Friday, July 27, 2012

Fortnightly Fitness Fridays - A jumbo bike ride

I was rather delighted to discover how many of you share my startling, jumpy tendencies. Next time I get a fright from my water bottle, I will almost feel normal! And who knew so many partners moved stealthily about the house?

Today, I'm moving back into the fortnightly fitness Friday theme - skipped last fortnight because there were more pressing matters on my mind. It feels appropriate to return today, with the 2012 Olympic games officially kicking off this evening. I am extraordinarily excited. I am also looking forward to the media (hopefully) moving on from their pre-games dribble, which has seemed to revolve around athlete spats and minor administrative challenges. I can't even bring myself to talk about the Liesel Jones weight debate, which is so ridiculous it is almost sickening. Clearly the media is ready for the sport to start too.

It's not quite at Olympic standards, but my focus today is on a bike ride that, for us, was on a mammoth scale.


Some of you probably ride 30km on a regular basis, and do it in well under 2 hours to boot. For me, though,  it is rather a long way.

In Perth, there is a freeway (motorway) north and a freeway south. Both freeway stretches have accompanying train lines, and also cycle paths that either run alongside the freeway or are parallel to it not far off. Lycra clad cyclists routinely ride 'to the end of the freeway and back' as a casual start to their Saturday morning. 

We're not lycra clad cyclists, but for some time we have planned to catch the train along the northern freeway stretch and then cycle back in again.


A fortnight ago, we did it, helped along by clear skies, cool temperatures, and an afternoon with nowhere we needed to be.

This was the weekend after my grandfather died, and it was exactly the activity I needed. The sunshine on my back, wind on my face, and delight in navigating 30km on our own steam was a lovely reminder of how enjoyable life can be, and how much I value activity and movement.

We got lost once (it turns out following a cycle path isn't always as straightforward as you'd think), encountered a few steep hills, rode through bushland as well as alongside cars, and stopped for a break at the 20km (ish) mark.


It wasn't a speedy ride, but it was a wonderful one.



Mr Bite doesn't know it yet, but I'm now setting my sights on doing the same thing on the southern freeway stretch...and that's 50km.

Have you enjoyed any out of the ordinary activities lately?

30 comments:

  1. Yay for the Olympics and not even going into the Liesl Jones debacle. Seriously just...stupid.

    Evs and I used to ride quite regularly to the city and back in the summer and that was a total of 42 km. It wasn't a speedy ride but it was fun. I definitely love the feeling of the wind and the movement as well... Good luck with the next one!

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    1. Thanks Sig :) The feeling of the wind and movement really is magical. And your 42km ride sounds very impressive!

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  2. Hooray for cycling! I do 50km regularly every weekend - I love it :)

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  3. I've heard that in Perth it's so much easier to cycle than it is in Sydney. I've heard you have great cycle paths so you don't have to ride on the road. This is a wonderful way to get your exercise. I hope you enjoy the cycling during the cooler months xx

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    1. Thanks Charlie, and I think you're right in our bike path situation. There are some good networks here and not too many hills, which is always a bonus!

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  4. So glad that you enjoyed the bike ride! I hate to admit it, but I have a bike just resting in my garage. :( I am sure that I would be addicted if I would just get on it. :)
    I am so glad that it was just what you needed. ;)

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    1. Thanks Brandi! My bike goes for long periods of rest between outings too, so hopefully I can keep the riding up while I'm into it :P

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  5. I'm sooo excited for tonight!! I'm going to watch it with bunch of girlfriends..it's going to be fun!! ;)
    Whoa! Good for you! You know the last bike I rode had training wheels attached to it. I think I'm still traumatized from the time when I almost drowned. I was young, doing silly things, and I rode my bike around the swimming pool wo adult supervision. But you know, I am older, wiser, and more coordinated now..Should give it another chance :)

    Out of ordinary activities...not much here. I don't exactly "live outside the box." I haven't been wearing my mouthguard to bed since I haven't been too pleased with the hubby's attitude lately. Apparently my teeth grinding is out of this world.

    Have fun tonight!!

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    1. Oh my gosh - that cycling experience would traumatise me too. I'm glad you came out of it ok! Definitely give it another chance now you're older and wiser :)

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  6. I have picked up biking too! I did about 20 miles on Tuesday on the Centennial Trail in Spokane. It is a nice paved trail that starts North of Spokane and goes all the way into North Idaho. I think it is around 40 ish miles. I also run on it a lot for my long marathon training runs. My husband drops me off in Idaho and I run to Spokane. :-)

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    1. Wow, that is impressive! Impressive on a bike and even more so on foot!

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  7. Yay! I am impressed!
    For some reason, me and biking just don't go hand in hand. :)
    Lately, I have been trying a boxing class which is definitely out of the ordinary but it's fun to change it up.

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    1. Ooh, very fun! Kick boxing is something I've always wanted to do and never have...I really should change that.

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  8. I wish I had somewhere to keep a bike in my apartment!

    lately i've been really into fitness classes. i've noticed that they're giving me the changes i have always wanted :)

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    1. Fitness classes are good for that :)

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  9. All I need is a little seat for Misty and I too shall ride like the wind once more ;)

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    1. And I bet Misty would love it too!

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  10. for me, that WOULD be an oly sized bike ride!! hehe...great job and ummm, i hope u're excited as me for the Oly running events! :)

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  11. wow! sounds like it was a great ride! way to go!

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  12. Wow, sounds like a great ride, nice work. Perth is one of my favorite all-time cities so very jealous of your glorious bike ride!

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    1. I'm so thrilled to think that you know Perth! Thanks so much for stopping by :)

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  13. that sounds wonderful - I wish E liked riding with me - because I would love to do some longer rides - though I am a bit shy of the hills as Melbourne is quite flat where I usually cycle. I am sure it would be just what you needed after your grandfather died

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    1. I used to be so avoidant of hills that I am still surprised when I manage to cycle up them. Mind you, Perth is fairly flat too in most places, so I suspect my idea of a hill may not match that of someone in a truly hilly place! Maybe as Sylvia gets older she can provide a riding companion?

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  14. Wow that is certainly a serious ride. It has been about 20 years since I owned a bike. Last year we spent a day riding in Vietnam and I really felt it. Have a bike again is one of those things I aspire to but realistically think may happen in about 10 years time when (hopefully) we have kids who want to ride and need supervision. I can learn to ride again as they learn for the first time. I bet they learn faster!

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    1. I'm sure there's a saying about bike riding being non-forgettable...;) Riding in Vietnam would have been an experience and a half, what a wonderful way to see the country.

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  15. Cycling is such a great activity, especially when you have a nice trail to ride along and 30kms is a pretty decent distance when you're not used to it. I've been out of the habit for so long but I'm getting back into it now as I have our dog to motivate me. We did 15kms with him last weekend and I was a little bit sore from that. I wanted to comment earlier on this but couldn't until I finished my blog post.

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    1. Thanks so much for coming back to comment Mel! I imagine Ollie would be a very eager companion on your rides now :)

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