152 – Riding a jolly long way for the WordPress community with Dan Maby and Carole Olinger

Interview – Riding a jolly long way for the WordPress community with Dan Maby and Carole Olinger

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So this is a little closer to home than any interview I think that I’ve ever done. That’s because I’m both the interviewer and guest at the same time!

You may or may not know that about six months ago I started another podcast called The #PressForward podcast. It’s related to WordPress, but not in the way that The WP Builds Podcast is. You see the #PressForward podcast is about the people who make up the WordPress community, and more specifically about the struggles that they have had.

WP and UP is the organisation behind that podcast. They are a non-profit with a mission to support the WordPress community. This could be support with their work, their skills, their mental or physical health. If you need help, you can get in touch with them and get it, free of charge. As soon as I heard about WP and UP, I wanted to be involved and thus the #PressForward podcast was born.

Now, you can imagine that running a global charity is not only hard, it’s not cheap either. In fact it’s really rather costly, as you can find out here. It cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to make this happen, and make it happen in a way that is meaningful and sustainable.

Want to get your product or service on our 'viewed quite a lot' Black Friday Page? Fill out the form...

Fast forward to WordCamp Europe in 2019. It was in Berlin and a few of us from WP and UP went along to try to make some noise and get people talking about what we’re trying to do. At about that time a chap called Marcel Bootsman decided that he was going to raise some money for charity by walking 500 miles from his home to the location of the WordCamp. This got quite a bit of attention. I even recorded a podcast episode with him.

Well that got us thinking… What if we could do something like that? What if we could get some attention for the charity? So we decided to ride bikes!

Now this is not a small bike ride. This is an alarmingly huge bike ride… 3,000km of bike riding. It’s the daddy! You can see the route here. It’s somewhat scary. I really mean that, I’m honestly scared about this!

The whole point though is to demonstrate that little changes can make a big difference in your life, and today’s guests, Dan Maby and Carole Olinger, like me are not athletes, we’re just normal folk. But we’ve decided to do this and go through all of the myriad things that we need to in order to make it happen. And it’s rather a lot.

Aside from (in my case) exercising for the first time in years, there’s the route to plan, bikes to buy, sponsors to talk to, fellow riders to bring onboard, cars to hire, hotels to book, media to talk to, money to raise, websites to build… I could go on! It’s honestly quite a lot… and that’s what this podcast episode is about. It’s about why we all decided to do it, how we’re getting on doing it and what we hope to achieve.

I really hope that at the end of it you feel motivated to make a donation to the project. We’re going to need your help!

Mentioned in this episode:

The route that we’re riding…!



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Transcript (if available)

