Tag Archive for cycling

Going Alone

I struggle with staying indoors or doing nothing when the sun starts to shine.  With the bad weather we have had despite it being April, I am getting serious cabin fever.

So on Sunday morning with my swimming partner out of action due to illness, instead of going to the pool alone, I popped to my mum and dads for a large mug of green tea….. This was my first solo bike ride, a round trip of just under 11 miles!

I struggled to hold the bike up at first as my whole body was shaking with a mix of fear and excitement.

Even writing this I feel pathetic.  I am a 32 year old woman, who has been riding a bike since I was about 4…. This was a huge step for me though.  And one that deep down I know is not pathetic.


I know the route to mum and dads really well, some would say I could do it with my eyes closed….. And in the dark, that would be almost the same thing.  It is almost all cycle path, no problem at all.

Until you factor in joggers, other cyclists and the odd low flying buzzard!

As part of my condition I lost my ability to judge speed and depth, so when seeing another cyclist, I just stop.  sounds daft, but then I can’t possibly ride into them that way.  This does leave me often standing still for a while, but its the safest way I can think of.

I’m not sure what my consultants would say if they knew that I did this, I am not legally allowed to drive a car, but I have never been asked to take a test to ride a push bike.  If I didn’t feel safe….. I wouldn’t do it, and like I said in a previous post, I do know my area very well and will only ride within cycle lanes, cycle paths and on the odd footpath in between.

In doing this and trying to keep my independence, I have also been called a fraud, but then, in reading a label in the supermarket or looking at my own watch I have also been called a fraud.

This is an open blog, please feel free to let me know your opinion.  Good or Bad, all I ask is that you keep your language polite.

So over to you…….

Getting on my bike!

So with just under 29 weeks until I find myself running the great south run,  which I am doing for 2 reasons…..

1) To raise money for guide dogs, who without their support and funding, I would not be have half the independence that I have today.

2) As a person achievement for me – I’m not going to break any speed records, but I am going to complete it by jogging/sprinting the entire course.

As a mum of 2, the reading on the scales has up radially gone up, something that I am determined to change.  I don’t believe in fad diets, but healthy eating and that everything is good and allowed within moderation.  To help with this I have joined my local Slimming World group for moral support.  This hasn’t been without its own ups and downs, but it has also proved that a lot of the scales gain has come from loosing or thinking that I had lost my independence…..   Life also gets in the way of exercise alot of the time, well the excuse that it does is actually what gets in the way!

With a guide dog I do try and walk as much as possible, I don’t have the luxury of jumping in the car to pop out for milk!  But I really missed the bike rides and the swimming.

So guess what?

I do both !!!!!  With the help of a friend I have gradually built up my confidence to swim, he has helped me strengthen my technique and we aim to go swimming together once a week, in addition to this I have signed up for a swim membership and often find myself at the pool, by myself at least once more each week.

Now that the weather is cheering up (although as I write this, it’s started to rain!) today the bike got dusted off and taken out….. With my daughter who is 7 we rode 4.2 miles to a nice pub for lunch, before taking the slightly longer route of 4.8 miles home again.

Some of you may be reading this with a sense of fear, for not only my safety, but that of my daughters…. Please trust me when I say that I would not do this without feeling safe.  I am a firm believer that pavements are for both cycles as well as pedestrians (showing respect for each others space) I am also very lucky to live within fareham and its neighbouring town of Gosport, that both have a wonderful network of cycle track and designated cycle lanes on the roads.

With my central vision and concentration I am able to cycle very comfortably within these perimeters and pay full attention to my daughter.


Today we did also had a bit of help from a friend as my daughter had not previously had a lot of confidence with her riding.

But once she started there was no stopping her, I think she definitely carries my determined gene.

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