Adventures and Geekery - Clubber to Racer
That @mooleur is back again... Blog Post #2
Guest Blog #2 comes from Laura Morgan - How she got into racing.... @mooleur
So I've been asked by the lovely True Cycling to do a small thing on my cycling story. Where do I start?! I could talk the ears off anyone about it, but I'll start from the beginning...
I first began cycling in March 2012, at that point I was quite overweight and had spent the majority of my adult life (in fact all of it) in nightclubs, at raves, at festivals - DJing, partying and generally living a booze, smokes and hedonism filled life to the full. I can't say I didn't enjoy it, but as I drew nearer to my mid 20's it all started to dawn on me, that I couldn't possibly keep this up long-term. Sports, at this point, was firmly out of my daily vocabulary.
So how did it begin? Luckily, when I was living and working in London (I'm now based on the Isle of Man), I had colleagues who were big into their cycling and it was proposed to the staff at our office that we attempt to put forward a team to the HotChillee Alpine Challenge to raise funds for UKYouth. The usual suspects popped their names down but in a fleeting moment of complete insanity I did the same.
As you can imagine I was faced with a lot of doubt both from myself and around 99% of people that knew me. I struggled to sort out my fitness, including the smoking side (I'd smoked for almost 13 years prior..) but with doubt comes determination. It seems to fuel the fire even more.
Fast track to March 2013 and I'd completed the Alpine Challenge and had begun training to contend for the women's GC at the London-Paris in summer, I'd quit smoking, lost almost 20kg and was now entering my first season racing and timetrialling. I didn't diet, I didn't do anything special. I just rode my bike, but most importantly I didn't give up.
Fast track to now, January 2014, I'm 26, I'm about to enter my second year riding a bike and my second season racing. I've made exponential gains since last year, I'm the lightest I've ever been (my heaviest being 85kg, now I'm 60kg and 5 foot 7) and with the help of a great coach (Jamie at RPC Cyclecoach) I'm starting to face the very real prospect of becoming successful in races, not only this but I've been given the honour of being accepted to race for a women's team in the UK. These are things I could have only dreamed of a couple of years ago. I've never been happier and I've got cycling to thank for that.
Many women are faced continually with self-doubt and self consciousness, sometimes the attitudes of their peers don't help them and so they hide away from trying something new or outlandish. My advice? While you can't ignore this, you can but try, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. There's no point in being realistic, try anything that tickles your fancy, you never know what hidden talents you might have!
You can follow my adventures and geekery at http://mooleur.blogspot.com