It was late Summer i got interested in road cycling. I had never done it before, but after watching the Olympics I wanted to give it a try. I was taken out on my first ride around late August and I loved it. I had never been on a road bike before so I was very nervous, but once I was out there I loved every minute. I had never tackled so many hills in my life as I had that day – which seem so simple now, and it was such a rewarding feeling once it was over. Thats when I knew this is what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.
In the past few months I have attended various different sessions – some challenging but worth it, and others fun. I’ve been to a couple at Ingliston where I’ve learnt to ride in small groups on a circuit, overcome my fear of corners, and also make great friends. I’ve also learnt during a team discussion what foods I should really be eating and what to start cutting out of my diet. I took the nutritional advice I got given and started applying it and I now feel healthier and better about myself. I also attend a Thursday night weight training session where I can see I’m getting stronger as I come away feeling very successful every week, and also wake up the next morning in a bit of pain which shows I have done my best. After my weight training I go straight to rollers where I easily learnt how to cycle on a roller with help and motivation of others. These two sessions have improved my fitness massively and I enjoy going to them every week to see what I can accomplish.
A few weeks ago I tried out a training session at Arthurs Seat where you had to climb to the top and descent back down in the dark six times. I struggled a lot as I couldn’t even get halfway up before getting off my bike, and I just had to go home. This is when I told myself I had to work harder and not give up over one difficulty. I got out on my bike as much as I could since then and tackled the steepest hills I could find. I recently went back to Arthurs Seat and managed to climb it no problem. This experience has shown me that hard work does pay off and when things don’t go right, you never give up.
The best part of joining ERC is being able to go out every Saturday morning with groups of very encouraging adults and cycle distances and interesting routes I never thought I would be able to do in a million years. It’s built my confidence being able to talk and make conversation with experienced riders who have gave me helpful tips of riding. These rides have also helped me see what it’s like to meet new people who share the same interests as me. I enjoy the company of the groups every week as they help me strive to do my best and show a lot of interest in me too.
I am really looking forward to participating in some races next season as the hard work I’m putting myself through now will hopefully pay off when it comes to racing.
Thank you to everyone who has made me feel so welcome into the club and made me so determined to reach my goals. Big thanks to our coach Jarlath Flynn who’s supported me throughout these first few months and putting so much effort into the team as a whole, and finally thank you to Juli Rourke who put me on a bike in the first place and giving me all the help and advice I needed to get to this point. I appreciate everything everyone has done for me and can’t wait to see what the future holds!