My first proper year in road cycling
In 2019 I dipped my toe into the road cycling world, but I struggled to find the time to put into it with commitments to work and playing amateur rugby. Ironically, the motivation that brought me to put me out a lot more time and effort into cycling in 2020 was a rugby group on Strava to keep us going whilst in the first lockdown. I found I really enjoyed cycling as is a sport that I will defiantly be keeping up with.
I have found there are many ups with cycling but also the downs such as calling your girlfriend at 7am on a Sunday morning to come and pick you up as you have had a mechanical issue . Or when you are trying to fit a new inner tube after a puncture in the rain when your hands are freezing cold. Biting off more than you can chew is a lesson you learn also after a ride in Scotland which I will get to later can be an issue when they last 5 kilometres feel like an eternity to get back home!
Here are my favourite rides this year
After a month or so on my old bike I decided it was time to upgrade to a newer and more reliable bike, I chose the pinnacle laterite 1 2020. This is by no means the worlds best bike but is more than enough for my current abilities. The first major ride I did on the bike was up the local cycling beauty spot of Cragg Vale in Mytholmroyd. a long tough climb to get up the moorlands but once you are there the views are more than worth it. Cragg Vale is proudly claiming to be the longest continuous gradient in England with 295 meters of climbing in 9km, it is a long drag at an average of 3% but the descent back down in to the village of Ripponden is more than worth it with a fairly flat ride into Copley via Sowerby bridge completing a 38km ride.
My proudest accomplishment of the year was my first 50km ride with 650 meters of elevation gain that took me from my home in Huddersfield through the small surrounding towns. A mixed bag of a route but incredibly fun with fast descents and hills to slog away on. As always, the views are always worth it in the part of the country
My favourite ride of the year must be my trip to Scotland where I road from near Kilmarnock to the Irvine coast in a 46km ride with 310 meters of elevation gain. This was my first time riding out of England as I really enjoyed the change of scenery from the normal and the halfway break on the seafront in Irvine was worth it. Not everything went to plan on this ride as I took a wrong turn in unfamiliar surroundings and ended with slogging up a steep hill for this few km which was torture on the legs.