When I talk to people about the tour I meet one of two reactions. Some people assume that the whole thing is planned in infinite detail that I have a team of doctors lined up and advising me and that I have an Olympics style fitness regime all laid out. Other people assume I'm an idiot who's done nothing.
The second lot are far nearer the truth. I cycle when I can. I haven't planned a single route. I figure it will all sort itself out when the time comes because... well, because it'll bloody well have to.
Some of the people who assume I'm an idiot have been brilliant in offering me advice and assistance. One of those people is someone I'm more than a little in awe of.
I'm an incredibly lucky man. The tour came up in conversation when I was a guest on Something For The Weekend the other day. Sitting at home watching the show was a cycling legend: Chris Boardman. He won an Olympic gold medal in 1992 - at the time, Britain's first cycling gold for 72 years - he's worn the yellow jersey on the Tour de France a few times and he's set a few world records in his time, too!
He got in touch with me that afternoon - y'see, I do read my e-mails - to say he'd offer me a bike. I spoke to him a day or two later - me, on the phone, chatting away to Chris bloody Boardman! - and he was, unsurprisingly, a lovely, funny fella.
Y'know how Britain were ridiculously dominant in the velodrome at the Beijing Olympics? Guess who led the Reasearch & Development team for GB Cycling? Him! What am I supposed to say when someone like that offers me a bike? I mean, I'm not likely to be approached by anyone more knowledgeable am I? Even back in the day he was always more than just a cyclist - he was always involved in bike design.
So I said, yes. Obviously.
And this morning I picked up my new toy. It's so much lighter than my regular bike. I intend to get some miles done on it this week. I'm very, very excited.
Chris is running the London marathon this year. Which is very silly of him because there's no free-wheeling when you run. But apparently he enjoys it. He's doing it for the National Autistic Society. If you want to sponsor him, looky here: www.justgiving.com/chrisboardman
Before my tour, I'm going to be cycling the London to Brighton ride in aid of the British Heart Foundation. If everything goes according to plan, this is the bike that'll take me there. (And back.) If you'd like to sponsor me, looky here: www.justgiving.com/dgorman