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What made you start cycling?

LukeTCLukeTC Posts: 214
edited January 2017 in The cake stop
And probably more importantly, what motivates you to keep at it? Being relatively new to cycling it always intrigues me what got people started in the first place.

For me I used to commute to work by bike as a young lad, once I got my license it was car every day and never looked back, 10 years later I was about 4 stone heavier and wanted to save a bit of money, the logical thing was to start cycling to work again, kill 2 birds with 1 stone as it were. Before I knew I started to enjoy riding more, started riding my hybrid about for fun more than function. I work at a small family run business and have done since I was 17 gradually working my way up. My boss started to notice I was riding more and talking about cycling more. Being the nice bloke he is, he lent me the money to buy a road bike so I could start progressing further and let me pay him off at a measly 20 quid a week with no interest (not the sort of thing I'll soon forget ). Not making him feel like he pi**ed money down the drain then became my motivation, so I started riding more, and it kinda spiraled from there for me really, now I'm able to motivate myself to do it just because I want to and that's translated into other areas of my life too, more assertive at work, more confident, not so uptight, kind of mad how something so simple can change your life like that.

So how did it happen for you?
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  • smoggystevesmoggysteve Posts: 2,918
    I'm in the army so physical fitness is important. I picked up a knee injury about a decade ago which made it difficult to run. As a way of keeping my fitness levels up to a certain degree I started cycling more. It was either that or swimming and I hate swimming. It was also a better way to build up the muscles in my legs to help better support my knee as I recovered.From there it just takes hold of you and your wallet.

    I had always cycled and owned at least one bike for as far back a ms I can remember. My dad used to own a Peugeot Fibre de Carbon in the 80's which was one of the very first Carbon bikes really available to buy. I used to try and ride it but was always too big for me so my parents bought me a Coventry Eagle which I owned for years. I used to ride for miles on it until I was into my late teens then girls kind of take precedence in your social life. I moved onto mountain bikes as more of a commuter bike until I got my drivers license but still continued to take the MTB out and about in the hills overlooking the North Yorks coast. Then after joining the army and having a much better disposal income (plus tax free stuff in Germany) I started buying nice expensive shiny bikes like my first top quality road bike a Principia Rex with Campag gears.

    Since then nearly every bike I've owned has been either. Bianchi or a Scott. Now that I need to start looking at a replacement for my current bike I think it may have to be something different.
  • capt_slogcapt_slog Posts: 3,268
    I cycled a lot as a teenager and stopped when I got my first motorbike at 18

    Although I wasn't particularly unfit or a bit overweight, at around the age of 50 ish I was diagnosed with high blood pressure and put on 2 types tablets for it. One of these tablets makes you p1ss, and after one car journey a couple of years later where I had to stop about 3 times before we'd done a 100 miles, I said "sod it, I've had enough, I'm not taking any more of those!" I threw them away.

    I had to do something else to make up for not taking that tablet. I didn't like running lots, I'd damaged my feet running a marathon years ago, and I don't like gyms but we'd been lent a spin-bike. I used to be on this in the dark, outside under a carport, (the only place there was room), and a few months later i got a bike because I thought it might be more fun if I was moving.

    It was.

    This was just before the Wiggins effect.


    The older I get, the better I was.

  • TashmanTashman Posts: 2,735
    I used to cylcle a lot as a kid moving through the Raleigh steps of Striker - Grifter - Equipe. i rode that racer for years until I went off to uni with a shiny new mountain bike that was stolen after 2 weeks!! This was replaced with a cheap racer I got 2nd hand and rode into the ground (it rusted through above the BB). When I graduated I got my first car and consigned cycling to the shed for 18 years. I had a basic MTB but rode it rarely. Then had a knee injury meaning that goalkeeping is now not the best thing for me to do so needed a new exercise. Dusted off the old MTB that weighs more than a small family hatchback and enjoyed the time in the saddle. A friend was moving on his Giant Defy so I snapped it up and her I am now getting stronger in the knee and hopefully starting to shift some lumbar too. I'm finding Strava a great tool to motivate me now too as I can compete against myself
  • mrfpbmrfpb Posts: 4,390
    About 15 yrs ago I got a job where I needed to get around a lot - lots of journeys up to 5 miles, and we couldn't afford a 2nd car, so I bought a bike (which cost the same as a 100 days bus fare). So it was economics really.

    Eventually I got a job where a car became essential, and started cycling for leisure with the kids, then the kids got fed up with it and so I cycled alone for longer distances.

