Among my most memorable outings over the years were rides that promote women’s cycling.
Up early. Coffee at the meeting spot. A day of fantastic camaraderie with female friends who share a passion for cycling. The big finish. A raised glass.
The good news is that at a time when many cycling events are cancelled, two of my favorites are still happening. Even if most of us won’t be physically on the road with big groups as in past years, we can all ride solo or in socially distanced numbers as part of the worldwide women’s cycling community and share our experiences virtually through social media. In challenging days, completing an event delivers the satisfaction of sharing in something bigger, of pushing a little harder and going the distance, however that’s defined. And, with the current cycling boom, events are a great opportunity to help grow the women’s cycling movement. So if you’re in, be sure to help spread the word!
Coming in September:
World Bicycle Relief Pedal to Empower, Sept 12
World Bicycle Relief celebrates women’s cycling and the bicycle’s power to break down barriers of gender inequality for women and girls. In a new format, cyclists of all levels around the globe create DYI adventure rides of any length and format, on road or trail or indoors on a trainer. Proceeds from this fundraising event provide life-changing, purpose-built bicycles to give girls in rural developing areas better access to education and health care. After you sign up, WBR sends access to the Pedal to Empower app, plus a virtual adventure kit with tools and props for inspiration. This event, as well as the Women’s 100, provide route planning through partnership with the Komoot app.
Rapha Women’s 100, September 6
Now in its eighth year, this event challenges women around the world to join together on a single day to ride 100 km (62.1 miles). I’ve hosted my own rides and also participated through the Rapha Clubhouse in NYC. Although the focus has been on organizing group rides, and some will go forward this year where local regulations allow, this event has always unfolded virtually across many time zones, as riders share their experiences and photos via #Womens100. To further support the virtual experience, the Women’s 100 is on Strava and a digital, commemorative finisher’s badge is offered.
Entry: Free. Information here.
“See” you on the road?