Today we take a trip back to 2012. I’d been “road cycling” for a little while already on a flat-barred Hybrid, but was starting to take it a little more seriously. Moving on from my Cateye wheel-magnet based cycling computer, I’d just got my hands on a Garmin Edge 200 thanks to a competition prize.
On a slightly frosty morning in October I’d lined up for the Cycling Weekly Box Hill Sportive. Only the short route, yet still an enjoyable 50km through Surrey’s finest roads. With the shiny new Garmin attached to the bars of my Specialized Sirrius Hybrid, I was ready my first foray into the Strava and GPS ride tracking universe!
The route for this Sportive headed out of Dorking and straight up Ranmore before descending back into town and introducing me to the famous Zig Zags of Box Hill for the very first time, a climb that quickly became one of my favourites. Spinning my way up the smooth roads of the climb I was passed by many, but also passed a number of riders. Being new to all this I’d never seen so many road cyclists all on the same stretch of road at the same time! Cresting the top of the climb there was no stopping for cake at the National Trust café on this occasion as we descended into Leatherhead and south to explore some of the rolling Surrey countryside.
Getting back home after the ride I couldn’t wait to plug that little black box into my laptop and check out my ride data! A ritual that continues to this day (although uploads are now over WiFi). Moving to the Garmin GPS unit from my Cateye certainly added fuel to my cycling addiction. I’ve always been a sucker for a bit of tech. It was a revelation to be able to see where I’d ridden as well as how far and fast (or not so fast). Previously I’d been scribbling my mileage into a notebook to keep track of each ride.
Needless to say, these days I’m a total Strava addict. I’ve got over five years of ride data is safely stored on Garmin Connect as well as Strava – and I love checking over my ride stats while in recovery mode almost as much as I love the ride itself! #totalgeek