My Book

 

It has been a long journey…

13 years ago, I met my bike.  Up to the point of this pivotal meeting I was the least athletic person in the world!!! I had no belief in my physical being.  At times, I was completely uncomfortable in my own skin.  I would experience a lot of anxiety in many situations, and simply wished I could blend into the wall.

My bike changed me life.  It helped me to find a strong, capable physical side to my being that I never knew existed.  It took me on adventures to new worlds and cultures.  It took me deep into nature where I could connect with earth in a way I had never experienced. It introduced me to new friendships that would have otherwise been undiscovered.  It took me to a place where my mind, body and soul melded into one and worked together to get me to the tops of mountains one pedal stroke at a time.

How a girl with no connection to her physical being could cycle to the tops of mountains belonging to the Tour de France pros I will never totally comprehend.  All I know is that I get out there and I find a freedom that I never knew.

What is your passion?  What do you long to do but are terrified to try?

Today IS that day that you take the first step.

IF I can do it, SO CAN YOU !!!

Just a Girl and a Bike – the book

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Fast and Gracious: Mel the Running Rabbit

{Welcome back my feature series on those who have inspired me on my journey.  Today’s post is about one the fastest, most dedicated athletes I know.  And, everyone loves her because she exudes positivity, encouragement and support.  If you missed Strength and Spirit, My Warrior Friend be sure to check it out!!!}

The other day, as I finished one of my regular, moderate runs, I glanced at my running watch to see that I had accomplished about 5 km in about 34 minutes.  Not bad, fairly consistent – I was happy with that.  As I uploaded my data, I browsed around on Facebook, and came across Melissa’s results for the 10 km race she had just finished that morning.  She had reached her goal, a personal best, and a time of 39:10 for 10 km!!!  Wow, I thought.  How does she do that?

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Melissa full of winning attitude

I am constantly thinking how does she do that when it comes to Melissa.  It just seems that she is always accomplishing another amazing win!  She has been most known for her running.  She has been competing at many distances for a long time.  Since I have met her, she has continuously expanded her horizons.  She took on the road racing world with a bang.  With only two seasons under her belt, she has already moved up a category and has multiple podium finishes.  She has taken on cross country skiing with zest, and recently entered the world of cross biking.  The whole time, she is chasing down and challenging her equally speedy husband, Reinier, who is clearly the passion of her life.  During a recent foot injury when she could not bike or run, she focused on swimming – something that she knew nothing about.  She simply looks at something, and does it. Continue reading “Fast and Gracious: Mel the Running Rabbit”

Learning to Ride a Road Bike – An Adventure in Hitting the Ground

I have been road cycling for 13 years now.  It has been an incredible journey.  My bike has literally changed my life.

Before I met my bike (my beloved Trek 2000), I was the most unathletic person ever!!!  I wouldn’t have believed for a second that I was one day going to be riding a fast bike on highways and up to the tops of mountains.  I was completely uncomfortable with my physical being, and afraid of adventure.

Right after I married my husband, James, he bought us road bikes.  It had been a passion of his in his younger years, and he was keen to re-immerse himself.  I really had absolutely no idea what I was getting into.

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Continue reading “Learning to Ride a Road Bike – An Adventure in Hitting the Ground”

The Influence of Cycling – Jonathan Deguzman

My feature series on those who have inspired me on my journey continues and stays strong.  In my last post, I introduced you to an amazing rider who supported me and helped my confidence to grow, Dehnis B Delacruz.  Today’s post is a follow up to share some of the amazing work that Dehnis is doing in the cycling community.

Take a few minutes and watch the documentary that Dehnis created on an amazing cyclist, Jonathan Deguzman.  I have never met Jonathan, but when I watched this I felt like I knew him.  I was so touched by his genuine responses, and how he conveyed that regardless of the level or ability, we all come to cycling for very similar reasons.  Jonathan was so authentic in his responses, and Dehnis’ work in capturing this was absolutely brilliant.

Thanks to Jonathan for sharing his journey, and to Dehnis for seeing this opportunity and putting in the work to capture it!

 

 

This documentary can also be found here: The Influence of Cycling – Jonathan Deguzman

{If you enjoyed reading this, you can read more posts or follow me at Just a Girl and a Bike}

 

 

A Smooth Riding Companion: Dehnis B DelaCruz

{My feature series on those who have inspired me on my journey continues and stays strong.  Today I introduce you to an amazing rider who supported me and helped my confidence to grow.  If you are curious, be sure to check out this Slowburn post.}

The alarm starting beeping way too early, but out of bed I leaped.  I was pumped.  I had been waiting all week for this.  This morning, I would be joining my beloved Slowburn group once again after many years.

