Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Leisurely Sunday bikeride in aid of charity

Sunday I woke up feeling fine after my hard training ride the previous day.  It was a good job, as Anny's company had organised a bike ride around the Greifensee, and I had agreed to join her.  They have a fitness initiative where for each employee that participates in such events, a certain amount of money per km is donated to charity.  I find this a great idea, as the company is not only donating money to charity, but also getting their employees in better shape at the same time.  And we all know that healthy employees tend to take less time off work for illness than unfit ones (in general).

We took the train, along with the bikes and Negrita (our dog) to Uster where the ride started.  I wasn't sure how much of the 21km route Negrita would be able to run alongside the bike, as cycling tends to be a lot faster than running.  She can run 21km (the distance around the Greifensee) just fine, but not at at a pace that would be comfortable for me to cycle at, without having to stop pedalling all the time.  So I took her dog bag along with me, the one that we use to carry her in when she flies with us.

After waiting for everyone to arrive, the group members all set off at their own pace.  To begin with Negrita was running alongside the bike just fine, and even trying to stay ahead of me.  But after 5km or so I decided she needed a rest and put her inside the dog bag which was slung over my shoulder.  It wasn't so easy to cycle one handed so that I could hold the bag with the other hand and stop it from swinging, and to brake when needed at the same time, but I managed.  Negrita seemed perfectly at ease and later a few of the group members remarked on this, saying they were surprised she doesn't get scared.

The group consisted of employees and their families so the pace was very gentle.  I was cycling with Anny and a few of her colleagues for a while, but I found the pace wasn't comfortable for me as I had to stop pedalling every few strokes in order to avoid getting too far ahead.  This is probably due to the difference in efficiency between a MTB and a road bike, as I was hardly pedalling yet still struggling to go slow enough, yet the guys on the MTBs were pedalling constantly (albeit lightly).  For this reason Anny said I should just go on ahead at a pace that was comfortable for me, and this I did.

After the ride we all had a nice picnic and then it was back to Zurich to rest a bit before the weekend was out.

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