Zero to Sixty-Two in Four Months

It was less than two months after first getting a couple of bikes and joining Kent Velo Girls, that we were saying to Bee that – perhaps next year – we would be fit enough to join in the 50-mile course run by KVG every spring.  Our cycling history so far had been limited to taking part in the Easy Monday ride and signing up to the 9-week Turbo course and although we were enjoying the rides they were still a challenge and we were by no means fit.

We should have known better than to even mention the 50 because Bee swept aside all our excuses: ‘Not fit enough’

‘The course will get you fit enough’ she said

‘Haven’t ridden more than a slow 20 miles before.’

‘About time you did’ she said;

Can’t commit to every Monday for the next six weeks ‘

‘No problem, you can swap to some Saturdays’, she said

‘We won’t be able to do it’

‘You absolutely will!’ she said

So we did and we did the Turbo sessions and an extra homework ride of at least 90 minutes each week and gradually we built up the miles and on 7 March 2015 we completed the 50 mile ride, (adding an extra 12 miles on due to Garmin malfunction!) at an average speed of 13.47mph – and we loved it.

We rode with each group leader over the weeks and it is due to them and our fellow 50 milers especially Jo Towers who lent Sandra a bike, that we managed to complete the course and enjoyed the course and have now ticked the ‘Like’ button on the KVG French 100 miles Facebook notice!  Every single woman we have cycled with has been supportive and endlessly encouraging.  We have laughed so much, fallen off (Annie mostly), sped downhills, powered up them (well, ‘got’ up them), eaten strange new foods and drinks (and learnt how to do it on the move) and definitely got fitter and stronger.  Thank you, group leaders: Jo Dodds, Clare Midgley, Beth Jones, and surrogate Kate Smith who took us out for the 35 miles during the icy disruptions, and all who rode with us.  Thank you, Bee, and congratulations to all those who completed the 50 miles course.

Sandra Puckett and Annie Jones
12 March 2015

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