Riding into Retirement
I am a passionate cyclist. I don’t compete but I do wear lycra. I train, but only for my own satisfaction.
I took up riding about 5 years ago, by accident really. My son had joined the triathlon team at school so we were bike shopping (love bike shopping). As we did our research I found myself wanting to give it a go. So I took the plunge and bought a roadie, a mid level bike by Blue Competition Cycles, aluminium frame, 105 shimino gears. Good enough to get into it but not to scary an investment. A bit heavy up the hills, like me. My basic plan was to get fit enough to be able to ride with my brother who is also a mad keen cyclist.
So 5 years on and am riding every day that I can. For the first couple of years my wife was also riding but unfortunately, one winter she went into cycling hibernation and is still yet to emerge. Im now on bike number three, an R3 Cervelo, SRAM red, which it just a fantastic ride. Weighs about 6.7 kg. Mmmm, perhaps the subject of another post.
I find riding gives structure to my week now that I am no longer working. I ride 4-5 days a week, 2-3 hours at a time, plus a coffee stop. Weekend rides are with my brothers bunch.
Riding blows a bad or sad mood away although I do find myself getting grumpy if the weather is poor and I can’t get my km’s in. I take much inspiration from the older riders I see out on the road. Some of them over 70 and still going hard. In fact my brother has just turned 60 and is a fitter rider than myself.
I find a common question when people learn I am retired at 48 is, “don’t you get bored”. I tell them about riding, amongst other activities but usually get a quizzical expression in reply. It keeps me fit, happy and healthy. I feel fortunate that I found my passion for riding before I was given the choice not to work, it helped make the leap.