    (Then I signed up for the London - Brighton Moonride, googled for advice and found this place.)

    I switched from commuter bike to road bike when I signed up for RideLondonSurrey, around Spring 2014.
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,286
    Growing up my family never had a car and the bus service was patchy, so bikes were a normal way of getting about; my Dad cycled to work till he retired at 65. From about 11 years old me and a couple of mates started venturing further afield and cycling became just another leisure activity along with walking / camping. Must've cycled thousands of miles, sometimes managing trips to the coast and back which was over 100 miles round trip. When all my mates reached 17 / 18 and started getting mopeds and cars, I just got a better bike. It saw me through Uni and in to my first job. Then I bought a car, and lent the bike to a mate (who'd just had his licence taken away while they sorted out his epilepsy) and it was nicked while he was using it to commute.

    That's when I stopped cycling, probably aged 26. House / wife / children came along and filled my waking hours, and several job changes saw me go from mainly outdoor physical work to deskbound / driving 30,000 miles a year. I reached I think 38 before I returned to cycling. By then the boys both had bikes, and I thought I'd like to take them out on some longer rides like my Dad used to do with me. Saw a bloke selling BSOs in plain brown boxes on an old garage forecourt and bought myself a £50 bargain. 'Twas a "MTB" type of thing, fully rigid, plain steel tubing and finishing kit, cantilever brakes. Weighed a ton, but I loved it! OK, it was clearly built down to a price in China, and anything off-road and the vibration would have it shedding components like a tree losing leaves in a gale, and that's the only chain I've ever had snap on me, but I learned a lot about fixing bikes and truing the rubbish wheels.

    The other thing I quickly learned was that I was quite unfit and a bit overweight! I didn't remember cycling being hard as a teenager! But I stuck at it and gradually the fitness returned. 2 years later I sold the BSO to somebody at work and bought a real MTB in the sales. Still fully rigid but a quality triple butted steel frame and fork, groupset a mix of LX and XT, lovely wheels, tyres and finishing kit. It was a joy to ride.

    FFWD 10 years and I was still riding it, but mainly on the road. One day I was overtaken by a wiry old gent on a road bike. Try as I might, I couldn't catch him. That was the moment I knew I had to return to a proper road bike. Decent bonus coincided with my 50th birthday, so I treated myself, and I've never looked back. Now I have an alu winter bike with guards and a carbon summer bike without, and more cycling kit than regular clothing. I'm 60 later this year, but I don't think I've been this fit, or this weight, since my early 20s
  • Each year I set myself a challenge, to do something new/difficult/strange/daft/whatever.

    Around September last year purely by chance I saw an ad for Velo Birmingham, signed up and this years challenge was born. I've bought a bike and started training.

    Loving it so far :)
  • eric_draveneric_draven Posts: 1,182
    Used to ride and race BMX's back in the early/mid 80's up to being about 11/12,then got a cheap road bike when I was about 13,then on to MTB's when I was about 15 or so,used to do 3 paper rounds and a Sunday one as well to pay for them,kept riding until I was about 20 or so 100 milers on a weekend didn't seem hard,then I really got hooked on surfing and a lot of partying wine women and song and all that,didn't really start again until my late 20's and then I realized how unfit I had become,also suffered from IBS really bad by this time,and which still rears it's head quite regular,only really getting to grips with it and how stress related it is after 15 years or so,not helped by being ripped of by my brother for £30k+ but when I am feeling good and no effects,I can still crack 70+ miles on my road bike,and puts a huge smile on my face,same as a good day trail riding on my mountain bike,only ever ride for pleasure as riding should be
  • Stevo_666Stevo_666 Posts: 39,586
    A slipped disc stopped doing my usual sports of running and tennis so I had to find something more back friendly.

    Bought a mountain bike in early 2009, then a commuter bike later that year (used to ride to college ages back, not sure why I stopped).

    Never looked back.
    Whippet
    Bruiser
    Panzer
    Commuter

    "I spent most of my money on birds, booze and fast cars: the rest of it I just squandered." [George Best]
  • Define start. I guess, apart from being a kit I've had 2 starts.

    The first was to cycle to work from Charvil to Reading, about 6 miles. I did it quite religiously as well, had a Giant carbon for about £400, that was 2000. Swapped it to a Gary Fisher Marlin disc on, of all days, 9/11.

    Did it for ages then had a company car. A really really nice one. Then got utterly fat. Seriously fat. And, at one point, 19 stone, I'm 5ft 10. Looking back on it now I do wonder why I didn't run to work. I'd do that now if I lived that close.

