An alternative view of things from Oli, Head cyclist, roaster at James Gourmet Coffee and more…

Silhoute of Oli Pool of JGC

A positive outcome?

It’s been a strange time for the country and the world, and our way of life has changed, perhaps permanently, and in many ways for the better.

During the past few months, one of the changes I have personally made is to cycle more.

As a rower, like all team sports and clubs there has been no training or racing since the middle of march, in fact, with the major flooding through the winter I can count on two hands the number of times I have been on the river this year! And so this was a great time to find alternative ways to train, we did group circuit classes via zoom, walks, runs but most energetically I have found the time to get into cycling, along with the rest of the country it seems!

I have always enjoyed being out on my bike and over the years have supplemented my rowing training with cycling for a bit of variety. But this spring with a combination of good weather, quiet roads, and more time/fewer other commitments I have really become a regular cyclist/commuter. I live in Worcester and work in Ross-on-wye and am incredibly lucky to have the beautiful countryside on my doorstep. And so my cycling has increased from 20-30km per week to averaging 260km per week since May!

It also has positives for the environment and my wallet, and with the money I save on Diesel every week, much to my wife’s frustration, I have become addicted to online shopping of new/upgrades to my cycling clothing and bike parts. Still, it’s balanced by a reduction in spending on more coffee brewing kit I don’t need or have room for!

People are often surprised that I cycle the 30miles to work, over the Malverns, and then home again and still have the energy to do a days work but I think the fresh air and endorphins far outweigh the early starts and if it means I can eat as much bad food as I want without piling on the pounds then that’s an added bonus!

And so if you see a lycra-clad, hairy cyclist (Lycra is comfortable and practical but I draw the line at shaving my limbs, besides I suspect my Beard is far less aerodynamic but that’s not going anywhere!) struggling over the Malvern hills or plodding along the Herefordshire lanes give me a wave, I might be about to roast your coffee!

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