6-10

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  1. Stand up on a Surfboard

Can you surf in contact lenses? Can you surf with zero upper body strength? Can you surf when you have basically no sense of balance and bruise like a peach? All important questions that will be answered this year thanks to a challenge from Richard. With the promise of his expertise and a loan of surfing equipment, I think I’ll be spending a couple of weekends in Abersoch this year, and will eventually become a surfing pro.

  1. Learn to Ride a Horse

A brilliant challenge from one of my most recent Manchester friends, Kat. She’s running the London marathon today like a boss, so the least I can do is take a few riding lessons. I’m still a little haunted by the Tarporley Donkey Derby c. 1997 when my Mum entered me into a race behind my back, I managed to fall off the back of the donkey and get kicked in the knee, but I’ll try and get over it.

  1. Learn a Song on an Instrument you Don’t Already Play

Jose is Kat’s lovely partner and a fellow board game geek. His challenge will give me the excuse to crack out the banjo that I got on a whim and which has been gathering dusk under the bed for years. Apologies to all of my new neighbours, this is going to get very annoying very quickly, but hopefully it won’t escalate.

  1. Chillout/Unplug Once a Month

Kate H is an angel amongst lesser mortals and I am lucky to have someone so concerned about my wellbeing in my life (and in the challenge). She has set me the task of unplugging from work (and from other stresses and responsibilities if possible) for one day a month, and indulging in something fun instead. It’s a challenge partly inspired from the Artist Dates in The Artist’s Way (known as The Artist’s Wank to some of us). I think it’ll be harder than it sounds.

  1. Walk from London-Brighton

I was kind of hoping Claire would change this challenge, but she seems to be sticking to her guns so I’ll give it a go. Now I love a good walk as much as the next person but I don’t think I’ll be ready to do the UK’s Greatest Endurance Challenge by the May Bank Holiday weekend. I’ll try and either do it over a few days later in the year or push the boundaries of the challenge slightly and do the official 100km overnight race in May 2017. Anyone want to join me?

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