    Much later, 2006, when I was ultra fat I took up running. I remember that first mile run. Within months had it up to 30k. Weight dropped off and easy to maintain it being off. Gradually got bored and saw buy now pay later on Wiggle. Bought a Focus Variado 2007. Ultegra, Fulcrum Racing 7. Started commuting 17 miles each way. Bought more kit, better kit, got into debt through kit. Cycle to work scheme got me more and more bikes. Got out of debt. Don't do debt kids.

    So, 10th year of being a proper cyclist now. Many bikes, lots of kit. Some knowledge. Lots of calories burnt, many cakes eaten.
    My blog: http://www.roubaixcycling.cc (kit reviews and other musings)
    https://twitter.com/roubaixcc
    Facebook? No. Just say no.
  • webboowebboo Posts: 2,127
    I rode bikes as a kid but nothing seriously, then in 1982 at the age of 22 my grandad gave me a 100 quid a sort bequest before he died. My mother suggested I bought a bike so I could get to some of the local climbing venues.
    I bought and read what Cycling magazines were available to see what to buy, bought a Carlton ProAm and because I liked what I read just started riding further and further.
    I have had times when I've not ridden much but I always come back to it.
  • DeVlaeminckDeVlaeminck Posts: 5,597
    I used to play local league football. Then at my place of work a few of my colleagues did circuits in the gym (it was a small campus of a uni) and went jogging at lunch so I joined in that and that led to taking up distance running. That took over from the football and injury led me to get my old school racer out occasionally.

    My running club used to run a certain route Tues and Thurs and it coincided with the local chain gang - we'd often be waiting at a crossing when they came lamping past at 30mph onto the Pentagon island and onto the A52 dual carriageway. Don't know why but I something about it just grabbed me and then I read the Tom Simpson biography and I decided this was for me. Went out and bought a second hand Mercian (little did I know already outdated) and joined the local hitters on their training rides. First time out think I lasted about a mile but soon got into it - helped that i was very lean from the running and still young enough in my mid 30s that that wasn't a disadvantage.
    AFC Mercia women - sign for us
  • bbrapbbrap Posts: 620
    Like most I spent most of my time with a bike from about 7 years until mid teens. Went everywhere on it in preference to public transport (parents did not have a car). Then the usual motorbikes (couple of 6 month sessions back on bike due to speeding totting up). Then cars, marriage and kids spoilt things although I tried to keep fit by running (we had a running club at work). Late 40's and the knees were getting a hammering from running so got another bike (old Elswick Hopper from someone at work) and used that for lunchtime rides. Did the London to Brighton a couple of times and that was it, well and truly hooked. Helps keep the weight off and I rarely seem to catch things that plague the rest of the family. Now retired so have plenty of time to get out where and whenever I feel like it (which is most days).
    Rose Xeon CDX 3100, Ultegra Di2 disc (nice weather)
    Ribble Gran Fondo, Campagnolo Centaur (winter bike)
    Van Raam 'O' Pair
    Land Rover (really nasty weather :lol: )
  • My dad bought me a bike with stabilizers. I've lost the stabilizers but never completely lost the cycling. Plenty of gaps but i usually came back to it for the few weekends of good summer weather every year.

    I've never been without a bike though. Raleigh with stabilizers, Dawes sports tourer, raleigh mtrax road bike, spesh Crosstrail, London Road and before i got the spesh i got a £99 mtb free with gym membership. It was that or £30 M&S vouchers, i can't see anything i like from that retailer so i got the bso. I've only ridden it to the car from the gym and around the driveway I once or twice. I'm really not sure it's safe. Think i might use it with slicks on the turbo because it's a pain switching from 26" to 700 wheels and my partner uses the 26" bike she has.

    Despite all those years i only really got serious during school holidays in summer for a few years and the past 4 or 5 years more so the last 2/3 years.

    Will i ever give up the bike? I hope not until I'm too old to ride. I love exercise you can lose yourself in the physical side of it whilst enjoying the countryside. Walking and cycling IMHO offer this total stress release like no other activity. I'm a cyclist until i die (luckily most drivers on my commuting route are safe and considerate drivers so i am confident I'll not die on the bike).
  • mamba80mamba80 Posts: 5,086
    found a boys hardbacked annual somewhere (i might have pinched it!) had a story about some guy called Tom Simpson, dressed in Peugeot kit, never heard of him or cycle racing but i was hooked, i was maybe 10 or 11, took a couple more years but got a road bike and i and my friend rode everywhere, even riding up to kent from cornwall @ 14yo to visit his Nan.