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Welcome to the WP Builds podcast bringing you the latest news from the WordPress Community now welcome your hosts. David Waumsley and Nathan Wrigley.
Hello there and welcome to this the WP Builds podcast. We've managed to reach episode 152 now and it's entitled riding a jolly long way for the WordPress Community with Dan Maby and Carol Olinger. It was published on Thursday the 31st of October 2019, which is Halloween. My name is Nathan Wrigley from picture and word dot Co dot uk - a small web development agency based in the north of England and because it's an interview I shan't be having my chats with David Waumsley today never fear though. He shall be back. Probably next week just a couple of things to talk about before we get stuck into the interview.
Perhaps the most important of them this time around is WP Builds.com /black that's going to be a Black Friday page full of all the links. I'm curating them all so that you don't have to worry about whether or not you've missed something. I'm going to try and put apps that you everything that I come across up there.
It's going to be filterable and searchable. You can use those options already. So for example, if you want to know which ones are at 30% or which ones are in the hosting category and so on. It's all on that page. I'll be updating it as and when things come in but quite a surprise to me doing this is that.
Halloween is a real thing for WP products and services. There's absolutely loads of stuff. So go and check that out right now actually because it feels to me like black Friday's got a bit of a rival. So that's WP Builds.com /black go check that out. It will be constantly updated. So yeah, I would recommend that you get yourself to that page and book Market.
The other thing to say is WP Builds.com forward slash subscribe. If you go to that page, there's two forms at the top the. Gray one is just going to let you know when we've got. Podcast and the Monday news updates coming out but the blue one in the run-up to Black Friday might be a good form to fill out because if you fill that out, I'm just going to send you a very quick plain text email as soon as I hear about a product or deal.
And so yeah that's going to be really helpful. You can just tell from the title whether or not it's going to be of interest to you. Just throw it in the recycle bin on that page. You can also subscribe to us on your favorite podcast player. Join our Facebook group of over. 2,300. WordPress has it's very friendly I'd say it's possibly the most friendly face book group.
I've been in it's absolutely wonderful. So get yourself in there as well. Another page Dimension would be WP Builds dot-com forward slash deals. That's our regular deals page go check that out because there might be something on there as well and WP Builds.com forward slash advertised. If you would like to advertise your product or service on the wp builds podcast and get it in front of a WordPress specific audience a bit like these guys.
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It's the perfect fit for you or your agency go to WP page builder framework.com today. Just a quick shout-out to Paul Lacey. I don't know if you listen to the WP Builds news, but we put out the news first thing in the morning on a Monday and then we do a live version with various people in the Facebook group in the YouTube channel and we go through the news this week.
I was away from my office. And so Paul Lacey took the rat took the took the reins and I'm very grateful to him and would like to express my gratitude and thanks to the guests who came on this week as well and. And coped with the the sort of slight variance from the normal routine. Okay, let's get stuck into today's podcast.
This is really interesting for me because not only am I the guest I am the interviewer because I'm actually in it, which is really strange. It's all about WP and UP head to project. It's a three thousand kilometer, which is nearly 2,000 mile bike ride from Berlin to Portugal taking place next year.
Myself done maybe in Kerala longer going to be sweating it out on bikes over a 30-day period of time next year and in this podcast, you're going to find out why we're doing it how we're doing. And how we getting along with the plans and preparations that we're making it to be perfectly honest. The whole thing is just full of interest.
It's got me really intrigued and and scared by the same measure. So yeah go and check it out and I hope that at the end of it you are you feel able perhaps to support the head to project in some way. Hello there, welcome to the wp builds podcast. We've got an interview for you today. Thanks for sticking around today.
I'm joined by two people who over the last. Well in one case in Dan Maby's case I've got to know him very well over the last probably couple of years in Carol hollingers case. I'll probably got to know her quite well over the last couple of months. And the reason for that is because we have in a moment of Madness we have decided to do a do a bike ride.
Now. I've mentioned this in alluded to this a couple of times and we'll get stuck into that. But before that I'm just going to say hi, Dan. hello and hi Carol. Hi Nathan. Hi Dan. Let's go. Let's do the history of this show. We a couple of couple of months ago while it's probably more than a couple of months ago now Dan KET hatched this plan to cycle where.
Damn So the plan was to still the plan is to cycle from Berlin in Germany. The 2019 were kept Europe venue this trial right the way across town to the. That's Porto in Portugal the 2020 venue for Work Camp Europe, which is a total of 3,000 kilometers. Actually, I wrote a little over 3,000 kilometers.
Let's let's do that in Miles as well. What is that in Miles roughly stealing little under 2000 miles. Okay, if you if you go to now, let's get this right if you go to head to dot-org /root and I'm guessing that's spelt in the sense of route. Not so T then you will find the roots. And if you're anything like me you'll probably just look at it and you think Adam app, you know, it's a map of look a little line on it isn't.
Fun, but then when you actually start to sort of zoom out a little bit you notice that entire countries are encompassed in this map. Why? Why are we doing it Carol? What on Earth? Is it all about? You never saw this to me as like Madness. So this is I'm starting to get worried here. Um, yeah. So yeah, of course we doing that because we already an amazing product WP and UP team and we want to raise awareness for mental and in this case also physical have because they're in the end.
There's nothing more important than your health, right and. Yeah, so we have been working on this route for quite a long time. It's not so easy because we we try to avoid the very very evil hikes and like the Tour de France. I mean, I mean we are quite fit but we're not like always.
There was a little irony in here. Yeah, but actually when I'm at the moment, I am looking right at the root and I see that we are nicely dividing France into so you're really gonna. We really going to divide France in two parts and really see a lot of it. Yeah, so this idea didn't come in sort of Splendid isolation.
Did it the if we were to cast our minds back I spoke about this quite a lot in the win the WordPress and use that I do there was a chap. Cold muscle boatsman have I got his surname right? Because it's spelt boot be oot in the English pronunciation, but I think it's boatsman have I got that right it Sportsman boss, man.
