“I am free to follow my thoughts”
OK so my idea of doing nothing, may have included facilitating a Constellation with my peer group, and a 9+ mile cycle route today. How was yours?
With the increased freedoms allowed in England to spend unlimited time exercising, and to meet one person from another household at two meters apart I have spread my wings.
Yesterday I walked up to a friend’s house with my flask and sat on one picnic blanket in their garden whilst they had their drink on a separate picnic blanket. My friend told me of a family cycle ride up to Redmires reservoir, then a 7 mile walk, climb and cycle home! It sparked an idea in me. If they can do this, with a 10 year old and a 7 year old, then I wonder if I can too?
So after the poised attempt at the Armthorpe Ascent last week, I decided to see how I got on.
I have used a bicycle as my main form of transport for many years in Manchester – commuting to a desk job at the BBC Philharmonic for 5 years, and took my son to a Steiner play group in a bike trailer for 2 years. More recently I have pootled a little to the train station and to a therapy room in Sharrow (2 miles), but since the winter I haven’t done much riding.
During lockdown, I’ve enjoyed exploring the local roads with my son, who is becoming more and more confident on his bike. For those who know the local area, we have risen up to Fulwood, Lodge More, Crosspool and many of the streets in between. I try and do the up hills first whilst our legs are fresh and swoop downhill homewards.
Today was a bit more – well a lot more – cycling than I’ve ever been used to.
It was 4.7 miles from home to the upper reservoir at Redmires! Most of it uphill.
The photo is of me when I was near the top and I stopped to take a selfie to prove what I’d done. I am so chuffed with myself. And a bit tired.
Obviously going uphill for many miles (with a few metres across and a few metres of downhill) was hard going. I can’t pretend I am not red-faced and my heart and lungs are working well.
I was thinking about How I was moving as well as enjoying the breeze, the horses and sheep I passed, as well as navigating the changing road surfaces and traffic. I was working at thinking clearly, about my pelvis resting on the saddle and my heels going down away from my head. I asked myself to release into my full spine, to unclench my hands on the handlebars and to release the back of my legs so they could unfold to their full easy length. (I repeated this to myself many times.)
Now – cycling up hill is not all about pushing with your thigh muscles. Not at all. By using my whole body together as one expansive moving process, I can release tension on the go. This way, I can conserve my energy for doing what is necessary to use my legs for locomotion.
When I parked my bike at the top of the road, I went for a walk upto the Stannage flag pole and enjoyed using my legs in a different way. I sat and enjoyed the view, watching families play and people on their mountain bikes on the path. Now there is a thing I can’t imagine doing. But I shall never say never, as I really ‘never’ thought I could have cycled all the way up to Redmires in an afternoon.
And back again!
“I am free to follow my thoughts. My thoughts lead and my body follows.”
If you would like to learn how to conserve your energy, and release tension so you can do more than you imagined – drop me an email and let’s see how I can best help you to do this for yourself. I’m still working with clients on line and serving their needs and giving great value. Don’t wait til who knows when, get going now and start to see the benefits in your life immediately and for your future.