Annelies might be a “rookie” in cycling, but one with an enormous passion for her sport. “Cycling is incredibly relaxing. When I'm on my bike, I forget all my stress and worries for a moment. I relax and get new energy. I enjoy every ride and the women with whom I cycle have become good friends!"
Ideal Sunday morning activity
“I started cycling just over a year ago. My boyfriend had been cycling for a long time, on Sunday morning. Often, the men stuck around after the ride for a drink, and I regularly joined them. Together with a few other women, we came up with the idea to start cycling ourselves. It was also a matter of finding something to do on a Sunday morning. (laughs) I wasn’t sure what to expect - I had never been on a racing bike - but I threw myself into this new adventure!”
Energy boost for the entire week
Annelies was sold on cycling after the first ride. “I immediately sensed that cycling was the ideal sport for me. On my bike, I can forget everything and enjoy nature; how wonderfully relaxing. I also often go for a walk, which, to be honest, can be physically exhausting. Cycling is only tough if things got a bit out of hand the day before. (laughs) I really enjoy my cycling on Sunday morning: working out with friends and afterwards having a nice drink. It gives me loads of energy for the new working week!”
Female cycling club
Annelies always goes cycling in a group, never alone. “With our cycling club, WTC Mwoslé from Moorslede (Belguim), we have set up a team largely for women. That’s not to say that men aren’t welcome. (laughs) I always go out cycling with this group, and only on Sunday morning. It is not feasible to go cycling during the week because it does not fit in well with my work schedule. As an independent graphic designer, I often have appointments in the evening. Sometimes I go for a walk instead, which takes less time, or a swim.” Annelies has not yet participated in tours or cycling events. “I dream of cycling Mont Ventoux someday. At the moment, this still seems far away, but I hope I will succeed one day! ”
Dreaming of a pink racing bike
Are bicycle gear and accessories important for Annelies? “Yes, they are. I’m currently riding my boyfriend's bike but I’d like to have a pink Ridley. Unfortunately, my budget does not allow it yet ... I already have a pink helmet, which makes up for it a little bit. (laughs) I like looking good on my bike so give me a nice bike outfit ... from Little Black Bike, for example! I think many bike outfits are boring, while my Little Black Bike kit makes me want to jump on the bike right away! I always think: if something happens on the bike now and I have to go to the hospital, then at least I look good! (laughs)
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Running was my way to blow off steam with a preference for long distance running. I was forced to stop. The sports doctor advised me to take up cycling.
Two years ago, I was having a hard time with my knee. In an impulsive mood I bought a bike. At first, I went cycling alone but I soon decided to join a team.
I took up cycling about ten years ago. I used to ride my brother’s old racing bike and sort of grew into the sport one step at a time.