Okay. So yeah, I'm not mistaken here. Yeah. Well he. Decided that he was going to walk from his hometown to the astral hotel in Berlin. And so I suppose did that set the groundwork. Is that what got you thinking about this stuff? It did. Yes. Yeah. I'm at a conversation with Marcel that were kept Europe and spoke arms about his sister Epic Journey, which was just incredible.
I mean was he comes with its seven hundred and eighteen kilometers walking from his from his hometown to the venue and just. They recognize the need we so WPF is a non-profit. It's a registered charity and we need to be able to raise funds. We need to go to sustain the charity. So we need to look for ways to do that and it's look for unique and unusual interesting ways to create exposure of both our message and of course Bill to try and raise some funds.
So we we had a brainstorming session at wordcamp Europe as a team. And this concept of traveling from one word Camp to another came to light and we looked at it. We looked at the distance and obviously was at the time it was a very roughly at about 3,000 kilometers and we thought yes, we can we can do this.
How can we do this? Well, let's look at those jump on a bike on an aeroplane. Yes. So yeah, it was born out of that and it's not there's no kind of element of competition or one option that one-upmanship or anything like that hits case of this is we were inspired by what Marcelo done for donate WC and we actually conversation.
I had a conversation with him prior to announcing the head to projects because we wanted to make sure that this wasn't in competition or wasn't conflicting with any other plans or projects that he had coming up for next year as well. And he was very very supportive. There's also been some discussion around him potentially joining us on the route as well at some point.
Mmm. So the the route has been devised on a whole load of cycling related apps. This is a whole world new world to me. I didn't realize things like this existed as far as I was concerned. There was Google Maps and you know Apple Maps and that was about it, but it turns out. There's a there's a whole kind of like sea of different apps that we've been exploring and we've kind of ended up using two we've ended up using something called ride.
Is it ride with or ride for GPS? Ride with right with GPS and there's another one called kamut. And what you do is you put your starting point in and you put your ending destination in okay that all good so far and then it spits out a route and it tells you how long it is and so on and so forth, but but that.
Isn't really where that Journey ended because we while I say we I've done very little on this carol has done the vast majority of work on this Carol's had to spend a long time tweaking that route what with what have been the criteria to make the route suitable for what we're doing. So actually what I've been doing is of course checking on the on the on the pathways that we conclude was suggesting which was already pretty cool.
But there was still a way to improve that because we found out that there is. And bike Journey which starts actually from Norway and goes all across the band Europe to a Santiago de Compostela in Spain and they call it like the pilgrim root and this root is like specifically designed. I mean route is not designed for cyclists, but the suggested route.
Inside the 0 value 3 track is is really like the bus that you can actually do on a bike because it's not going to be like super super super hard differences in height and it's going to go it's going to pass along more cycling path. So. What we try to do is first adapt like a majority to this euroval three track starting from France to Santiago de Compostela, which will obviously also include the amazing Camino Francis, which goes from the front from the French border to Spain to Santiago de Compostela and this is like the most famous Pilgrim route.
On the world if I'm not mistaken here, so I think a lot of people have already heard about that and I always wanted to do that by walking and I never took the opportunity to do so. So now I'm going to do that by bike and really really looking forward to that because I think it's also going to be like a some spiritual experience.
So that was one. One part is the criteria and the other part of your sleeve because we are doing this. Inside of Wordpress community and photo WordPress Community is like checking. Where are there like communities near the root on the road where we could actually during our during our journey get in touch maybe participate at the meet up.
And of course getting more writers cyclists from the community involved. So if there is a local meet up somewhere and if we're going to pass nearby chances are higher that more word present. Uzi has are living there in in the area and wanting one want to join us like for for smaller part of the of the trip like for one day or maybe for three days.
So we will give you the opportunity to do so. Mmm. That's really nice the so let's ask everybody temporarily just to pause the the podcast and get yourself near a device go to head to dot-org. /kreut Ro Ute, then come back and press play again. And that way you'll have a you'll have a real insight into what we're going to talk about for the next few minutes.
So Carol or down it doesn't really matter. Who where are the where are the the changes that you made to try to get us in touch with the community as we ride past? Can you on the map? Are you able to solve? Point roughly obviously not with your mouse, but can you give us the names of the locations of places where you've you've diverted the route so that we have a maximum chance of of coinciding with other WordPress communities.
I think the major change that we did the original route wasn't going through the Netherlands. So and we absolutely need to do to be able to get in touch with the Dutch Community which is one of my favorites. And so we made the roost the route go through nijmegen and through Eindhoven. And then we are gonna gonna pass the Belgian border.
We going to go to through Antwerpen to Russells. And so I think this was like the major changes in the beginning of the route. So that would we would be we would be able to include the Netherlands as the six country on the road and through France. We made some minor changes to pass. Directly through the center of Paris, which is really going to be very interesting.
Yeah, and the good news is there are lots of cycling path. So I was very positively surprised because I wasn't expecting that. And we going to pass through Bordeaux. And yeah, and then we we were trying to find the possibility to to remove the very hilly Parts in the southern France going going to Spain so.
Yeah, it's tiny little part is has been deleted of from our route, but there is no way of making that a flat trailer and it's we need somebody to basically quickly whip up a tunnel going through the Pyrenees that we go we can't even recall. Yeah go make a call to action for that. So this is someone's yeah, let's do that.
Still not enough time. Yeah, so essentially the. Hopefully some of the places that Carol has mentioned, you know, if you're listening for many parts of the world near there. Maybe Dan you could take this one? What how do people how do people Express an interest? Let's say that they're interested in joining us for a short period of time on a bicycle.
