Northern Star journalist and Lismore Echo columnist, Alison Paterson.
Northern Star journalist and Lismore Echo columnist, Alison Paterson. Alison Paterson

Wet but no damp spirits amongst this troupe

HANGING out with your cycling tribe always lifts your spirits.

No matter if you are a roadie in your eye-watering bright lycra lugging along the highway or covered in dust, mud and sweat as you throw yourself around the mountain bike trails, catching up with your two-wheel mates is a lark.

You get your heart rate going, breath in heaps of fresh air and have a chat and a laugh as you pedal along.

Not to mention if you get a flat or fall off, there's someone who can assist with a tyre repair or a band-aid.

What's not to love?

And of course, if it is too wet / cold / dark or there's a race to watch, then the trainer comes into its own.

Cycling is fatalistic for your mental health as well, and it's a marvellous opportunity forget any stresses, what those clowns in Canberra are doing and concentrate on being kind to yourself. Plus it's another excuse to have a post-ride coffee with your mates and unwind.

On Sunday I attended the Ballina Bicycle Club's inaugural Dash for Cash at their Knockrow circuit which starts and finishes at the Macademia Castle.

Thank heavens the coffee shop there is open.

Despite the weather which was far more reminiscent of a Scottish summer's day, a core group of cyclists and supporters turned up to cheer on the racers.

Clad in waterproof jackets, boots and clutching umbrellas against the (welcome) rain, they undertook all the necessary duties of marshalling, timing, setting up signs to alert drivers there was a cycling race on, taking entries, filling out forms, be hand with the first -aid kit, you name it.

It's the same with every other cycling club around the country, if was not for these dedicated volunteers who sort out the 101 details needed to run a race or event, chaos would reign.

There was also plenty of good humour as we huddled under cover to cheer on the brave riders who suffered rain, cold and sharp winds.

There was a feeling of camaraderie on and off the bike So maybe this is a good time to step up and volunteer to help out your local cycling club.

Just one more pair of hands can keep the load light for everyone.

Does your cycling club or group have a race, ride or event coming up?

Contact alison.paterson@ northernstar.com.au



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