So, bikes have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. From the three wheeler when I was 2yrs old, to recovering my first BMX from the local Lido that the boys had specially located for me overnight, to my adult years and the introduction into road cycling.
I had always been sporty, not to any great level but always enjoyed being active in the outdoors, the fresh air and landscapes along the way. Cycling had periodically been a part of my life to different degrees and I particularly liked the different disciplines of triathlons. Sadly, I had to take a change of direction on sport, when I suffered from hip pain and any impact sport, such as running had to be ruled out. After this I found myself wanting to do more swimming and cycling and I googled cycling clubs in the nearby area.
I was immediately struck by the competitive nature of some clubs, the focus of how fast or how far they wanted to go, which was pretty scary for someone not at that level. Growing up in mid wales, being a part of a community was natur
al to me and I was looking for a club that had a social culture, as well as cycling on the beautiful country roads.
I searched again, found Dittons Velo and decided to launch in, call them up and meet the gang for my first ride. It was Sunday, so only three others riding and the forecast wasn’t great. I nearly cancelled, probably nerves but I had a good feeling about it and I wasn’t wrong. About a half hour into the ride the heavens opened up, we took shelter under a tree and after several miles of beautiful Surrey hills were headed home soaking. The next time I went out, everyone welcomed me with open arms. The Saturday group was much bigger and there were more women of similar experience, which I was pleased about.
I can honestly say the ride was amazing, not only had I not cycled in the areas we went to, I found the group friendly, encouraging, giving me good advice along the way and I couldn’t wait to go back the following week. I would have never believed the mileage that I built up over a short period and I have met such lovely people, who I now call friends.
If you are looking for a club with different options to cycle hard, long distance or simply enjoy getting fit in our beautiful countryside and of course the cakes at the tops of all those Surrey hills, it’s the one for you.
I have built up so many memories over my two years, including cycling amongst the vineyards in champagne, France (albeit with a few stops of a glass or two), achieving sportives that I never dreamed of but most of all getting to know all the different kinds of people in the club. I can honestly say it would not be the same without them holding onto their ethos of a friendly, helpful club.
At the moment, I’m in recovery after hip surgery but that’s given me an excuse to buy a new road bike – nothing will stop be getting back out on that bike with the Dittons Velo soon.