    Never stopped riding since, road racing TT, touring mtb ing, anything two wheels fascinates me.

    too much traffic or more to the point, too many idiots trying to kill me, has made me think about jacking road and doing long distance mtb ing instead, loads of big alpine epics to keep one occupied :)
  • andcpandcp Posts: 652
    What made me start cycling? - independence, freedom. At 9 years old (46 years ago) I got my first bike, a Carlton Corsa I think, for Christmas - it came second hand from the lead guitarist of Saracen (anyone remember them?) and I couldn't ride it on the day as it had flat tyres and my parents didn't think about buying a pump too.... Never been without a bike since.
    My main motivation is space, mainly for my head (job can be a bit stressful at times). I still love the sense of independence and freedom while I'm on a bike. Motivation over the years has varied; weight loss, trying to keep up with the 'lad', stopping the fags, etc. but a strange thing happened about 8 or 9 years ago - I'd been for a ride, put the bike away and thought 'I've had enough' and didn't touch a bike for another 12 months or so, just walked away from it. One day I just picked it up again.
    I'm doing more miles now than I have for a while but I suspect some of my other interests will start to gain more importance as this year goes on.
    "It must be true, it's on the internet" - Winston Churchill
  • mercia_manmercia_man Posts: 1,365
    edited January 2017
    I started serious adult cycling in my early 30s when I tried a friend's Muddy Fox mountain bike in 1986. I was already a keen off-road motorcyclist and this seemed a natural progression. I immediately decided to give up smoking and buy a mountain bike with the money I would save. It transformed my life.

    I got into touring with camping gear and in 1991 my wife and I gave up our jobs to spend the summer cycling across England, France and Spain following the ancient pilgrim route to Santiago de Compostela. For the trip I built up a touring bike which I still use today, a custom Alves frame with Campag equipment. I enjoyed many years of camping touring on that bike in Europe and also got into lightweight road bikes.

    The fitness from all that cycling helped me take up running in my fifties, winning various age group titles and championships on road and fell. I am now in my mid-sixties but still really enjoy cycling and running, particularly in the mountains. It was all down to that first ride on that Muddy Fox.
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 46,713 Lives Here
    Was made to cycle everywhere as a kid (as were my friends). From about the age of 5. Mum's rule was if I couldn't cycle there I couldn't see my friends. In fairness, she did the same. Would regularly clock up 20-30 miles a day riding around seeing all my mates in all the various villages by the time I was at secondary school.

    Meanwhile, starting watching pro-cycling as 10yr old with my grandfather, who talked me through what was going on.

    Given all my friends all cycled to see each other, we figured after GCSEs we'd go cycling around Cornwall to celebrate finishing secondary school. Ended up being a bit of a slog, which I perversely quite liked. Couldn't believe how much faster I was cycling after a week, and how much I could eat. Asked parents for a proper road bike the subsequent birthday. Few years later did 1000km in 5 days over the Pyrenees.

    I still commute, visit friends and shop by bike like I always did, and I never stopped road cycling since i started.

    Honestly can't really remember a time where I wouldn't be cycling to get places nearby or thinking about how fit I am so I can get out and enjoy a long ride without getting totally mullered.
  • pblakeneypblakeney Posts: 11,065
    The prospect of having to buy 38" trousers.
    Now comfortable in 32" thanks to cycling. No diet required.
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • One thing that's kind of grabbing my attention right now after all these years riding is how I've only ever done road cycling. The closest i got to off road cycling (apart from half a day rental in Scotland once) was riding my road bike over part of the forest of Bowland with my dad as a kid. So I'm trying other types of riding. I've got a gravel bike and have taken it over a lake district trail (towing a trailer but that's another first). I've toured last summer too. Touring is my new cycling interest.

    So after decades on and off the bike I'm finding new interests. That's the best thing, variety.
  • Was given a bike for my ninth birthday and used to go out and pedal round the block - a mile - over and over. I can still remember how the background noise of life and my nine year old's anxieties were left behind, how the sense of freedom and the feel of the air made me feel good. I'd come home from school and ride; may parents would argue and I'd ride, the holidays would get boring and I'd ride. I bought my first roadster - a single speed that I converted to three speed with paper round savings - second hand, painted it red and rode it everywhere; then after my first summer job as a student I bought a Puch twelve speed. Then a Dawes Galaxy, a Specialised Stumpjumper (stolen) Cannondale M 500 (stolen) Cannondale M 500 (stolen), Trek MTB (don't remember the model) and three bromptons (all stolen eventually).

