Feel Alive: Reasons to Cycle

Feel Alive: Reasons to Cycle

Cycling makes me feel so alive. Why?

The positive addiction.

An addiction with benefits. It’s a free gym on wheels. The satisfaction of a great workout. The feeling you get when conquering a mountain. The low impact on your body. The feeling of effortlessly getting fit. Being able to satisfy your vanity. Sculpted calves. Rock hard quads. Amazing legs. Being effortlessly lean. A healthy heart. The natural high.

There is no such thing as a bad ride.

Pre-ride coffee. Mid-ride coffee. Mid-ride lunch breaks. Post-ride pig-outs.The ability to eat whatever you want. The social aspect. The wonderfully positive people you will meet from all walks of life. The connection with people who share the same passion.

Versatility.

The fact that it’s considerably cheaper than a car and with many more benefits. Lowering your carbon footprint. Zipping joyfully by traffic jams. Riding to work and feeling on top of the world when you arrive. Extra energy. Better health. Better sleep. Better mind, body and soul. The undeniable fun.

The sense of freedom.

The wind in your hair. The feeling of being closely connected to your surroundings. The feeling of awe and inspiration when you ride past beautiful landscapes. The knowledge that being able to experience something this marvelous is so much better on a bicycle than in a car. Flying down the road on a 100% human-powered machine. Losing yourself in your thoughts and self-reflection. The magical phenomenon of all your problems melting away and feeling absolutely at peace. Escaping the stress of every day life. Not being able to stop smiling. Feeling so blessed.

Happiness.

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    Goodbye for now, my Dear…

    Goodbye for now, my Dear…

    I made it a point this summer to be as free as I can and one way to achieve freedom was to ride the crap out of my bike… and that I did.

    This week marks the unofficial “end” of my cycling season for 2014 because I’m leaving for Asia next Saturday, until mid-November, where, to my dismay, I will have to use my legs for the entirety of the time (instead of my two wheels). I’m sure I’ll be back on the saddle for the remainder of the year for short and hard rides, commutes and chasing the sun whenever I can but I don’t foresee time for anymore “epic” rides. The sun rises too late, sets too early and since I’ll be crunching at work and the holidays will be upon us when I get back, I’ll have no time to ride long distances during the week. Time to start being a responsible adult again.

    Time spent on a bicycle is priceless.

    Ever since I got back from my seven week escape in Europe, all I’ve been doing is having the time of my life, out dancing with my friends, drinking lots of coffee, eating lots of cake and of course, riding my bike. I rode 4500 kilometers this past summer with tons of long, epic and fun rides— just the way I like it. Every week, as I progressed on my bike and learned more about my body and proper nutrition (for endurance cycling), I fell in love with the sport even more.

    Can I say this summer was perfection?

    Cypress Lookout | West Vancouver, BC

    Dark rain clouds were hovering over West & North Vancouver where we were riding but the sun was shining gracefully on downtown Vancouver and beyond. Yesterday’s ride was my last time up at the Cypress Mountain lookout in West Vancouver this year. Fall is here, the snow will cover the mountain soon and although climbing that mountain is always heavenly [painful], the freezing descents still cannot be justified… unless someone will volunteer to drive me and my bike down!

    After 65,000 meters of climbing mountains this summer, my arch-nemesis: my IT-Band, finally caught up with me. As we were doing a slow recovery ride to Deep Cove for lunch yesterday, my left knee started hurting again, but I must say, I did really well taking care of my body this summer. The discomfort showed up at the right time— right as I am about to take 3 weeks off the bike and gym. This year, I cut down my lifting sessions, did almost zero full-body high intensity interval training, stopped doing the my weekly Grouse Grinds that I’ve been doing every summer the past three years …and spent the majority of the time on two wheels. The past couple of weeks, I started incorporating more heavy lifting and leg days because I’ve been doing less riding due to the weather and random festivities and I suspect that’s the main culprit. And the fact that I have not been stretching and rolling as much as I should. And I totally ignored the RMT’s recommendation of getting work done for my super tight quads and hip-flexors. Uh, no thanks. I am annoyingly ticklish and I may end up kicking them in the face if they touch my legs! I swear I will get my stretching game back on…
    Recent Cycling Adventures | I Fucking Love Fitness

