Genes are a funny thing aren’t they. I’ve got green eyes and olive skin, yet my sister has blue eyes and fair skin…my brothers all have ginger beards, as does my son. How we look is something we just have no say in when we are born. But what goes on inside is also something we have no say in – I’m not talking about our emotions or our feelings. I’m talking about all that gooey stuff on the inside that controls how our body works – the stuff we don’t see like blood, chromosomes and even cholesterol.
That #bestnine on Instagram is a funny thing isn’t it…you let a computer algorithm decide your highlights for the year. It’s the anomaly that exists on social media that we post the best of ourselves, the way we want the world to see us: the Wheel Women #bestnine is a glorious exposé of wins, success, fun, laughter and a little bit of adventure. But the saddest part is that I had to ask a friend to remind me what was great in the year almost gone.
No computer algorithm could remind me of the loss, the frustration, the hard work, the late nights, the disagreements, the tears…oh yes, and sometimes the incredible lack of tears behind the pictures. Fighting against that human spirit when it falls in a heap is like climbing a small Everest, and no algorithm will ever be able to detect the pain behind some of the pictures it selects as your #bestnine. Continue reading The winning…and the losing. So that was 2018.
It seems everyone’s favourite question for me at the moment is ‘Why did I take up cycling?’ I guess up until the diagnosis I received 4 weeks ago today, I’d have simply said ‘because it’s fun.’ I didn’t know 4 weeks ago today that my life would be different, forever…. Continue reading Riding for my life. Literally.
‘Hey Tina, thought of you when I saw this. You should apply’…and so went the 20 or so messages and emails from well meaning friends. But could I live up to the role of sharing my story for the This Girl Can – Vic? Nope, not gonna do that one!
Like so many I’d watched the UK This Girl Can campaign and was so overwhelmed by the power of the ads that there was no way I could be ‘one of them’. And besides, I had to make a video to submit as an application – I just knew there would be some super professional submissions. And what would I say…probably not much that anyone would care about. Continue reading ‘Fat chicks don’t wear lycra’…says who?
“If I could just stop all the heavy breathing I’d be happy, but hang on…it’s okay, I’m walking up a hill. This must be okay, anybody would puff up this hill. Gosh I’m so sweaty today too…it’s not that hot. But yep, I’m working out walking up this hill, it’s hard work, maybe I should get some leggings for this…I’m sure everyone puffs and pants up this one.” Continue reading The fear of not making 52…
We were talking about the essence of what made a great ride, what would be the pinnacle for us…exactly what would it take to get us there. It wasn’t tough criteria and actually it was unanimous about what was needed to tick the boxes. In fact, in many ways it seemed that we all agreed on something that was just so simple.
It’s a conversation I’ve had with a few close friends recently. Just exactly what does it take to excite the senses, ignite the fire in the belly, get the endorphins pumping and put that smile on the face that doesn’t go away for a long time. I was interested to know because I’ve struggled with having to re-think my riding plans for a little while now. My injuries are classified as ‘chronic’ now and if I’m to keep moving until I’m old, then I need to re-assess what will put that fire in the belly. Continue reading “One of the best rides of my life”
If only we took the time to really see the story in a picture and explore it’s depth, if only we knew the true stories behind the faces, then maybe the picture might hold more significance. This photo for me is not just a great picture taken by Georgie Wilson (@georginamonette), it is the story of courage, challenge, commitment and friendships forged through unlikely circumstances.
For a moment, my breath was taken away when I saw this: it reminded me of what Wheel Women is about and how far we have come in the just over 4 years we’ve been running, and what it means for all the women who have experienced the joy of a ride with us. I am lucky to know the extraordinary stories behind every rider. Continue reading The story behind the photo…
Pink has always been my colour…it’s just something that has stuck. And like a lot of things, they get stuck – including me.
It’s been a tough year I’ll admit – loss of passion, loss of friends, loss of motivation, injury, illness and a bunch of other crap that just seemed to always get in the way of a good time. I’ve struggled to keep fit, struggled to maintain a positive body image and been frustrated that I have not been able to ride as much as I would normally. Continue reading Finding the fire in your belly…my little New Year message!
Are you serious…that’s all it takes? So for just 45 minutes of my life I’ll be fit, healthy raring to go. Well bring on the active wear, hand me the sweat bands and let’s get this fitness thing sorted once and for all!
Forty five minutes…yep 45 minutes! As I rode past the call to action sign I couldn’t help but cast my mind back to the days when I was unfit – and trust me, it was longer than 45 minutes ago!
That’s me, several years ago before I set out on a path to feel better about myself…and me now, looking a whole lot happier about everything! It didn’t take 45 minutes…it’s taken years.
As she crossed the line at that 50km gantry at ride’s end, she was laughing, and smiling, and crying…all at the same time. The emotions flooded in and crossing the line was almost impossible as the tears clouded her vision and the laughter took her breath away. Exhausted, barely able to get off the bike and depleted of every last bit of energy, she did it…and she believed that 6 months ago she would never do this. We hugged as she suddenly burst into sobs of joy.