One day I want to take on a big challenge, but I am a chicken and I hate making commitments. I don’t like pushing myself and prefer comfort zone. But this year, I said “NO MORE” and decided to do something crazy – I decided to commit to a a big road ride.
It is easier said than done though. 10 minutes after I filled out an application, I stopped congratulating myself for making this great commitment, looked around and said, “Now what?” And that is how this series “I want to train for Bike Ride” was born. If you even remotely considering to do something like a road ride … or if you’ve never dared to consider taking a bike on the big road, this series is for you. Our guest expert is Teresa Robbins, the Director of the Venus de Miles, has loads of information and she is ready to share
I love seeing people on bicycles in perfect physical shape. I look nothing like them. Do I have to be super fit to do a ride like yours?
If you have never ridden a ride, start small and look for a campaigns like Venus de Miles. Venus if for riders of all skill-levels and abilities – our riders range in age from 8 to 78 years young, and part of what makes the event so unique is the fact that it’s a ride not a race. If you want a trophy at the finish line, you’ll need to bring your own. Celebrate the goddess within you! We have rides coming up in Illinois and Colorado.
If I had to come up with a training schedule to get myself in somewhat decent shape in a month, what would you recommend?
Preparation is key, and we support our riders every step of the way. Vision Quest Coaching, with its facility-based training centers and world-class coaches, is providing complimentary opt-in training plans to all participants. We’re also partnering with Team LUNA Chix, who will be providing weekly rides and clinics in both Illinois and Wisconsin. In addition to preparing physically, our website offers nutrition and goal-setting advice. Here’s the thing – the training plans start May 1st for the long course and June 1st for the short course. With two kids under the age of five, I know how challenging it can be to fit workouts in and prepare for a major event. If you haven’t been riding, take it slow – don’t dive in too deeply and set a realistic weekly goal for yourself that you can be accountable to. Trust the folks at Vision Quest to cultivate a training program that speaks to your everyday demands and can make sure you arrive at the start line ready to roll.
My bike is ok for training (not really), but not for a long rode ride. I really don’t want to buy another one right now. Is rent an option?
If a new bike isn’t in the horizon, renting one is certainly an option, although I would suggest it only if you can train on it also. There are several shops that rent bikes in the North Shore including George Garner Cyclery, who rent Trek road bikes that are women-specific. Make sure that your existing bike fits you – investing in a proper bike fit is priceless and can save you a lot of headache (and heartache).
What is so special about Venus De Miles? How come your ride is only for women? What do I need to do to do a road ride?
If you’ve ever participated in an all-women’s event, you know how special it is. Being surrounded within a sea of sisterhood is a powerful experience that can literally take your breath away. Not only is it important to support and encourage women in the sport, but also to provide a differentiated experience. When we initially crafted the event, we thought about what we want after a long ride – massage, mini-facials, mojitos, and gourmet food. It’s all about celebrating the accomplishment of the event and supporting a good cause. And, women are 51% more likely to give to community causes and 31% more likely to give to education than their male counterparts. (The Center on Philanthropy, 2010.)
It was during the Greenhouse Scholars Summer Symposium in 2007, after volunteering as a moderator, that Teresa knew she wanted to do something more for the students of Greenhouse Scholars. An avid cyclist, Teresa also knew she wanted to create something to encourage women to get outside on their bikes and support a meaningful cause – Venus de Miles was born. Since its inception, Colorado’s first all-women’s road ride, which is orchestrated by and benefits Greenhouse Scholars, has raised $380,981 for the organization, and expanded to Illinois in 2012. Formerly the Senior Accountant for Greenhouse Scholars’ affiliate Greenhouse Partners, Teresa recently made the switch to the Greenhouse Scholars team to become the full-time Director of Venus de Miles. And when she’s not dreaming up the next quirky idea for Venus, she’s enjoying what inspires her most, spending time with her husband, Mo, and their sons, Myles and Nico.