My First 50 Miles by Ellen

My 50 mile course

I decided that I had to stop kerfuffling around the easy rides some time previously and I promised myself (talked myself into it) that if I completed the 50 mile course I would have to go up to the intermediate rides finally!

The first thing I did was enter all the dates into my diary and keep Wednesday’s free also for my homework rides.

As I filled up all the Monday’s in February , I did realize that this is normally a chilly month but I would be in the same boat as the other ladies and within 40 minutes of the ride ending I could be in a hot bath or even sooner grab a shower at Hilden.

The first day Susan took us out , we were all a bit apprehensive but knew 25 miles would be OK. I was by far the slowest that day but I was gently encouraged and coaxed along. As the weeks progressed I found myself looking forward to venturing into different areas and convinced myself it was only a few more miles

One week it was so windy that Clare lead us home early having had to cut the route short. Now, I don’t like to go down on my drops but when such a wonderful , experienced cyclist such as she tells you to tuck in behind her I did , hoping I wouldn’t be blown away!

One of the things that motivated me to keep turning up was that I wanted to keep up with my group and not slow them down, it really is a group effort. I missed one ride but Karen was there on the Wednesday to lead myself and others on that weeks 35 mile ride.

Some like to study the routes but every week I preferred to turn up not thinking too much about them. We waited expectantly to see who would be leading us each Monday,as we were all encouraging each other , we discussed what goodies/ food helped us to keep going, had we slept well the night before , what other rides had we squeezed in.

My own anxieties started to diminish and I was looking forward to the end of the course and the sense of achievement I would receive. I wasn’t disappointed , the final day came and I can only remember great weather. I was so happy and pleased with myself. Were there tears??? of course there were! Tears of tiredness and happy emotion. I am so thankful to all the leaders and women I rode with and those ladies also who gave me encouragement in the car park. All their generosity I found over whelming.

Things I’ve figured out…. don’t have a comfort zone , ride with many different leaders and ladies. Just keep turning up.

It doesn’t matter what size you are, age or background cycling with KVG is for everyone.

I’m getting braver!

I still need to go on a descending course!

Ellen x