    Recent adventures in and around Vancouver // Notice the cloudy skies? Fortunately, the sun did occasionally grace us with its presence. It’s amazing how you can be at one end of your city where the autumn storm clouds are threatening the peace … then you ride your bike 50 kilometers to the other end of the city, while enjoying all the benefits of good health, fitness, freedom and FUN, where it feels like summer all over again. That is pure bliss…

    I feel quite sad about leaving my bikes at home while I go seek adventures on the other side of the world but I know I will live in the moment and have the time of my life while I’m there.

    Goodbye for now, my dear…

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      Reasons to Cycle in the Fall

      Reasons to Cycle in the Fall

      It is officially fall in Vancouver and despite the unpredictable skies and me obsessively checking the weather so I can squeeze in more epic bike rides before the end of this month, I still think it’s the best time to ride your bike. We’ve been experiencing our typical wet and gloomy Vancouver Octobers but us, Vancouverites, seem to complain too much and often forget to appreciate the little things that makes our city so wonderful— like our typical phases of sunny-splendor that we experience randomly throughout the year. Like today. And yesterday. And the day before that. It is supposed to rain this weekend but let’s soak in the rays Mr. Sun has been generously radiating down on us, shall we? I know I’ll be out for another early morning ride tomorrow morning. What about you?

      I Fucking Love Fitness

      Unfortunately, cycling in the fall means getting caught out in the rain as well… which means more roadside problems. But the pros outweigh the cons!

      Here are some reasons to cycle in the fall:

      1. It’s not too hot. It’s not too cold.

      I get by with my bike shorts, a long-sleeved base layer, vest and gloves. Gloves!! Keeping my fingers warm is the key (and full-fingered gloves means no tan lines on my fingers). Proper gear can make any ride enjoyable.

      2. The crisp autumn air.

      Cycling in the winter is tough, especially when your lungs starts to feel like a block of ice and you’re gasping for air while climbing the first big hill on the way to work (and not to mention your face mask which is partly suffocating you). And when you think about all those hot, humid summer bike rides where tan lines are being hideously burnt into your vain skin (ugh), the crisp and cool autumn air makes you appreciate fall cycling a lot more.

      3. The sunshine.

      Because you know it’s not summer anymore, sunshine during the fall or winter in Vancouver feels extra special. It’s so beautiful. Why would you want to spend it in the car or on a bus?

      4. You can get to work and not be a disgusting, sweaty mess.

      Unless your workplace is at the top of a hill like mine and for some reason, you always end up killing yourself up the hill even when you plan to ride “leisurely” — like today for example, when I was “racing” Fixie Dude and Old Mountain Bike Man. Old Mountain Bike Man ended up kicking both our asses but to justify it, I had just finished a 60km hilly ride on my big ring the day after leg day (do not ask me why but this stupidity probably won’t ever happen again) and Fixie Dude had the most ginormous backpack ever… and he was killing it earlier trying to not let me pass him. Okay, maybe Old Mountain Bike Man was just really fucking fit. That is all.

      5. You can waste your energy riding instead of worrying about tan lines.

      Well, I kind of lied because I went out for a wet and gloomy 80km last weekend and I got tan lines!! It was worse than the ones I got all summer long… but at least I wasn’t worrying about it during the ride because I didn’t think such tragedy could happen on that murky day. Which maybe even worse because my assumption threw me off and I forgot to move the seams of my bike shorts around like I do in the summer (tan line prevention 101). LE SIGH.

      6. Take advantage of the weather before winter settles in.

      Sleeping in under my warm, snugly blanket sure is a lot more exciting than waking up and enduring the cold in the winter. It wasn’t as easy as summer time when the sun was up at 5am, but during the fall, I can still fortunately muster up plenty of motivation to get up before sun rise to squeeze a long ride in before work.

      Are you still riding your bike?

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