‘Twas the winter of 2010, and I was feeling pretty discontent with my crunchy knees and flabby bingo wings. My supermodel Giselle-esque body was beginning to feel its age. Old.
I had a choice. Continue with my hardcore cake-eating regime, (it’s hard work looking this good,) or switch it up and try some of that there keep fit business shenanigans.
As tempting as it was just to take up a spot of lawn bowls … white is SO my colour … I decided that I would run instead. Made sense at the time.
I signed up for Race for Life and began my training. I put my poor, overweight, middle-aged body through months of torturous running, (aka slow jogging,) but was delighted to finish the race in one piece and raise a small amount of money for charity.
I’ve not run once since then.
Not once. Although, hang on, I do believe I may have broken out into a slight fast walk once when I thought the shops had closed and I really needed some Haagen Daz. That counts right?
So, why did I stop running? Without a purpose, I found it hard to go out running again. Plus, running was just so damned hard! I could have easily signed up for another race, but .. well, I didn’t want to.
*Hangs head and eats another scone.*
Fast forward to a month ago. There I was, moaning about doing the washing up again … (moaning? Me? That’s not *cough* like me at all …,) and I spied my poor blue and yellow mountain bike sticking out from behind the brown garden refuse bin.
I bought it four years ago and I’ve never used it. Literally … never used it. Bad WitWitWoo!
So this bike is now staring at me … taunting me … laughing at my lack of willpower and cellulite ridden fat arse.
Oh it’s ON!
I picked it up, (well, asked my Other Half to – I wasn’t strong enough,) shoved it in the boot of the car and took it to my nearest Halfords. You wanna taunt me? Really? I’ll show you who’s boss. (Yeah, I talk to inanimate objects. Had many a pleasant conversation with the self-service till at my local Tescos.)
£50 later, I was now the proud owner of a slightly rusty, but working mountain bike.
Now what? I hadn’t ridden a bike for 27 years.
Twenty seven years!
To be honest, I was a little nervous. Falling off a bike as a 14-year old is no big thing. Transverse those numbers and we’re probably talking a broken hip.
Having spent most of my childhood whizzing around on my mint green racer, I didn’t think getting back in the saddle would be as difficult as it was. See, I have no core strength whatsoever. This kinda makes cycling tricky, especially if you want to stand up and pedal … I found out the hard way when I cycled into the back of a Transit van.
Ironically, I did the exact same thing when I was 12 years old. I’d been sent to the shops to buy 40 Benson & Hedges by my Mum … don’t ask … and ended up with two carrier bags full of shopping on my bike handlebars. (“Just get a few pints of milk and a loaf of bread while you’re out love.”) So I thought the best thing to do as I cycled home, would be to … read a newspaper. Looking back, not the most normal of things to do. It was only a matter of time before I fell down a pot hole or rode into the back of a Transit van. I did the latter.
You’d think I’d have learnt a valuable lesson back then, wouldn’t you?
Anyway, cycling is the new running chez WitWitWoo … we’ll see how long it lasts.
Lance Armstrong I ain’t … but you never know – cycling might just be ‘my thing.’ Or it might not. Time will tell.