Can you believe it's March already? I can't. This year is screaming past but it's all good. Today seems like a great day to take stock of what happened in February. It feels like I've really turned a corner recently with my new career, it's actually a thing now, it's working and going full steam ahead. That's meant I've had to make some big decisions, do things that scare me and learn to manage my emails better! My work is building and gaining momentum. When I wake up in the morning instead of asking myself "how can I make this work?" it's a question of what's the prority to focus on first. It's certainly keeping me on my toes!
Thought I'd do a little round-up of what kept me busy in February.
I had the honour of doing photoshoots with two talented photographers, James Carnegie and Alexander James. The weather was not playing ball on either of their shoots but we managed to create some stunning photos that I've been sharing on social. The heavy snowfall when shooting with James was so beautiful and atmospheric, I almost prefer it to the blue sky he was hoping for. I love James's photos and we had a great day in Chamonix.
Shooting with Alex was a very special day. Chamonix was dark and overcast but we took the first lift up and found ourselves above a cloud inversion with the sun beginning to peak over Mont Blanc. It was outrageously beautiful! His picture won the last week of the Adidas #openallwinter campaign and was shared by Redbull getting over 67K likes on Instagram!
Charley and I went to ISPO the world's largest outdoor trade show for two days to meet with as many brands as we could. The show is gigantic with room after room of shiny kit on display. We had back to back meetings arranged on both days, pitching sponsorship for Run Annapurna and a bunch of other exciting projects we are working on for 2015 and beyond.
Highlight was meeting many of the people we've spoken to for months on the phone, being given the new Montane brochure that Charley and I are the models for, and the party on the Haglofs stand.
K2 - Performance Challenge
As part of my partnership with K2, they set me a monthly performance challenge, something I want to improve on with their help. I've noticed that dealing with and embracing change is hard but hugely important in making progress. I spoke about this with K2 and they set me working on 'embracing change' as a challenge. I created this video to share my thoughts and experience with you.
The first of a new 'Challenge Series' I'm working on with Sidetracked went live. My article 'I Run to Live' shares my experience in going from a non-runner to not being able to imagine life without it. The project was in partnership with Salomon and photos by Daniel Wildey.
Charley and I had our first ski lesson together with an amazing instructor in Verbier. If you are looking for private lessons let me know and I'll hook you up, this guy is fantastic! My family came to visit and my brother and I took a tumble down the slopes whilst trying to take a picture leaving him with cuts to the face, entirely my fault, but that's a whole other story! We also had our first experience of proper off-piste skiing and combined it with a fun day indulging in Italian pizza and hot chocolate.
In other mountain news, I camped out at 2,595 metres one night with Sean Conway and some friends from Chamonix. I've been getting up at silly o'clock, sometimes as early as 3am to ski-tour up the mountains before sunrise. Such good training!
I went back to London and made this film with Samsung and Huffington Post based around me using their phone to support my training. That was a great experience and I'm definitely feeling more natural with time in front of the camera.
Later that night I did my first talk at the Inspired50 event and met loads of wonderful people at different stages on their journey with adventuring.
London to Paris
We extended the early bird discount for our London to Paris sportive to the end of February to give people a chance to catch up financially after Christmas. We've had a phenomenal response and with over 40% women this promises to be a really brilliant event. You can still sign up here, we'd love to have you join the adventure.
Finally, I made the decision NOT to go to Nepal and run the Annapurna circuit with Charley. Although we had planned to do this adventure together, with everything that is going on I knew it was the right decision to stay here and focus. I'm super excited to follow Charley's adventure and take on the challenge he has set himself. He left today for three weeks and I will miss him dearly! A big part of me is sad not to be with him but sometimes you have to make the call and take things away in order to make space to move forward.