How do they do that? Sure. So the the. They wonder if anybody's interested in joining us through the ride. We're setting up multiple ways individuals can get involved for now. We're asking people to register their interest in joining us. So if I go to head to head to dot-org /go their redirects to the to the page where people can register their interests register their details, and then we'll be in touch as we progress this to to discuss something what they have there.
Their expectations their their abilities and work with them to see how they can be part of this project because we really want to make sure that this encompasses include as many members of the community as we as we possibly can and get and get many many people involved. I mean to to put this into some some form of context.
If you look young we've mentioned already the Tour de France and we can bang that around a bit. And I mean that's the Tour de France is a three and a half thousand kilometer ride over 21 days. I believe it is that we're doing at the moment is 3200 kilometers, we've given ourselves 30 days, but actually five of those days are rest days.
So we're going to be on the bikes for 25 days to accomplish this 3200 kilometer ride, so. It's a big undertaking. There's a it's a big it's not a case of we could just simply jump on our bikes and off we go now. I'm certainly not a professional cyclist. I'm certainly not any kind of athlete. I haven't even been on a bike for 20-plus years up until about three months ago.
But what we're trying to do through this project is really demonstrate that these the a lot of small changes can positively impact us and positively impact our physical health, which obviously has a direct impact on our mental health. So as people look to join and register to be part of this project, we're asking that people want to get involved if they're happy to share their Journey as well and share their experiences and be able to share that that whole process from.
Registering as a potential ride earth right through to taking part and getting on the road with us because there's going to be a number of challenges that we have to face as we go through this project as a collective. So it's really quite important that we can would be we're prepared to to be open and honest about these things as we go through them.
I'm gonna be open. I'm almost I'm terrified. It's it is quite a thing though, isn't it? You know when you when you look at it on the map. The interesting thing was when we put it into the camo tap it varying it up handily Carol's been working on sort of dividing our three thousand kilometer route up into 25 more or less equal bits, and it's the realization that I think for me of the.
Of each of those equal bits and you suddenly see the raw number of in my case miles miles means something to me kilometers. I can't really get a hold of just because of what we use in the UK, but when you actually see the number of miles that that will need to do each day it is we are taking on something the like of which I've never done.
I'm not I'm not. I wouldn't even say I'm modestly fit. You know when this whole process began I would say I was suffering from middle-age spread too much time sitting in the chair not enough attention on my diet not enough attention on my physical activity and although I am nowhere near the point of being able to start and finish that route since we decided to do this over.
I don't know. What was it three months ago. We committed I think something like that and I have made. Quite a few changes. It's been an up-and-down experience. You know it I haven't been able to sustain my approach to to taking exercise in the way that I'd hoped because Normal Life got in the way but I've made changes I've lost weight.
I've adapted my diet. I'm getting more exercise than I ever had. What about you two? Well, this this is as I mentioned it's about these these little changes and trying to because obviously we will have our response up daily responsibilities to them we will have work to do we will have family there are many things that we have to maintain and really what we want to try and do here is demonstrate that actually making these small changes throughout our.
Daily routines without having too much of a big impact from a Time perspective really can make a change and I mean me similar to yourself. I've I've I've been doing a lot of small changes and in relation to my diet in relation to my exercise and I've been seeing some positive impacts.
Unfortunately. I I'm I've got a back injury at the moment. I actually got a. Fractured vertebrae which is preventing me from getting on the bike this stage, but it is prior to that there was definitely seeing massive changes massive improvements from making relatively small changes. You've been a keen cyclist for a while though.
Haven't you Carol? Is this something the like of which you feel ready to tackle tomorrow or you're gonna have to really step it up like me and done. Well, that's something like this well, I don't feel ready at all. Yeah, actually I started cycling only this summer. So like Dan I haven't been on a bike like 20 years in 20 years, and I just got back on the bike because I had an injury on my knee which would not allow me to run so I started running earlier this year.
So the interesting. Part of that. I don't believe in coincidences is that I had this desire and yeah this this this deep need inside of me to change something and to adapt and to go for a more healthy lifestyle already quite early this year. I started to make this adaptations. I started to become more active.
I had a trip to Iceland which was a hiking trip, which was amazing where I discovered what my body was able to do and also what my body was not able to do and what I wanted to improve so this already started way earlier for me this year and then when I heard about the amazing had to delicio project.
That was like, oh my God, I have to get involved into this because this just comes at the exact right moment for me. So at the moment, I went even further so sometimes I'm a bit like 100% or 0% So I tend to when I when I when I when I do change some things in my life, I tend to really get very focused on to that and to do more and more.
Certain moment. I changed my diet into ketogenic diet. So I'm on ketosis and I feel great. I am losing weight and I am having so much energy. Like I don't remember when I had so much energy before so this is amazing and works perfect for me. And of course I am doing a lot of bike training so I am.
I am going to do to complete this Challenge on my e-bike. I am not as mad as you too. What's an e-bike because I didn't know what that was. So anyway is actually a bike that has that has an engine as an assistant. So it has a battery and an engine that will actually multiply the the power that you will give that you will put into your bike by just pedaling and multiply this effort.
So depending on how much you are going to allow the engine to assist you. So but this stops at 25 kilometers per hour, so it's not like. You could speed on with the ebike and and having like end up in the speed that you would have with the motorcycle. So that's not the case. So it stops at 25 and you have to be able to careful on how you use it because the battery of course is not unlimited.
