Fascinating (but tough) day with our Platinum sponsors M2M2 going through a number of physical tests to determine our overall fitness levels. Facilitated by Cardiff Metropolitan University, we had blood samples tested at various rates of exertion to determine our lactose levels and hence efficiency. Read below for a detailed account of our trip to Guildford and Cardiff.
The Full Made to Measure Mentoring Experience
On the Sunday night, as we settled into our hotel rooms in Guildford, we each sat and thought about what to expect over the next 72 hours. We were in town at the invitation of our Platinum Sponsors, Made to Measure Mentoring Ltd, for their ‘one year on’ conference. We had been asked to present on the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, and the impetus behind Force Atlantic - as we were coming so far, we had also been invited to the keynote speeches on the Monday and the champagne reception that followed.
The Monday morning was very interesting, and as 'M2M2' presented on their impending catastrophic success, we all thought "what a nice problem to have...catastrophic success in TWAC probably looks like some sort of benevolent tsunami!". A relaxing session in the gym and sauna was then followed by the reception and delicious dinner. The background of many of M2M2's consultants is in the RFU, and with 3/4 of Force Atlantic being egg chasers of the highest order, we all had a great time reminiscing of the glory days. However, the RFU heritage at M2M2 was out in full following the meal, and following some singing to put the Cabbage Patch to shame, we found ourselves in an un-planned Force Atlantic 'heart to heart', over seen by a bullring of professional mentors! If nothing else, Made to Measure Mentoring and Force Atlantic shared more with each other that night than many business partners ever will!
The following day we completed our presentation, bleary eyed, to what sounded like rapturous applause (...or that may have been the drum line banging in our collective heads...), and made our way to Cardiff. Andy from M2M2 hosted us graciously at Cardiff Met University where he is a Senior Lecturer, and alongside his colleague Paul, were set to put us through out paces for some lab-based physiological testing. Our coach, SSgt Ben Leach, was also in attendance.
We were instructed to row, increasing power output every 5 minutes, and having blood drawn from our ear lobes to test for lactate levels. This was to be done until we reached 110% of our capacity, or our blood lactate hit the prescribed number... or whichever came sooner! The noises made by some members of the crew, would have you believe the rowing machine was a device of pure torture..! The results we are yet to see, but Coach Ben has said that this "sub maximal" testing will help to guide our training going into the last 3 months.
We then headed back to Harrogate for some recovery, a berocca, and alka-seltzer - the holistic hospitality of M2M2 had frankly, knocked it out of us! Nevertheless we were back on the boat toiling on Friday and Saturday, creating a home away from home for the upcoming adventure.