Thinking of taking up cycling but not confident on the road? We get that, which is why we’ve asked Sofa2Saddle challenger, Katie to share her reasons for saddling up, despite her concerns.
‘I’ve always liked the idea of cycling and owning a ‘cute’ bike but there has always been that worry of riding on the road.
As a new cyclist it can be quite nerve-wracking to ride with cars going by but when I saw the Sofa2Saddle challenge, I didn’t hesitate to sign up.
Why? Because I saw it as an opportunity to build up my confidence. The challenge itself follows an eight-week plan that helps you build speed, strength and stamina until you complete the final 50km challenge.’
I knew I could find alternative routes that didn’t involve going on the road while I followed the plan.
Finding the perfect route
‘Where I live has a lot of cycling opportunities away from the road. There are a lot of parks and countryside for me to explore, which is great. Of course, I had to do a bit of research to find these, but the Sofa2Saddle plan gave me tips on how to do this.
Asking my local bike shop, looking on my council website and joining cycling groups in my area really helped. There are loads of information at your fingertips that will give you routes you’re comfortable cycling on.
It makes sense really, because if you’re new to cycling, you’re not going to know where to go and the road just seems the obvious choice.’
I’m glad the plan gave me that prompt and the charity even have a beginner’s guide to cycling on the webpage that gives you useful tips both cycling on and off the road.
‘I do feel it will help me get the confidence to cycle on the road, but I’ll always have the option of cycling off road too.
I finally feel I can enjoy riding my bike outdoors and not having to rely on stationary bikes. When I first saddle up, I just had this pure joy and excitement running through me.’
The Sofa2Saddle challenge is available all year round, offering newbie cyclists or those who haven’t cycled in a while the opportunity to learn to love their bike.
Registration starts from £7 which includes the plan and medal, plus you have the option to purchase an exclusive cycling jersey or fundraise £50 to get it for free. Alongside this, challengers can access a closed Facebook group and meet fellow Sofa2Saddle riders.