So if you want to give it a lot of a lot of assistance, you are not going to be able to do more than 20 or 30. Per charge and I really love that because we are living in a very very hilly area here and when I go told that I had to stop running for a while because of my knee injury. I yeah, I was I was really.
Desperate because I noticed all the positive effects that the physical exercise I started to do hard on my mental health. And when I go talk now it's over for a while. I really I was scared like to only to the next depressive episode because I felt like I was losing all my balance and my inner balance of course and then.
The physiotherapist told me like he said to me like a you could to biking because it's going to be excellent for your knee and I was like, I can't do that where I live is absolutely no way where I can do that because it would take me like six months of preparation to get on the together and bike and ride for 30 minutes because it's so super hilly and then.
I discovered ebike. So just like you met them. I didn't I didn't actually know what it is like when you before and I completely fell in love with it. So it's so some people might say this is cheating or whatsoever. But the thing is. If I wouldn't if I wouldn't have discovered two ebike, I wouldn't be on a bike at all.
Yeah, I wouldn't do that. I wouldn't I would have done nothing during my injury and I also wouldn't have been interested in the project because biking for me was always like that. No, not my thing. Yeah. Yeah. It's really interesting just to just to put. Put this into perspective. We'll talk more in a minute about the sort of way that we're actually planning to do it and how we're actually going about it.
But I'll just give you some little tiny window into what we've done so far. So as as a as a team WP op weave. We've done and I certainly have started to use a mobile phone app, which is called My Fitness Pal. Now, I'm not recommending this over anything else. It's just the one that we chose to use and it enables you to sort of scan the barcode of food that you're consuming if it comes in a packet if it doesn't come in a packet you can use their search and 99.
Times out of a hundred you'll find something relatively quickly and analyzing the food that we're consuming now in my case. This is proved to be a real Revelation this tiny little change and it gives you data about the the sort of the types of food that you should be eating and whether you're getting enough protein or carbohydrates turns out that.
Unbalanced my diet was okay. I was just eating far too much of everything and snacking fairly frequently. And so just this minor little change and it is a bit inconvenient and I've fell out of favor with it a couple of weeks ago. And now I'm now we're best friends again. I started having this week just by scanning the food.
And it tells you how many calories it all equals. I've suddenly reduced portion size and as a result over a six-week period I've lost well probably won't mean a lot to everybody but I've lost a stone which is 14 pounds simply by just observing what I'm eating with this app. So that's been incredible and I know Dan's been doing that as well if you found the same thing as it as it helped.
Yes, absolutely. I mean there's actually a lot of evidence to point towards just simply calorie counting will help you reduce weight just by the simple fact that you are actually watching your calories. Even if you're making you think you're making very little difference in terms of your touch.
There's a you're creating some accountability hunting around the the food and. Did you like the food here in taking what anarchism is real accountability as well? Because we this data is available to each of us about what the others writing. We have we have we have got a colleague pull smart who we've been meeting up with who hopefully going forward will be continuing to offer us advice and guidance about the right kind of things that we should be eating and physical exercise as well.
But it does it's amazing and the thing that had never occurred. Well not never occurred to me, but I've never done anything about it was it was just like oh goodness me that food that I thought was or wow. There's a lot of calories in that, you know, just things like when I have a bowl of cereal in the morning, I know I now actually weigh how much milk goes on whereas before it's just, you know, Chuck it on until.
Sometimes as you think that's it enough now I make sure I go for about a hundred and thirty grams of milk and carefully weigh it out and all these little things multiplied over the whole day and all of the consumption that you make in terms of food as has made a real difference now, we're not losing weight for the sake of losing weight.
We're losing weight so that we have less baggage. Cass around all week because if I can get down to my target weight, that's a lot of stuff that I don't have to cut around for 3,000 kilometers go mm 150 meters up uphill. We want to be carrying a little weight as possible at those those mountains.
Is that the that's the tote? That's the maximum height. We have a reaches. I thought we will get be going up a total of 2,100 2,000. Sorry 20 1500 meters. That sounds more like it was going to take so 21,000 vote by hitting it. We sound like we're talking about NASA now. It's putting things into low earth orbit.
Yeah, so there's that there's the sort of the the side of eating and I don't know Carol if you've got anything to add on that maybe you've always been good with your eating. Have you modified it recently? Yes. So with the ketogenic diet is its total change of what I what I used to eat. So I always had troubles like keeping my weight in order.
So I'm suffering from a chronic disease, which is called lipedema, which is. Which changes the the fat cells and the fat tissue and it's almost exclusively affects women. And so it makes like your fat tissue increase completely out of your control. So that's one thing that I that always. That I always ended up with more weight than I wanted to have.
But the more important side of this is that I didn't know about this for two decades. So then I always try to fight my body and I ended up having several Eating Disorders. So this is always something I have to have to keep in mind when I also and I'm adapting my diet. Because this is not something that the eating disorder is not something that is going to be cured at some point.
Like it's it's part of me and at some point it's going to be sleeping and at some point it's maybe going to try to come back and I have to be very aware of what I'm doing. So the recent changes is that I always wanted to try what the ketogenic diet could do for me because it seems to have like positive impacts also on my lipedema disease, so.
After the last 30 clip three, I had three weeks ago. I felt super motivated to give it a try like. Because I was motivated on like fighting against the disease and also doing something that could increase my energy level make me lose more weight for the for the head to project. And so this is actually the first time that I am actually tracking everything I eat and I do not know.
Because of the calories so I mean it's very very important. If you want to lose weight to know if you are in a deficit in a caloric deficit or not, I mean obviously but for me, it's very important that the macros are aligned to keep me in ketosis. So I have to be I have to make sure that at the end of the day I will have eaten like 70 to 75 percent of fat.
