Being a long distance triathlete, one can become quite anti social - spending hours on the bike and long runs alone. I for one, rarely ride in a group in Perth for the following reasons:
1. I find it extremely difficult pulling myself out of bed before sunrise, as most group rides start 6am;
2. Most groups are too fast for my pace. I did one ride with the people from TBE Nedlands bike shop and was dropped off halfway through the ride;
3. Being a triathlete, somehow the whole idea of drafting doesn't quite sit well with me.
However, lately I have been finding it difficult to get into the training gear, so I thought that training in a group will be just the thing to get myself motivated again. And what better way to do it with Monday morning social rides with Team Break Your Limits (BYL). To be honest I was quite sceptical at first, as quite often, most social rides turn into competitive ego jostling races!
But I was assured by Bill, one of the main guys there, that wasn't the case. And they even had novices joining them. Also, my friend Shao, who swims with me, is also part of the group, so it helps having familiar people there. So on Monday morning 6am, I turned up at BYL headquarters/gym in West Perth. Bill and Shao introduced me to everyone else. I noticed that I was the only one without shaved legs and the guys had shinier legs than the girls!
We rode through Dalkeith and did a small loop around Cottesloe Beach, which was nice as I haven't rode through there before. The pace was comfortable but as I rarely ride in a group, I got a bit uncomfortable staying so close to the other cyclists. Also my bike handling skills are still pretty poor and I found myself slowing down a lot around the corners, so I stayed back just so no one would collide into me!
We stopped by Cimbalino in Dalkeith for coffee and just chatted among ourselves, where some of us parted ways and the remaining of us returned to BYL gym. We covered about 35kms and averaged just under 26kph. I actually felt pretty good from the ride and I was feeling fresh for the rest of the day. Looks like this is one ride which I would keep to my weekly routine, and hopefully I can pick up some pointers on bike handling along the way!