A great day on the bike

If any day can epitomise my interests and motivation behind this blog, it was Friday.
After a nightmare of a week at work, I had a day of working at home instead of going in to the office. I’d barely seen the kids all week so it was a pleasure to do the school run… especially after turning it in to the school ride.
For the first time ever, I shared the simple pleasure of cycling to school with my kids. The big one on her own bike and the youngest on the back of mine. They loved it and so did I. The freedom that my daughter feels on her bike is visible and seeing such a big grin on her face going to school makes our summer of cycling all the more special (especially when a lot of her friends are still on stabilisers).

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After dropping them off and clearing a mountainous backlog of emails it was time for a lunchtime ride. Time was tight so it was a short and fast ride, scooping up two K.O.M.s on the way!
For any Strava virgins a K.O.M. (King of the Mountains) accolade is what you earn when riding one of the segments of your ride quicker than anyone in the world…ever. A brilliant way of spicing up shorter rides and adding a bit of local (and virtual) rivalry with other cyclists. Holding a K.O.M. in our village is similar, and as close as we’re going to get to, holding a rainbow or yellow jersey.
Anyway, back to my great day on the bike.  after picking up the girls from the school, we cycled back, I wrapped up work for the day and we had a cross country ride to Stanton Lakes to enjoy a pint of Peroni and a basket of scampi and chips looking out of the lakes while the sun went down. Does family cycling get any better than that?

How do you get kids balancing on balance bikes?

We’ve just come back from our amazing holiday in France.  Whilst we were there, the whole family enjoyed going for bike rides and our favourite is undoubtedly the one we did with a picnic to a grassy little spot under a tree on the side of the Loire.

At the moment, my youngest is still in the child seat shouting “faster, Daddy, faster” but my eldest is now super proficient on her 14 inch wheels.  During the holiday she has also mastered cycling out of the saddle, cycling with one hand and (crucially) she has a great sprinting face and fast elbows!  Anyone who missed Wiggos fast elbows in the Tour de Romandie last year can see the final sprint on You Tube

Anyway.  We’ve arrived back to Blighty and the little one has decided she wants to get cracking on her balance bike.   We’ve decided to opt out of stabilisers given the types of advice we’re read on places like Isla Bikes and discussion forums such as Bike Radar. But how do you get the little ones started on a balance bike?

Our first attempt has resulted in back ache for me and very little balancing for the little one!  Maybe it is just patience but if anyone reads this and has a bright idea I’d be happy to hear it!