1 girl 4 boys & 3 gorges

ImageI love riding with boys.  I can’t help it. I’ve read that most women enjoy the social aspect, which I understand too. But I also totally get that macho responsive need to whip lycra butt. I must sadly confess to slight euphoric sensations when my group of ‘rogue riders’ take on a peloton of logo emblazoned big-boys. With my two crazy Italian friends often taking lead, I push boundaries of my riding. And this is the best. You can always push pedals harder or faster, turn quicker and descend better. Small tricks and skills are only improved through experience and risk. Its not something that happens on all my groups. Its not even something I need every time I ride. But I’m really lucky to have found such a variety of people with skills and styles.

The plan with the boys yesterday was to explore the three gorges – Galston Goprge, Berowra & Bobbin Head. We succeeded to get a few pic’s along the way. This is such a gorgeous area – both stunning and at times technical. Image

This 120km from Sydney includes many sharp, deep descents followed by curvy steep inclines.


Three Gorges - Galston, Berowra, Bobbin Head

Three Gorges – Galston, Berowra, Bobbin Head

I like to conserve my energy and up the bigger hills I’m prone to the Cadel Evans grind. I patiently wait for the other cycling testosterone-fueled enthusiasts to burn out before any last hilly bends. A bit of a nod and a smiley ‘good morning to you’ sadly boosts my ego. I do refrain from throwing my arms up, but a bit of a fist pump doesn’t go astray. Yes, our bums may need different chamois, and my handlebars may indeed be smaller than yours, but when I whip butt I can later embellish and boast over my win with a dark beer as good as any of the boys. And don’t get me started about ‘female specific’ stuff. Eeek, that’s a pothole I can break a spoke in during a future post.Image

Training Ride


I always love the adventure ‘mystery’ rides on Friday. I get to visit the beach, see the sunrise and be in the company of the most fabulous group of cycling women. Today our experimental bunch made it to Maroubra via Coogee Coastline.



The most magnificent views wait on the top of some seriously feisty hills around this area. The dozen of us carved those lumps on Alison Road like pro’s. And, while Beach Street threw up its nasty high-grade incline, the unsuspecting battlers won the day. Getting our breath back we pedaled on towards what we affectionately call, the Wall. This one is a grating steep ‘pain in the butt’ if you start on the wrong gear. Um. not too many did that.. moving on.

ImageIts good to look around and smell the roses. We reached Maroubra Beach and noted the blue ocean patiently waving at us. After getting a photo of our general awesomeness we pushed back to the Rapha Cycle Club. That Allpress Coffee gang roasting here in Sydney definitely make the hills worth climbing.

Thanks girls. I’m not sure you were aware of participating in my personal training regime – the smiles in those photos imply I failed to make you work hard enough 😉


Morning Glory and Sunglasses

So, the cells of my retina are being destroyed. Someone once said, ‘in times of destruction, create something’. Ive decided to create a growing population of sunglasses on my fridge. I count a dozen, and i don’t know where most of them come from. Most are seriously butt ugly and I can’t explain why at some point in time somebody actually chose to pay for them.

But, glasses keep out the sun, and good glasses protect eyes from ultra-violet and blue wavelength radiation. That’s a necessary combination for anyone spending hours outside.

My favorite riding specs are Salice Hot Pink 006 with the photochromic lenses. Image

They’re awesomely light. My head never grew beyond the size of a 4 year old. So its a pain to find anything to fit. These lookers do, and they come with:

  • Replaceable CRX – Photochromic lens adapts to changing light conditions
  • UV400 lens rating ensures protection against 100% of UVA, B and C rays
  • Anti-glare lens coating

Every ingredient is a good one. They may not be carbon, and they may not turn me into Liz Hatch, but they’re awesome anyhow.

PEDAL ALL DAY – Hills and… more hills

A fantastic 100km ride to Bobbin Head yesterday threw plenty of training hills into the mix. But today was also a great local ride round SouthHead Rd and up Vaucluse way with my favorite Monday training partner Abby.


As you can see, we enjoyed a coffee that waited for us in Maroubra. I keep being told to enjoy the spoils of Australian brew, because when I step off the Sydney tarmac I can kiss this goodbye. Surely it can’t be worse than the fake-milk variety I experienced in Germany?

Tomorrow, I ride to Palm Beach…Image

PEDAL ALL DAY – Looking after the Legs


Time ticks as my deadline to leave 15th October quickly approaches. With a few hundred clicks in my legs this week, those lunges and squats get harder every night.  But I know they’ll pay off. On the 5th or 6th day of my ride I expect my legs to turn into hard lumps of lead. Being seated for hours on end isn’t natural. Depending on legs to move your body weight for days isn’t normal practice either. So my packing priorities include ‘deep-heat’ & a fantastic set of compression pants. After all, looking after your legs is important – we only keep moving when our legs keep turning.

Now I’m stretching to prepare for another 100 return to Bobbin Head tomorrow.  Such a beautiful place with beautiful climbs.