Today we have a story from Arkansas Heels on Wheels founder Victoria Crumpton. Victoria, Stacy, Chantal, Willa, Laura and many other great women have been championing the cause for getting more women out on two wheels in Central Arkansas. Keep up with scheduled rides, motivation and great cycling news by following them on Facebook.
Can you think of an instance where you were nervous to be in a new situation? Maybe you were starting new job, a new gym, or perhaps speaking in public? I saw that nervousness on some of the women’s faces that joined our Arkansas Heels on Wheels beginners ride on Saturday. Numerous times we have had women express the desire to ride via our facebook page but never get the nerve to come out. Believe it or not cycling can be very intimidating for beginners. I know first hand.
Heels on Wheels is a women’s riding group. You can join to learn new skills and begin to feel comfortable when you are riding a bike. We love new women joining the rides and welcome all skill levels. After many women asking for a beginners ride, the weather finally cooperated enough to let us hold one this past weekend. Willa Williams, a league cycling instructor, offered to lead this 8-10 mile bike ride. Stacy Tierney posted the ride on the Arkansas Heels on Wheels facebook page and the response I saw upon waking the next morning was beautiful! Women were inviting women, men were sharing the news with women, and women who unable to make it because of work or sickness were asking us to be sure to schedule another ride as soon as possible.
Saturday morning I was so excited to see all the new faces at the beginner ride along with the faces of friends I have met through Heels on Wheels rides over the last few months. You see it’s not just about riding a bike; it’s about meeting lifelong friends who share the same interests. It’s about riding because it is good for your health in many different ways. It’s about sharing your love of cycling with others so they can experience it. Most of all it is about creating memories with family and friends that you love.
Anna Mazur is a grad student who started riding a bike because a knee injury prevented her from running. “I feel in love with riding,” she said. She joined the Heels on Wheels beginner ride on Saturday because she was unsure how far she could go with her knee. Her favorite part about riding with AHOW was meeting new people and she hopes that soon she will be able to ride 30-40 miles.
Missy Vail is a 42 year old pharmacist who started riding to lose weight and get healthier. She wants to be healthier for her husband and children, and most importantly herself. I have had the privilege of riding with Missy on two separate occasions and I know there are many more rides to come. Missy had two very difficult pregnancies that ended up with her sons both being very sick and premature. Like a lot of women with young families, Missy was finding it hard to find time to exercise for weight loss while caring for her family. Missy started riding with her husband and has lost 100 lbs! She joined our group to ride and said things like, “I’m not a good climber you guys will drop me on the climb.” Let’s just say on the 34 mile ride we did Saturday, I saw a lot of the back of her jersey.
Life is about new experiences and our goal at Arkansas Heels on Wheels is to encourage as many women as we can to get on a bike.
“You can, you should, and if you are brave enough to start, you will.” Stephen King
Come Ride With Us,