The psychology behind cycology
It’s ~confession time~ I, even as I’m nearing quarter-life-crisis age, cannot ride a bike. It isn’t that I didn’t try to learn, it’s just that I have a complex history of being a regular visitor to the Emergency Department (fractured vertebrae, spinal cord issues and admittedly when I wasn’t in hospital, I was at school trying to learn how to even spell the word bi-cy-cle).
All these years later I still can’t do it, I’m still not medically-fit to, and I still need autocorrect to spell the dreaded b-word.
Something I do know a little bit about though is how important living an active lifestyle at every age and every fitness level is in maintaining happy, healthy organs and a balanced sense of wellbeing. I personally love to walk, swim, crunch my core and occasionally pay a visit to the stationary cousins of human-powered transportation which abide at the gym.
Deep down there is a part of me that wishes I could sit atop a bi-cy-cle decorated with a woven basket, dress flowing, wearing a helmet adorned with pointy black cable ties while swiftly dodging the attacks of swooping magpies. What a dream it would be to ride along some of the most exhilarating, historic, and beautiful paths throughout Victoria. As an adult with the bi-cy-cle riding skills equal to that of a rock I’d start with:
Tarwin Lower to Venus Bay Cycling Track - A 5km path suitable for beginners.
Bayside Cycling Trail - If I was craving the smell of salt and the sound of sand crunching I could choose between an 18km or a 27km journey to work off my two-seafood-sticks-and-a-potato-cake-please lunch.
San Remo to Cowes Cycling Track - The mum-in-me (and the mum you might be) would head down to this Philip Island-based trail where as a family we could ride together.
Murray to the Mountains Rail Trail (116km) – Both would definitely take me to my mid-life crisis years to complete, but their picturesque views would make it worth it, and maybe a slice of gluten-free pizza at the end.
Studley Park Loop (5km) - Apart from the jalapeños sprinkled on my pizza my second favourite form of greenery is that found within nature; such as that growing around these two trails.
Ted Wilson Trail (12km) – A bonus of this family friendly trail situated in Geelong is that the Geelong Epworth Hospital has an ED for when I inevitably crash my bi-cy-cle.
Having someone by your side can make all the difference to the experience; your friends and family can be a support system if you’re just getting the hang of riding, and can help make it more enjoyable; friendly competitions and exploring new places can help distract you if it’s the exercise aspect you dread.
Cycling to work is also a superb way to incorporate healthy habits into a daily routine, and is additionally something which can be experienced with colleagues and teammates. There’s every chance your work already has a cycling club, or perhaps there’s an opportunity to create one? Also, cycling can save you the dollars which you would otherwise spend on petrol which is better spent on tasty treats anyway; and it’s better for the environment #YaySustainability.
When feeling unwell, it can be difficult to determine the appropriate measures for your recovery. You will likely have many questions - do I need to stay home from work? Should I visit a GP? Do I need to go to the emergency department?
Recipes brought to you by the Epworth team. Seafood paella, easiest to cook on the BBQ to ensure you get that all important crust.
Margaret McKelvie started volunteering at Epworth HealthCare after the death of her husband in April last year.
For Margaret, it was an opportunity to give back to the hospital and staff that had cared for her husband until his final days.
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