When you get accepted as a contestant on the Great British Bake Off, there’s a very interesting part of the contract. It warns “you will gain weight”! I have to say that with the amount of baking I’ve done over the past 18 months, it’s inevitable that it takes its toll a bit but I’ve got quite an active week ahead to start making up for it.
Just a quick blog update from me tonight as I’m busy at the moment developing some more recipes for the Scoff channel on YouTube. I’ve really enjoyed doing these and I’ve put the links to all of my video recipes so far on my website here. Last week I was really excited to see my book cover was released. Publication of B.I.Y. Bake It Yourself isn’t far away – it’s released on 27 August – but hopefully I’ll be getting an advance copy in the next month or so. We’re filming the Bake Off “Class of 2014” programme soon so I’ve been thinking a lot about how much has changed in a year. Writing my own book has been a real highlight and I’m very proud of it.
I’ve juggled my post-Bake Off life around my normal life quite well, it helps being self-employed, but one of the things that’s suffered a bit is my fitness. I used to go to Pilates classes once or twice a week before Bake Off – they even filmed me at one of my classes as part of my ‘backstory’ for the show. But I find I’ve been baking most evenings over the past year so I’ve got out of the habit of going. Pilates is really good for a job like mine, as I have to do a fair bit of lifting and digging, which can take its toll on your back particularly. My Pilates instructor Christian is a top bloke and he also runs regular 8-week fitness courses (if you’re based in North-West London check them out), which I started again yesterday. It’s given me the impetus I needed to go back to Pilates classes this week too.
This Saturday evening, I’ve signed up for the Jupiter London Nocturne Cycle Race taking place around Smithfield Market. I’m going to be taking part in the Santander Cycle race, which will involve belting around the course on one of London’s cycle hire bikes as fast as I can for 15 minutes. I’m pretty out of practice when it comes to cycling, particularly on these bikes, but it should be a real laugh. My wife Sarah works on cycling strategy for London and was involved in launching cycle hire five years ago so we have pictures of bikes all over our house. If you’re in town, come along and watch – it’s a great night out with races from elite riders to penny farthing riders to total amateurs like me.
I have to try not to overdo it on Saturday night, however, as on Sunday morning I’m meeting up with my friends from Great Ormond Street Children’s Charity to take part in their Race for the Kids event in Battersea Park. It’s their annual 5km family fun run so we’re taking our girls along to join in. The weather looks like it’ll be great so why not come along with your own family and take part too. I reckon I’ll have earned a bit of tea and cake by Sunday afternoon!
Anyway, I’ve got to get back to recipe testing so I’ll catch you next week – hopefully a bit fitter too!