Cycling, Art and Life in the North East of England

How the love affair began…

Last year I fell in love with cycling. Not the pottering about on a bike type of stuff I did as a child, but the type where I couldn’t wait to get home from work in order to go out on my bike.  Now, I’m not going to lie to you, the first time (in way more years than I care to count) I went out on a bike it was on a little red shopper type thing passed onto me from my in-laws. The seat was wonky, the tyres underinflated, the gears occasionally worked and I managed a whole 2 miles on our first outing. I left home, made it to the top of the hill we live on, turned around and headed straight back home. Honestly, I thought I was going to have a heart attack and had to go for a lie down for 20 minutes my legs were shaking so much. I had no idea I was so unfit!

The Little Red Riding Bike stood beside the road.
The Little Red Riding Bike stood beside the road.

As I lay there with my heart pounding, and not in a good way, I wondered at the wisdom of continuing to cycle. Thing is I already knew I’d be going out again, my mind had already decided that even if my body was going to need some convincing. In part I wanted to improve my fitness, lose a bit of weight (ok a lot), but mostly as I’d huffed and puffed my way back home I’d felt a huge sense of achievement. A sense of freedom.

I continued going out on an evening after work but it soon became obvious my little red riding bike wasn’t going to cope, so I graduated onto other bikes. I really had no idea on that first evening when I stubbornly declared I was going out for a bike ride how much it was going to change my life. Newer different bikes that would steal my heart, changes to my working career and biggest of all putting the car keys away. Ultimately leading to this blog and ‘The Reality Check Project’.

If you’ve read this far than I’d like to say thank you and invite you to join me on my cycling journey. It’s not about competing in races or an epic round the world challenge, but changing my lifestyle. Centering it around active transport, cycling and walking, instead of a car. It’s been an interesting journey so far and I can’t wait to see what the future holds.



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