And then less than 5% of how do you say call needle carbs carbs in English? Yeah carbs and the rest is proteins. And so at the moment I'm tracking everything because I need to do to readapt and I need to get the feeling for for what I eat and if it's if it's right for ketosis or not, but it's just like you said Nathan when you start tracking and you.
You really you really get surprised and amazed about things that you thought that I would I would have not so much calories and then you find out like oh my God, I haven't been eating that all the time. And for for me, what is interesting is. As I'm eating so much fat fat. Obviously. It's very high in calories.
So ended up with relatively small plates in the beginning and my hat wasn't my mind wasn't able to process that like, oh my God. I mean, I know this is so much fat, but it looks so tiny. How can I how can I not. Be like super hungry after one hour, and then my had needed like one week to adapt so that I was able to feel into my body again and to actually find out if I am hungry or not hungry independent of what my hat thinks.
I am and that's very positive side effect. Like I really feel so besides of all the energy I have. I really feel like I'm connecting. To my body again in a different way because this is a change this is change in metabolism and. It's new and everything that is new helps me to reconnect with with my body in a healthy way.
It's amazing, isn't it? Like I said just the just the inspection of it the diet that I was eating has made a significant difference, but it's not just the the diet side of things. We've also you know, we're going to be on bikes. It's a very long time we've got to take a lot of a lot of time out over the next few months in order to.
Get all Fitness levels up. So I'll just run through what I'm doing currently. I have a of an exercise bike, which if you've ever watched any of the live news or the webinars are so sort of been loitering in the background and I'm trying to get on that and achieve a certain amount of Miles every few days that obviously is going to step up what's amazing to me is how long it does take to do the.
To do the number of miles and when we go out on the days, we're going to be on the on the bikes assuming we can keep the speed up a steady rate. Well eight nine possibly more hours a day just cycling and so trying to get my head around how I'm going to practice that much is interesting. But also I've been going out on my bike.
I ever really. Wonky old bike. I've got an old mountain bike that I got off eBay or something several years ago. And I also like you Carol live in a really hilly part of the world and essentially with wherever I go in any direction, I hit Hills and it's been amazingly interesting. To me to discover what Hills feel like on a bike and ha ha ha you could certainly feel them.
So it's hopefully I'm going to be able to allocate more hours. I'm probably going to have to do it in the in the weekends in the evenings and luckily my family of you know, they're supporting me giving me time out to do these kind of things. So yeah. What about you Dan? Yeah, I mean that that's one of the biggest challenges here to be honest is trying to try to find the time to get this to get the exercise in that's needed to accomplish this and yeah similar to yourself.
My long rides have been at weekends because I mean the longest to date 120 kilometers and that was a that was a nearly six hours six hours out on the out on the road. So it's a big chunk of the day taken to accomplish this so some of you I've got a static bike. So I make sure the time spent on that as well.
But whenever I can on my routine prior to prior to the back injury was first thing in the morning, I'd be out on the road bike every other day would get in at least an hour on the bike and then come back get into the office. Do I work at lunchtime on the evening and then get onto the static bike the days that I hadn't gone on to the road?
And I'm toxic mold on the static bike and then is that long weekend the weekend get the long ride in so there's a nice routine falling in place. But of course, I'm not other than other than that one long ride a week. I wasn't getting or not getting a huge great big rides in but it's all it's about.
Building up that that endurance level and continually working to get to a point where we feel we can spend 8 9 10 11 hours in the saddle when we get to the key on the road. It's interesting, isn't it? There's a whole ecosystem that I you know, if you're a cyclist, it will be second nature to you.
But there's there's massive networks of people doing bicycle related things and putting bicycle related content out and so Dan and I have been sharing. The global cycling networks videos and it's basically a YouTube channel where they they instruct you and they pretend like you're going up a hill and they've actually put people on bikes with GoPros and you follow the video and it tells you to crank up the difficulty level on your exercise bike for this many minutes and then you wind it down again and and it's amazing as a real real subculture of bicycling stuff.
I didn't know anything about. If anybody's interested in getting involved in in a bit of exercise with that where the static part of the gcn net worth of the global cycling network is an incredible place to start they just got so much content around this just think those those GoPros on the bikes that we are swimming around cycling across Europe.
Yeah. That's it that raises a question. Actually. Let's move on to that the sort of technology and the infrastructure involved first of all, It's 30 days and obviously 30 days at the the hope of very much is that we never spend the same night when we're actually on riding days in the same place.
Otherwise, something has gone. Calamitous Lee wrong. So where are we? Where are we sleeping? Where are we going to rest our heads at the end of these horrific lie long days. Well, this is a this entire project is a huge logistical concern. There's a lot involved in this and obstacles been doing an amazing job around the route so far enough as it is, there's a lot more to do as we go forward and the.
The intention is for us to be sleeping in RVs sleeping in campaigns as we travel across Europe are rest days with any luck provide. Depending on funding will have will see us in slightly better accommodation in terms of up and maybe hotel as opposed to an RV. But of course this all comes down to funding.
But a big a big issue around all of this is safety. And it's it's at the Forefront of every conversation that we're having. We need to ensure that we can we can move this body of people across Europe in the most Safe Way in the most as safe and appropriate way because we want to make sure that every person that starts out at a Berlin ends up in Porto.
Maybe a little bit more tired, but definitely in one piece. We need to make sure that there is no services around route planning. Obviously that's been a big concern making sure that we're not on major roads. We're not in any putting ourselves in any unnecessary danger at all. So course it then requires support vehicles to be with us.
So all of this then obviously lead onto leads into cost and then. There is a there is quite a substantial need in terms of finances to to support this. But of course it's a the is raising a very important issue within our space around the need for better physical health. Yeah, and in terms of like bikes and all that kind of stuff the actual menu shy.
