I’ve been wanting to get more into cycling recently. I’ve been talking for ages about just hopping on a Boris Bike (AKA Santander Cycles; it’ll never stick) and get exploring some of London’s best cycling routes.
That’s because I’m a glutten for punishment.
I don’t have the most padded posterior, so I’ve always found cycling painfully uncomfortable (ladies, you know what I’m talking about – men, probably more so). The saddle is just such a weird shape. And hard. And bendy. It just sucks, and other than buying padded shorts, I don’t know a good way to get around it. And it’s not like running, where I find I can’t really enjoy my surroundings because I’m concentrating on technique…I would LOVE to just jump on a bike and take in everything London has to offer.
My husband, a keen cyclist, keeps encouraging me to give it a go. The pain is temporary, he says. And actually, the more I’ve been doing it, the more I’ve found the bruising to lessen, and the shape of the seat actually curving around my body in a not entirely unpleasant way.
I’ve been giving spinning a go (or more accurately Boxer-Spin, a curious combination of boxing, circuits and short spinning bursts – seated climbs, standing attacks etc.) and to my chagrin, it turns out the husband is right, and it’s actually kind of fun. The bruises are less potent and the pain is temporary.
He’s been doing a few 20-mile rides along the Grand Union Canal – I’m not sure I’m ready to go just that far quite yet, but I am ready to go out into the world.
So, for inspiration, here’s a cool map I found on Time Out, created by Route Plan Roll (download for free on their website). I just need to pick one now and stick to it. And with the weather looking lush, and London’s parks rivalling the best in the world, I’m looking forward to starting exploring my new hobby.