Reaching new heights!

It’s nine months to the day that I started cycling again after my long break and I’d like to take a little time with this post and talk about how far I’ve come over that time.

My first tentative steps back into my favourite sport began back in April and my rides consisted of coastal excursions, which specifically avoided any and all inclines as if my life depended on it! My elevation would be around 130m-500m but these astronomical heights are only brought about by the undulating nature of the road + distance travelled. Now, I thoroughly enjoy these rides, with the Atlantic ocean lapping the shore on one side and towering peaks looming ominously on the other. Those peaks cannot be ignored forever and delightful pleasant coastal roads can quickly become somewhat mundane…


My reasons (excuses) for avoiding them before came from a deep dark fear of failing. I was afraid of heading up one of those monsters and find myself having to dismount, put tail between legs and head home…the fear was palpable…

I decided to face my fear and chose a hill that I’d heard a lot about, “in fact it is the highest peak in the immediate area” and being within cycling distance was ripe for the picking! Strava measures it at 620m Elevation 11.1km Length 6% Gradient. To read about this epic climb and find out if I made it…click the link below!

Epic Climb

It wasn’t until my father came who is now the other side of 70 that I saw the need to head for the hills with more vigour! During our rides together he would easily waltz away from me on all but the easiest climb, so I took it upon myself to embrace the mountainous terrain of my adoptive land and quickly found that I actually enjoyed it. Of course, the GIANT and its 39×28 setup is a far cry from the MMR’s 39×26. It may not seem like a lot but throw in the GIANT’s 2.5kg weight difference and things certainly become more interesting. Obviously the GIANT has made it easier for me to summit the peaks and while well being is generally preferable to suffering…if it’s not hurting, it’s not working 😉

I’m now averaging 4000 m Elevation a week and love searching out new climbs and having the locals lead me on mystery rides where you never know what’s round the next corner…


P.S. I have since changed the cassette on the MMR and will be posting about this soon!



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