An introduction to cycling

Almost a month ago, at 11 months old (well, a day off of 11 months), Sebastian went on his first bike ride.

We bought a second-hand Croozer Kid2 as recommended by a fellow cycling parent. Sebastian sat in one seat, and “Cow Cow”, his large Jellycat Cow, sat in the other, both tucked up under a quilt.

Ollie attached the Croozer to his Giant TCR, and off we went on a short trial ride, to coincide with nap time.

Sebastian was so amazed and excited that he fought sleep for half an hour or so, but finally gave in and had a nap for the last few miles of the 10 mile ride.

10 miles, which took us an hour! It was hilly, and a lack of maintenance and cleaning had taken toll on our bikes and Ollie was subjected to a problem that I had experienced earlier in the week; he was unable to change down off of the big ring. Making what was already a challenge, towing a trailer with a small person and cow, even more difficult. He did very well, and I struggled to keep up with them!

Sadly a nasty bug kept us from repeating the experience the following weekend, and then other commitments kept us away from our bikes last weekend. But this weekend we were free and (semi) healthy, so we decided to have another trial ride, this time with me towing.

After some domestic delays (yawn!), we departed for our ride somewhat late, so I made a last minute suggestion that we ride to a local farm cafe for lunch. We stuck a packed lunch in the ‘boot’ (trunk) of the trailer for the little one and headed off on what was supposed to be a 10 mile ride.

The cafe, 5 miles in, was perfectly placed as I was desperate to use the facilities (waaay too cold for the SheWee), but closed on a Sunday. So, sure that we would find a pub if we continued, we carried on, going away from home.

We came across one pub that was closed, then went on and on, until we got to a town. We cycled right through the town, and were about to give up when we saw a tourist sign to a local pub, which we then followed. Frustrating that was the only sign and we didn’t come across a pub. We pulled in, and I had a cake to console myself, whilst hoping that I would soon find some facilities!!!

Ollie checked Google Maps, and some 8 minute ride away was a farm cafe and it was open. So, off we went for a lovely lunch, and a play on their play park. When we got there, we’d done over 13 miles!

Ollie offered to tow home, and it’s lucky he did – a strong headwind meant that it was very difficult cycling to get back and I was exhausted. At one point, going up a hill my Garmin AutoPaused because I was going so slow! If I’d had to tow, we’d either still be going now, or we wouldn’t have made it!

Two naps, two play parks and a large lunch meant that Sebastian enjoyed his second outing despite it being more than double the length it was meant to be (24 miles altogether), and a 4 hour + trip.


How to wash a bike

How to wash a winter bike when baby is waiting

Spray it with a hose and tell it how lucky it is that it got that much.

Bounce it up and down a few times.

And if you’re feeling very generous, give it a pat down with a towel.

How to wash a summer bike when baby is waiting

Don’t. It lives in the, boarded, clean, attic half the year and only goes out it lovely weather. It doesn’t need a wash.

If it’s not on Strava it didn’t happen. 

Pre-baby, Strava was a key feature in my cycling. It was a huge motivator for me and we definitely lived by the rule “if it’s not on Strava it didn’t happen”. 

In fact, on attempting Buttertubs Pass, I realised that I hadn’t restarted my Garmin and I went back to the bottom and started again. And on the return from rides uploading my ride was priority over shower, bike cleaning, eating… Even if I was half conscious on the floor, through effort, my computer was down there with me. 

And once I’d upgraded my Garmin, it was linked to my phone and rides uploaded themselves.

But, as with many aspects of life, it’s been all change. Yesterday I went for a ride (more of a commute actually) and I tried quite hard, but it’s yet to find its way on to Strava. I changed phone, and there’s not been the time to set up the connection. 

My previous ride took over a week to upload! And on occasion, I’ve been so excited to go out that I’ve either forgotten my Garmin or forgotten to press start! 

The majority of my rides now either don’t happen, or ‘didn’t happen’!! 



This week I tried to get into some pre-pregnancy jeans.

I think I might have tried them on a couple of weeks post-partum, at which point they didn’t fit and I shouldn’t have expected them to.

Now though, they fit perfectly.

“Brilliant!” you might think. “Welldone” you might say; in fact some did.

But, this is bittersweet, because while it is nice that my waist has returned to normal, my leg muscles have not. 16 months ago these jeans did not fit, because for a short time, I was quite fit and had leg muscles, which meant I grew out of my jeans!

Oh well, at least I don’t need to buy a new pair of jeans. 😁



All change.

It’s been ten months since I wrote my last post!

After Vätternrundan and my last post, I planned to take some time to decide what to write about next; but I didn’t intend to take quite this long. The weekend after Vätternrundan I thought I had found my new topic; cycling in pregnancy!


Yes, it turns out that I was cycling for two during those 200 miles.


However, cycling whilst pregnant is just too scary. There’s the ‘not getting too hot’, the ‘not raising your heart rate too high’ and then there’s the crazy drivers, the pot-holes and the cleats. All-in-all, I was too scared to ride.


We took our annual trip to France to see Le Tour, and I did some short rides and even climbed some hills but generally I left the cycling to the boys whilst I read books and chilled out.


My bike hasn’t been out since then.


I did some short turbo sessions – fairly pathetic efforts really. But time was also against us – our house renovation was taking longer than planned. So exercise time was limited.


We are now in our house (no it isn’t finished – I’m told that they never are) and we have our little boy. So, the next challenge is starting all over again and fitting it in!












Today’s the day

We’ve (Ollie has) driven 790 miles, taken two ferries, eaten three pizzas (plus chocolate, fries, crisps..a healthy car diet) and driven across the famous bridge from Denmark to Sweden (which cost us in excess of ÂŁ30). We’ve had our last nights sleep before the big event and we’re enjoying breakfast before getting going. We have another 3-4 hours of driving to get us to Motala.

The weather last night and this morning was perfect cycling weather; not too hot, not too cold, no wind and no rain. Tonight’s forecast is rain, and wind.


P.s. I mean Ollie did the driving, not that he ate three pizzas, chocolate, fries etc. He had help with that.



From the A419

We’ve left!

It’s 10 days since I last went on my bike. I did a solo century. It was grim and my neck was in agony for days after, in fact I’m still having trouble with it, but much improved.

On the plus side my new shorts were great.

It certainly wasn’t the confidence boost I’d hoped for though and I’ve not even been slightly tempted to get on my bike since!

The jury is out on whether I will ride, if I do I honestly expect to give into the broom wagon but will of course give it my best, I’m just not over-doing it.

So, we’re on our way to the ferry (our accommodation for the night), the sea sickness tablets are packed ready! Hopefully a nice smooth trip so we can get some sleep ready for a 12 hour car journey tomorrow!


The weather forecast in Sweden is wet and windy (basically the stormy weather here is moving north)


More updates when I can.


L x