    That's a lot of D locks gone :-(

    Hardly ever stopped riding - although with small kids it was mainly utility stuff with a child on the back or short 20 mile noodles about - and then moved back into touring seven years ago with a Ridgeback Voyage and then road five years ago with a madone (er, duh, stolen) and a Domane (in the hall last time I looked).

    I rode for an hour yesterday lunchtime and like all my rides at the moment, as soon I got out the background noise of life and my work anxieties were left behind and the sense of freedom and the feel of the air made me feel good. Even day I've ridden a bike, that's what I've felt. Sometimes get tired of the weather and my own level of fitness but never get tired of being on a bike.
    __________________________________________
    >> Domane Four Series > Ridgeback Voyage
  • laurentianlaurentian Posts: 1,688
    A bit like a couple of posters above, I was brought up in a village and my bike was just part of "essential" kit along with a sheath knife, catapult and skinned knees. Used to go everywhere on it, to see friends miles away, racing mates . . . or a load of us just going "for a bike ride" (I now pretentiously call this "training"). The bike that sticks in my mind from the time was my Sun Snipe bought second hand from a lad up the road . . . loved that bike.

    Anyway, jump forward 30 odd years and I am playing rugby every Saturday, the Mrs is running half and full marathons - we're both participating in sport of some sort but nothing together.

    So the conversation goes something like this:

    Mrs: We're going on a bike ride
    Me: Oh . . . who's bikes we using
    Mrs: Ours
    Me: We don't have bikes
    Mrs: I've just ordered one and you need one for Tuesday because that's when we start training
    Me: Training?? For What
    Mrs; The bike ride
    Me: When is it
    Mrs: September (currently February)
    Me: Where is it?
    Mrs: Scotland
    Me: Scotland??? Why, and how far
    Mrs: 150 miles in two days
    Me: **??!!"^%ck me!

    Anyway - did a bit of research, asked a few questions on here, took some advice and bought a second hand Allez. Trained, did ride in Scotland and have loved it ever since> Me and the Mrs have had some great times on the bikes and over the years a handful of mates have got into it too. We now don't even go on holiday unless we're taking or hiring bikes.
    Wilier Izoard XP
  • secretsamsecretsam Posts: 4,523
    Never bothered with bikes as a kid growing up in urban 1970s Bristol. Only when I was 13 did a mate teach me, 'cos he couldn't believe I didn't know how to ride!

    I had a vacation job on the other side of Bristol so used to ride to and from each day, and a bit of other cycling but was more an interested observer than a keen rider - read loads about it but didn't actually ride that much (same now, really)

    Went to University and pretty much stopped riding, then passed driving test and quit altogether for years, but still had my old bike. Change of office prompted the need for cycling again, and rediscovered by love of it. All those years (15+) wasted...

    Now am a recreational and commuter, but would love to have time to ride more.

    It's just a hill. Get over it.
  • pblakeney wrote:
    The prospect of having to buy 38" trousers.
    Now comfortable in 32" thanks to cycling. No diet required.

    I'm a 34/36. Never likely to be much less than that. 39 chest which is pretty much my rib cage! I did once have to attend an event and my jacket was a little tight. 46 so had to get a 48.

    That was kind of when I decided to shift some weight.
    My blog: http://www.roubaixcycling.cc (kit reviews and other musings)
    https://twitter.com/roubaixcc
    Facebook? No. Just say no.
  • veronese68veronese68 Posts: 22,318 Lives Here
    I started as a kid and never really stopped, but was more of an occasional cyclist. Like the people that claim they are cyclists too after nearly killing someone. As a kid I'd go out with my mates and ride all over Wimbledon Common on whatever bike I had at the time. Used to ride to school a lot. When I started driving the bike took a back seat, but I kept it going as I also liked a drink so would ride to places if I was drinking. I got a used mountain bike for messing about on. Got a better one just before my son was born in '98 and rode a bit more. Sold my motorbike and started to ride to work about 7/8 years ago. Was prompted to do it after having Hodgkins Lymphoma I just had a bit of a rethink. I wasn't fat, but was unfit as I did no exercise. I don't do many miles by the standards of many on here, probably 3,000 most years. I try to do at least one 'event' type ride a year. London to Brighton off road 4 times, Ride London once, Ditchling Devil complete once and a few others. This year I've entered my first competitive event in the Battle on the Beach, stupid idea. Next year I want to do the Eroica for my 50th. Good excuse to buy another bike.
  • fat daddyfat daddy Posts: 2,632
    laurentian wrote:
    So the conversation goes something like this:

    Mrs: We're going on a bike ride
    Mrs: I've just ordered one and you need one for Tuesday because that's when we start training.