The feat would not be easy.  We would be doing the famous Great Western Loop – A.K.A. GWL.  This ride would see us climb almost 1200 metres and cover nearly 70 km.  The climbing starts almost immediately, and most of it is accomplished in the first 2/3 of the ride.  So,  you literally feel like you are climbing, climbing, climbing…

As the group began to gather, a felt a twinge of excitement edged with a bit of nervousness.  No matter how many rides I completed, I just never knew exactly how I would feel until I started pedaling.  So many things can happen in cycling, so you just never really know what a ride is going to be like.  It seemed like it wasn’t that long ago that I couldn’t even fathom riding a road bike, never mind take on the ride that I was about to embark on.

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Me, Matt Tabaya to my right, Dennis Caco and James Hiner up front.  Dehnis was behind us, and took this beautiful photo.

 

Continue reading “A Smooth Riding Companion: Dehnis B DelaCruz”

Quote Challenge Day 1: Face Your Fear

Thank you to Natalie from But Why for nominating me for this wonderful quote challenge.

“You call yourself a free spirit, a ‘wild thing’, and you’re terrified somebody’s gonna stick you in a cage’.

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I love this quote.  I love it for many reasons.  I love this quote because it so accurately captures the essence of Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.  She is a young woman, living alone in New York City, putting on a brave face as she struggles to look after herself, let alone the cat that she has taken in.  The cat’s name is Cat to symbolize her belief that we as people do not own each other or other living beings.  She displays a fierce attitude of independence, yet, she is terrified and barely making it.  Her biggest fear is depending on someone else.  Fred Baby, her only real friend and the man that she is falling for, bravely looks her in the eyes and tells her the truth.

I also love this quote because I think that many people can interpret it through their own eyes and within the context of their own lives.

It reminds me so completely of my own fear.  I want more than anything to get on my bike and climb another mountain.  Before a climb day, I am full of fire and complete confidence.  When I get to the mountain, and look up at the monstrous beast staring me down, my true fear seeps from my pores, and I am reminded of how insignificant I am.  Yet, I refuse to be caged inside.  I would rather face my fear of what can happen on that mountainside than stay home.

Check out Natalie’s insightful quotes starting with Natalie’s Quote Challenge Day 1.

I now nominate Anthony from Today’s Perfect Moment and Paul from Life Changes.

The rules: Post three quotes across three different days, link to my blog, and nominate two new folks, if you choose to do so.

 

My More Aggressive Twin: Kate

{Welcome to my feature series on those who have inspired me on my journey.  Today’s post is about someone who with intense drive and motivation to overcome real challenges.  If you missed The Dark Horse, Grit and Determination, or a Guide on My Journey, be sure to check them out!}

I met Kate in Belgium.  My husband, James, and I were there for classics week.  We would be attempting amateur versions and watching the real professional versions of several of the hardest one day races in the world.  Little did I realize at the time how fitting it would be to meet Kate in such a setting.

Kate is about the same height as me, or rather, has the same lack of height as I do!  At four foot ten, we can hardly brag about our stunted stature.  At the time, her hair was nearly the same colour and length as mine was.  The icing on the cake was her punchy attitude that matched my own.  She was very quickly deemed to be my ‘more aggressive twin’.  Everyone in the group that we were staying with agreed with this, despite the fact that we had known each other for less than a week.

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Me on the left, Kate in the middle, our gracious host Holly on the right.

Continue reading “My More Aggressive Twin: Kate”

Who is the Dark Horse

{Welcome to my feature series on those who have inspired me on my journey.  If you missed last week’s post Racing with the Dark Horse, be sure to check it out.}

QuoteWhen I first met the Dark Horse, he led me through a ride that had me digging deep to reach speeds that I didn’t know I could ride at.  He was one of the most courteous, professional and talented riders I had ever met.  He supported me and pushed me to reach further and ride harder.

There is so much more to the Dark Horse. Continue reading “Who is the Dark Horse”

My Magical Wand

Look what made its way into my life….

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Thanks to a very special fairy who believes in my writing journey, I now have this special token to remind me daily that people are touched by my message.

She said it was magic and that I am magic.

I hope that my writing will become magical.

Believe in yourself today 🙂

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