, if i don't see you good luck...sounds like a great idea!!!
  • + 3
 Best of luck! If u fail,stand back up. Wish u good riding.
  • + 3
 Good luck mate, a group of us are thinking of entering as well.
  • + 2
 Best of luck to you! Your determination is admirable.
  • + 1
 Thanks for all your support - week 1 blog and video will be uploaded tommorow evening
  • + 2
 by the way, hunt down the bastard who scammed you.
  • + 3
 good luck mate!!
  • + 2
 I'm pretty excited to follow his progress.
  • + 1
 Good luck!

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