The Joy of Cycling
This week, our coaches have been reflecting on the pure joy of cycling.
Yes, it may be a career choice for them, and in Ed Clancy’s case it became a way of life during his Olympic career, but sometimes, you need to just reflect on how much fun cycling can be.
And we want to inspire our academy riders to focus on the fun as much as the training.
Here, some of our coaches talk about cycling just for the pure joy of it.
Ed Clancy OBE
“Riding a bike started off as fun, freedom, escaping school and family, getting out and pedalling. As a youth it was also a social thing, meeting my mates after school. It’s also handy transport when you’re a kid and can’t drive! Then it developed into something more and became a job - power cranks and heart rate monitors. It was not just my living, but my passion, my drive to achieve. But it’s come full circle now for me. Now I’m playing again, getting out on my mountain bike, enjoying the scenery and getting some exercise in. Cycling has meant different things to me at different times in my life. Different bikes play different roles. Road cycling and racing is as much for me about meeting up with my friends. My mountain bike is for me to play on my own and just have fun.”
“When you’re in the racing world you can get a bit of tunnel vision about why you ride. Since stopping racing full time I think I’ve discovered I enjoy riding my bike more than I realised! A big part is the social side, riding with mates, Briggsy or Ed. Almost everywhere you go you’ve got a network of friends you’ve met on the bike. Group rides are a big part of that - going out on group rides and café rides and chatting to people,
I enjoy the competition of riding with mates. I also enjoy the different disciplines. Sometimes when you do one to the exclusion of all else, you can get tired of it and become saturated on one discipline. Now I enjoy road, cyclo-cross, mountain biking, then playing around on dirt jumps with friends.”
“The best thing about riding a bike is the sense of freedom. You can get a long way on a bike in a couple of hours. I also love the social side. Cafe stops are one of the best bits of riding your bike - having a break and catching up with other cyclists.”