My Simply Cycling Experience by….. Mary Foley

Last summer I signed up to the first ever Simply Cycling with Ratoath Wheelers. I was a runner with too many aches and pains so I decided to give cycling a go. I roped in a friend (dear Leanne) so that I wouldn’t be alone. I needn’t have worried, the social side of simply cycling would suit even the shyest amongst us.

Of course I had my fears, first of which was “What if they go too fast?” Not a problem, NOBODY GETS LEFT BEHIND and that is a religion with the Ratoath Wheelers.
There was mention of 20, 30, 40 and even 50km cycles! How in the world can I do that? To be honest, I was amazed at how much I improved and how much strength I gained in just 6 weeks. Small hills that I found tough on week one were, for want of a better word, SIMPLE by the time I completed the course.

The format was pretty simple…..deja vu anyone? – We would be put into groups with an experienced pair of riders. One person would lead us and the other would take up the rear and keep a watchful eye out for us and the road behind. Safety was paramount and although we were being taught how so cycle safely on the roads, we could do so in the knowledge that we had two experts watching out for us at all times.

We cycled on quiet back roads and laneways, many of which were completely unknown to this Ratoath native. There is something very special about spending a weekend morning cycling through our beautiful countryside, oh and did I mention that cycling burns calories like an inferno!

I enjoyed taking on a new challenge and learning new things but I have to say I enjoyed the social side of cycling most of all. On every cycle you will get the chat with every other person in your group – that is how cycling works. One rainy day I dreaded our 30 km cycle but it was over in a flash because I didn’t stop chatting from start to finish. We also stop for tea and scones on longer cycles (30km +). 

At the end of the course some of us ladies were encouraged to take on The Lap of Louth road race, which a few of us did. It was a fantastic day, I felt a great sense of achievement and we were cheered on by some of the wonderful men in the Wheelers.

If you have seen the ads for this year’s Simply Cycling course and you are wondering if it is for you just ask yourself these questions, 1. Do I like to chat? 2. Do I like fun? 3. Do I want to try something new and challenging with the full support of those around me? If you answered yes to even one of those questions then the answer is simple…..or should I say the answer is Simply Cycling.

We will be running beginners sessions every Sunday morning for six weeks commencing Sunday April 16th and you can find more information here

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