There are certain things in life (cartwheels, being in a band, dying my hair pink) that, being the wrong side of 35, I've simply missed the boat on. But happily, it's not too late to become an adventurer. And I can get to grips with mountain-biking, canoeing, abseiling, trail running and navigation with a group of like-minded, overgrown Swallows And Amazons. Fast And Light introductory adventure camps, by TrailPlus and Salomon, are based in the Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire and are suitable for even the most athletically challenged. The emphasis is on fun, and you get to practise your newly acquired skills in a team race on the Sunday afternoon. The weekends run on September 22-24 and November 24-26; £195 full board, with dormitory style accommodation. Call 01457 855425 or visit trailplus.com.
You probably know all about how Floyd Landis 'soiled the yellow jersey' of the Tour de France, but you may not know that the UK's biggest professional cycling race is taking place as we speak. The six-stage Tour of Britain kicked off last Tuesday in Glasgow and after covering an average of 110 miles a day through Scotland, the north-west, Yorkshire, the West Midlands and Kent, competitors thrash it out in a 20-lap chase around The Mall tomorrow. The 100-plus riders will be competing to win individual stages, become King of the Mountains (well, King of Highgate Hill, anyway), be the best sprinter and win the points competition, as well as fighting for the overall title. Tomorrow's final stage begins in Greenwich at 2.30pm and will reach The Mall around an hour later. While you can't join in the race, you can get into the spirit at Transport For London's BikeFest, aimed at getting more Londoners in the saddle. Taking place within viewing distance of the race, opposite St James's Park, you can try bikes on a test track, learn basic cycling and bike maintenance skills, pick up cycle maps and check out the latest equipment. For more information on the race, go to tourofbritain.com. For BikeFest, visit tfl.gov.uk/cycles.
Type II shoe
Different trainers for different sporting activities are quite the norm these days. But ASICS is surely first off the starting blocks with its new Gel Cardio trainers - shoes designed specifically for type 2 diabetics. How, exactly? Well, the shoe is designed to allow those with diabetes to walk and work out comfortably while preventing the foot problems to which they are often prone, due to reduced sensation in the feet and poor circulation. The contoured midsole is designed to decrease pressure on the soles of the feet but is firm enough to improve sensitivity underfoot. It's made from a special EVA material to aid 'bounce back', and silicone in the heel helps absorb and dissipate shock. The inside is antibacterial and seamless to prevent friction and reduce the risk of infections, abrasions or blisters - which could lead to ulcers. The bigger opening makes the trainer easier to get on and off and it comes in a standard wider-width fitting. Watch this space for shoes for hangover sufferers, infused with milk thistle and with extra quiet soles. Gel Cardio, £90, 01925 243360 for stockists, or visit asics.co.uk.