I remember exactly what he looked like, how he greeted the group and the feeling of jealousy I had deep down. I was at a London airport for my work trip to China. Whilst this was all very exciting, I knew I would be working in an office, under pressure and to the clock. He, on the other hand was being paid to guide this group on a cycling trip. I could tell because I saw them dropping their bikes off at check in and overheard their conversation – ok, I was being a little nosey.
I was already a passionate cyclist at the time and the thought of making a living whilst being outdoors on my bike got me all excited. But I was also very career focused and soon dismissed this possibility.
The seed was planted. Ever since that moment so many years ago (2007) my passion for cycling has grown and I have toyed with the idea of packing in my job and being paid to do what I love – cycle and help others to do so.
So here I am, finally, in 2016, on a train, to an airport, to take a flight, to be paid to cycle. It’s emotional.
Not only that, I am heading to the Alps during the most exciting time to go. There’s a little tour going on at the same time you see. I will ride Alp d’huez and all the other massively famous climbs which when I say them send a shiver down my back. I have ridden all over the world and have never been to the most famous mountain range there is. Now I will be paid to go there.
I will of course be working as a guide and supporting other riders. This is a new challenge for me, one that I am ready to take head on, this time wearing Lycra and from the saddle!