By Khem Suthiwan
Training rides by yourself can get boring and monotonous, so I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to give the Tour de Ladies a whirl. Whether you are a seasoned cyclist, triathlete in training, or dipping your toe in as a newbie rider – you should definitely put Tour de Ladies on your calendar of events for next year and here are the top 5 reasons why…
1. All Abilities Welcome! Three different routes are available. Experienced cyclists looking to get in some miles and challenging climbs (almost 3,000 ft of elevation gain) can do just that with the metric century route. The 30-mile route is perfect for a fun training or leisure ride with your girlfriends. For badass women in training, the 13-mile course offers a great opportunity to get out of the house and enjoy the experience.
2. Fully Supported Aid Stations. Each station was fully stocked with delicious snacks to include juicy watermelon and oranges, trail mix and pretzels, ice cold water and electrolyte replacement drink, plenty of other snacks, bike mechanics, super clean porto-potties, and most importantly – amazing volunteers who cheer you on as you roll in!
3. Beer, Wine, and Food at the Finish. As if you need more motivation to finish faster. The beer and wine was flowing right next to the finish line. Lunch was also provided for all the riders with plenty of room indoors or outside to hangout and celebrate your accomplishment with your friends.
4. It’s Not Boulder. Not that we don’t love riding in Boulder, but Douglas County offers some pretty amazing scenery and varied terrain.
5. Tour de Ladies Benefits a Great Cause. Not only is the ride a celebration of sisterhood and empowering women through pedal power, proceeds benefit the Crisis Center which helps victims of domestic abuse. Right before our ride began, the event announcer said (I’m paraphrasing) that we were all riding together, empowering each other for those who cannot for themselves.
The next time you feel the dread of putting on your cycling shoes and heading out for a ride, just think about how lucky you are to be able to do something so simple…riding your bike. Enjoy and be grateful for the ability to ride where you want, when you want, and how long you want because there are many women out there that would love the opportunity to do just that. It was that very thought that got me through some of the most difficult parts of the Tour de Ladies. So worth it!