August 15th was national Cycle to Work Day in the UK. It seemed only sensible for BackPedalling to play a part. So, here’s the story of how I rode to work yesterday…
Not as easy as it sounds.
You’d think that, as a mountain bike guide, I cycle to work all the time. You’d be wrong. For a start, I spend more days in the office doing admin and planning than actually riding. On top of that, even if I am riding, the chances are that the ride I’m delivering is far more than riding distance from home.
In fact, thinking about it, I would cycle to work far more often when I worked in an office every day.
When the stars align
Yesterday was different. On Wednesday morning I deliver my Wellbeing Rides on the other side of Winchester. Wellbeing rides are relaxed paced rides on benign paths, trails and back roads. They’re ideal for people who want to inject a little light exercise into their week in a laid-back environment. They also start about 15 minutes ride from the door.
So, here’s the first instalment of Cycle to Work Day BackPedalling style:
But wait, there’s more Cycle to Work
As luck would have it, Wednesday is a double-barrelled day (assuming I have no one:one clients in between), because the evening is when I deliver my Back to Biking rides. Back to Biking is what it says on the tin: rides that help people get back on their bikes and overcome all the obstacles that might stop them doing so. I find the good paths, I make sure the pace and length are right, I look after you if something goes wrong with your bike. Better yet, they start at the bottom of the hill by my house: about 4 minutes ride from the door.
Rather laughably, here’s what the second cycle to work of the day looked like:
Please do cycle to work
Cycle to Work is a brilliant thing, because it encourages people to get out and ride. I used to do it every day, rain or shine, winter and summer, taking my bike on the train and, sometimes, it was the highlight of the day. Many people worry that they aren’t fit enough, or that they lack the skills, or that the roads are too dangerous. Whilst these fears are entirely reasonable, trying it might show you that it’s a lot more pleasurable than you think.
There’s a lot to be said for the way that riding releases endorphins which help you feel better and set you up for the day. Try it, you might like it.
I’d like to say a big thank you to Al Boothroyd for the loan of his helmet camera. Cheers buddy.