Each person that so Carol is obviously going to be on an e-bike you and I are going to be on a suitably selected and hopefully fitted because another thing I didn't realize you could do you can have a bike kind of well, it's not bespoke, but they'll adjust everything so that it's in exactly the right position and fitted bike would that be the same for people that came along?
Is there an expectation that if somebody wish to join us that they would, you know, bring their own cycling equipment bike helmet Etc. Yes, yes. Oh, we're setting up multiple day multiple options for individuals to join us and that varies from a writing a single day with us right through to joining the full 30 days.
So it really depends on how that individual is joining us. Whether that whether it's a single day over there is multiple days. As to what level they need to have undertaken in terms of Readiness. And obviously we rate we highly recommend a bike fit for anybody that's getting involved in this project because it's it is important that we make sure that our bodies are suited at the machines that were using to accomplish.
This aren't causing any additional. Wear and tear will problems to our bodies particularly uncertainty within the 30 days then yes, a bike fit is absolutely necessary. But again, we can discuss that and then go through that process and support individuals on it and how to take that forward and how to accomplish at what will happen to WP and up the main WP and up.
When they when you are Carol and so on are on the bike ride because it's basically a whole month is your life as well. Not just W paying up but is your is your business taking a bit of a pause Carol is your you taking a complete month out or are you expecting to do things in the evening like log on and some way do other work?
So for me, it's it's going to be quite easy. So I am working on projects at the moment. So this is one of the projects I'm working on and as I decided already earlier this year. To go more slowly like to have some kind of sabbatical. I am gonna finish the projects that I am working on and then from mit's mid-march on I will just focus on had to like from the work part but also from the preparing myself, but so this is this is easy for me to do.
Yeah, because because I took some other decisions in my life before and that make me also have two resources, but I am also aware that this is not the case for everybody out there, but I. I took some decisions like I would say like starting five years ago, which would always put my own health in first place.
And that's where that's how I want to keep it. So that's what I'm doing. What about you done you taking time completely off for you of you? Well, I'll just give it some context. I've already lined somebody up to take over. Various aspects of my work whilst I'm away. I mean in my case, I've told clients.
I'm not going to be doing any new work during that time and people that are capable. I got to take over things like my website care plans and things like that. Yes, Emily. I mean, I'm very fortunate. I've got a I've got a team that we can stick can take on all of the work that we have in the pipeline.
So that's from going to from the agency's perspective of that will continue from the from WP naps perspective. We're very fortunate in that the team has grown into a global team. Now, we've got we've got people that are supporting us in many many different ways. So work will continue. Everything will continue as is without us in the in the office.
So to speak obviously whilst we're on the road. We'll be sharing about arms. A lot of what we're doing whilst on the road of they'll be a lot of media exposure across all that. We're course all that we're doing coming from us. We we we plan to have a documentary team with us. We will be live streaming.
So they'll be a lot of stuff coming out from W peanut through the work that we're doing. But of course the support the companionship of mentorship that's being delivered by W. Naught will continue as well. There's a fantastic team that will be. Supporting us from their offices wherever they are globally.
Hmm, the the route itself. It's quite it's quite gentle to begin with isn't it? When we when we go through the Netherlands, which is famously flat. We're going to have quite a nice time. And so we're going to try and clock up lots of hours and lots of miles and as we go through France, it turns out that the majority of the French portion of the journey is also quite flat.
So the first two-thirds look on well, actually I should say there's a. There's a gem of a thing in the Camus top where it shows you the elevation as you go along and basically for the first two thirds of the journey kind of Rises and Falls a little bit and it goes up a hundred meters here and 200 meters there, which is not so bad and then we hit then we hit the Pyrenees and then it all gets really interesting just sharing anxieties and things about that that that really genuinely makes me nervous.
Obviously. I'm going to try to be fit and healthy for that. What about what about you guys doing does any of this sort of stuff? Actually keep you awake at night or you thinking I really hope that I'm up to this.
Yeah. Yeah, this is this is going to be a challenge to be honest. Like I. I am I am not sure about how we can we can we can actually do this, but we will try right and in worst case it's going to be like some some parts of walking involved with the bike. So I mean we can only we can only try. As hard as we can to prepare and there is no unless we want to fly to the Pyrenees beforehand to give this a test, right?
There is no other way. Then finding out and there's always going to be solution. So again, I am very happy. I'm going to be on my bike, but I will need I will need some more batteries for that. So that's that's for sure. Yeah, you'll have to have 7 RV full of batteries. You can swap out as you go along Dan.
Yeah time time time for the truth. Come on anybody that knows me knows. I love a challenge good for you. But this this is slightly on another level. I'm yeah, it does there are concerns, of course it in terms of a physical challenge the personal physical challenge. I'm looking forward to it. I do like to have something to work towards doing towards.
But I'm yeah, I'm not going to I'm not going to lie. There are definitely concerns around it when we when we look at some of those elevations and we see Seventeen eighteen percent inclines. I think it one stage we had a period of a hundred and ninety eight kilometers of continuous a pill that's so easy to laugh about now.
Yeah. Yeah, so I've seen. It's just done some fantastic work on the reason we've been able to reduce some of those distances some of the length. So we're going uphill. Yeah, but there are still we can't we can't get around the fact that we've got to cross the Pyrenees. Yeah, and. Yeah, they I think I'll shortest day is around 86 87 km/h, which is the big one as we hit the the Pyrenees the galanga stays around a hundred eighty six hundred eighty seven kilometers.
I think that might even be our second day possibly think so. Yeah, I think it is the same. Yeah. Yeah. It's the kind of distance that you you know, you you pack up a car for. You know, you don't just open nip a hundred eighty seven kilometers for a few hours, you know, it's a long way and we be doing this day after day.
