Find your bal­ance

Be­cause there’s much more to cy­cling than rac­ing and Ly­cra

The Simple Things - - FRESH -

If you con­sider your­self more of a walker than a cy­clist, try hir­ing a bike for a morn­ing or dust­ing off your wheels. You may have for­got­ten what a lib­er­at­ing and med­i­ta­tive ex­pe­ri­ence it can be. Nick Moore, keen cy­clist and author of Mind­ful Thoughts for Cy­clists (Leap­ing Hare), re­minds us all that how­ever fre­quently we may cy­cle, two wheels is al­ways a rather mag­i­cal way to travel.

l On a bike, your ap­proach is silent and you can get much closer to wildlife. Look out for birds of prey, stoats, foxes, hares and, if you’re cy­cling at dusk, the ul­ti­mate prize – the barn owl.

l Take the ups and downs. There’s plea­sure to be found in the ex­er­tion of an up­hill climb, in feel­ing your mus­cles work­ing, the air rac­ing in and out of lungs, blood surg­ing. When you reach the top, pause, re­flect and take in the view be­fore the glo­ri­ous de­scent – the clos­est feel­ing you’ll get to fly­ing.

l Fo­cus on qual­ity not quan­tity. To have noth­ing to do but ride your bike, and all day to do it, is a plea­sure to be savoured. Set your­self no tar­gets, just take in the sounds, smells and sen­sa­tions, and store them up for shorter, less re­mark­able days to come.

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