There is something both scary and exciting about doing something for the first time. The reality is that you never know if you can do something until you try. You can spend your time talking about things, or actually living them. I do a bit of both, but in recent years I’ve decided that life is just too short to waste it dreaming. The things that 10 years ago I said I could never do..... well I’ve given many of them a good shot, with varying degrees of success. With every challenge I set myself, I’ve learned new things about myself. I’ve learned that I can do crazy things. But, I’ve also learned that I have developed a remarkable mental toughness for adversity, and will to carry on, even when many others might quit. I’ve also learned that Type 2 fun does exist, and you mostly don’t realise you had fun until after.
A good friend of mine & seriously talented mountain biker decided today that she wanted to start a blog. Among I’m sure many other reasons, she said she was inspired by my blog. Ironically, shortly before all this Covid stuff she also inspired me, which is how we became friends. Her passion for riding and competing in mountain biking stoked an old love of mine for being off the beaten track.
I'm still a little nervous if I'm honest about embarking on an off-road ultra that is approx 8 times in distance further than anything I have done so far in training. As someone who have never done this kind of thing before, one way to help me sort out my nerves has been to understand what the route is going to throw at me
From long distance road rider to off roader - what I’ve learned since making the transition. Forget everything you once knew about speed… 10 mph could be a very good average, but so can 6 mph. Some trails will be fast and exciting, whilst at other times you might be…..
Now that I had set myself on a course to complete the Great British Escapade I needed to get comfortable with off road riding. But with my Ribble CGR having a road set up, I needed to consider whether it was going to possible to make inexpensive changes to the bike to make it suitable, or if I would in fact be better off dusting off my old Specialized Rockhopper that had been languishing in the basement for years.
As I’ve started to enjoy getting off the beaten track, I’ve found myself yearning for a new challenge for the year. As someone who always get excited about hearing of new adventures, I can find myself quickly signed up for things without really thinking about just how far outside my comfort zone they are. This year has been no exception.......I started to wonder if I might be able to do an off road bike-packing race. I mean, come on, how hard could it be?