    I think I love your Mrs !!!!
  • FlâneurFlâneur Posts: 3,027
    As a kid i was taught and owned a bike and so I rode one, be it to the park, with friends, with family, on holiday, slightly older I used it for a paper round. Then a good few years gap where the bike really was used to get between X and Y before I was 17 and had a car and I was busy with other sports such as rugby/skiing/climbing/sailing. Came back to it at 25 as I was bored of running and swimming and a friend had picked up a road bike and suggested I join him.

    Having someone to ride with, especially a friend, rather than being in the pub was all I needed for an excuse. several years on and according to strava he is my bike buddy still. I enjoy it still, prefer the distance you can cover in time and the sense of exploration I get from cycling compared to running.
    Stevo 666 wrote: Come on you Scousers! 20/12/2014
    Crudder
    CX
    Toy
  • Garry HGarry H Posts: 6,614
    Raced BMX back in the mid 80s. Have ridden for fun/transport ever since.
  • Always had bikes as a kid, pulling skids etc. Got my first real MTB at 12, and Al Carter Sarratoga and have ridden properly since then on fairly basic bikes.

    Got to age where a bit more disposable income was around so bought a brand new Santa Cruz Heckler (after owning the same 2nd hand for a year or two).

    With age, wine and cheese comes weight so I decided to put in some road rides, sheer comendy on a 32lb 6" travel full suspension bike so stripped and sold my hartail MTB and ended up with a second hand Allez. The bug bit so to speak and I now have a disc equipped carbon Trek Domane.

    829152E9-AB53-40B6-BE81-C8F68532C484_zpsiueqotzt.jpg

    My motivation to ride is mainly for fun ans partly for fitness, I say partly because it seems that no matter how much I ride I don't get any lighter :roll:
    Advocate of disc brakes.
  • dizzydanedizzydane Posts: 335
    Been riding bikes my whole life. Parents bought me my first bike at 3, and every year I wanted a new one! Started cycling to school at 10yrs, still riding to work at 33. Swapped mountain biking for the road, purchase cars on boot space and now find myself basing property purchase on proximity to cycle buddies, commuting time, bike space and if no garden, a wash bay ;o)

    I have met some incredible people on my rides, helps to stay healthy, saved money and seen some beautiful places. :D
  • JesseDJesseD Posts: 1,961
    Had many bikes over the years and cant actually remember my furst one, however the first one I can remember is a Grifter when I was around 10 years of age, then BMXs took over and I had a Diamond Back Viper which was at my 11 years the most awesome thing in the world. Then one day in my first year of high school me and a mate watch American Flyers and that somehow got me into road biking, I borrowed my uncles Harry Quinn and as we lived in the censored end of nowhere used it to go cycling for miles every spare minute I had, racing mates etc, I had found the one sport that I loved.

    As I was riding every spare minute I had my dad took me to a local cycling club, Cardiff Ajax and I started riding with them, still remember my first Sunday Club run, was 100 miles in the winter and bonked at 85 miles and had to almost be pushed home, but that was it I was sold and went back the following week. The following year I started racing with some success on both the road and the track, got selected to ride for Wales a few times and won a couple of titles.

    Unfortunately I discovered alcohol and women and the bike was redundant (my days always says I swapped one bike for another – not particularly politically correct my dad), throughout my 20s I had tried lots of sports (golf, football, squash, rugby, tennis, gym and swimming) but none stuck and it stayed that way till my late 20’s when I took up triathlon as I was a god swimmer and not a bad cyclist (so I thought), I quickly dropped swimming and running and my love of cycling quickly rekindled.

    I rode for fun throughout most of my 30’s with some forays back into racing which were cut short by being hit from behind by a car when out training, but over the past 3-4 years I have started to ride more seriously, have started racing again and am loving it. I love the freedom it gives me, the time on my own to think or not think, it’s a great stress reliever after being sat at a desk all day, can’t imagine not riding a bike to be honest. I ride 5-6 days a week, I don’t own a car, I commute by bike in all weathers, and as most of us do probably ride more miles in a week than the average person drives in their car.
    Obsessed is a word used by the lazy to describe the dedicated!
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