What are the dates that we're doing it people might be interested in put the things things like this in their calendar and keep track on it. Sure. So we were aiming to arrive at wordcamp Europe 2020 for the contributor day. So we're setting off. We're actually going to be attending the Work Camp retreat.
Prior to this event. So we actually start off with a couple of days of rest and relaxation. Shall we say from Italy kicking off which sounded The Retreat is and the 30th of April exactly. Yes. So we got 30th of April and off the back of that. We then head over to Berlin and start our journey. I think at the moment.
We are looking at the 4th of May. To start the journey from the astral in Berlin. Yeah made a fourth may be with you that's great in terms of. Sort of hammering home the message. This isn't about us getting on bikes and having a you know, we're not just doing this for the the sake of having a nice trip across the Pyrenees and what have you, you know, we've Illustrated that it's going to be difficult with Illustrated that we're taking it seriously and doing a bit of preparation and getting ourselves prepared.
But the the bottom line the purpose in the end is to is two pronged. It's to raise awareness about. The Charity's work, but also to engage the people around the charity to donate some money to to assist wpn up Ops work with Finance. So. This episode is going out significantly before will get anywhere near that bike ride, but the work of wpn up is already underway.
So Dan, I'd like you to spend a moment giving us all the details of how we can how we can assist WP and up if that's all right. Yeah. Sure. Absolutely. I'm as you mentioned. I mean, this is the we're touching on an incredibly important topic him as the mental health within the WordPress Community.
It does need better support. We put a survey out to the community and only Pastor 2019 and the results of that were alarming. We actually saw twice the international average in terms of individuals suffering with Suicidal Thoughts within our community. Which is it shows a huge as a big concern.
Obviously we need to do something to tackle this one and two that's responded and stated that they did feel they needed support from a mental health or better support from a mental health perspective. So. WP nap is trying to tackle that we're trying to deliver and professional mental health support which owing to raise awareness and increase the opportunity for people to engage with some form of support from a mental health perspective.
Of course, we are supporting the WordPress community. That is a global Community the so this is a this isn't this isn't a small undertaking and of course it comes at a cost of a physical very real monetary cost. So we do we do need to work with our community from a financial perspective to enable this to happen and we want we want to work with companies within our space.
Companies that benefit from having a healthy Vibrant Community as well as obviously individuals if they have the ability the opportunity to support us then then we were very very grateful. There are many ways that people can do that if individuals or companies are looking to donate into WP and up then visiting WP and up dot org forward slash donate is an option.
We have the we have the ability. To take reoccurring monthly donations or single one off donations. We're also as I mentioned looking to partner with businesses within our space both within and without I'll space if you're interested in knowing more about how to partner with wpn up how we can create exposure across all of the activities then do getting cut in touch with us.
So you can get in touch with our Partnerships team. We send as I can send email to Partners act wpn up dot-org. And then the team can get in contact. So I give you more information or tend to lie wpn up dot or forward slash Partnerships is another with another route. We really want to make sure that across all of this where we're working with businesses in our space and I say creating exposure of of companies that are willing to support positive mental health within a space.
It may not be something that you yourself have had a need for it may be something that you may avoid for the whole of your life. But it may be something that you you maybe work with somebody who has would have a need for WP and up and that's the flip side as well. It's not just about asking for donations.
It's also about letting you guys know. They support is available and you can go to the wp op dot org website. Should you need that help but yeah, as Dan says the you know how this works Charities are free at the point of access, but they can't run on no Finance. So yeah, if anything that we've talked about today is wrong any bells then please head over to WP and up dot org forward slash donate right?
I think. 52 minutes, we've probably talked enough about cycling. If you're there at wordcamp Europe come and look for us will be the three people on the ground panting praying praying for some for some R&R Carol. Thanks for joining us and Dan. Thanks very much indeed. Thank you for having us my goodness me.
What have we got ourselves into? I really hope that you enjoyed that it it is quite a large project. Maybe you got some sense of the scale of it all of the bits and pieces that have to fit together. The many cogs in the wheel if you. All of the bikes that need to be purchased all of the accommodation that needs to be thought through all of the sponsorship and so on and so forth.
It's quite a big undertaking, but obviously we're doing it for a good reason and if you go to the show notes, there's a link in there that you can click on if you would like to donate to the project and make it happen. Obviously wpn Abdu need supports that stuff cannot be done for free. And so heading over there and making a donation however large or small will make a difference and will keep things ticking over and I think it's a worthwhile cause anyway, thanks for listening to this week's podcast.
The WP Builds podcast was brought to you by WP and up one in four of us will be directly affected by mental health related illness. WPA and up supports and promotes positive mental health within the WordPress Community. This is achieved through mentorship events training and counseling. Please help enable WP and UP by visiting WP and UP dot-org /give.
okay, please join us next Thursday for the podcast and also join us on Monday and we'll have our weekly news comes out very early in the morning. And of course, we'll have a live version 2 p.m. UK time WP belts.com /live and please remember to go and bookmark WP builds.com /black because I will be making that page constantly updated with all of the latest deals.
There's loads on there already all around Halloween. Lots of them will be coming though in the weeks running up to Black Friday. Okay, that's is it for now All That Remains for me to do is to fade in some really dreadfully cheesy music this week and say bye bye for now!

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Nathan Wrigley
Nathan Wrigley

Nathan writes posts and creates audio about WordPress on WP Builds and WP Tavern. He can also be found in the WP Builds Facebook group, and on Mastodon at wpbuilds.social. Feel free to donate to WP Builds to keep the lights on as well!

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