As winter crumbles away and Spring blooms full speed ahead in front of us, it’s important to soak up the British sunshine as and when you can - god knows my pale skin needs it. Now that I’ve finished my degree and I’m free of the shackles of assignments, I’ve been able to do everything I want and more without the guilt of a word count to finish or a dissertation to hand in. Amazing!
Since the sun has been shining bright, I’ve taken the opportunity to get back into cycling. I loved it as a kid, so it made sense to start again when my boyfriend’s family suggested going along the Plym Valley trail. After a long winter filled with cosy days and nights in the comfort of my own home, I was beyond ready to explore and get my legs moving again.
We started off in Coypool, where they have a handy ‘Bike Bus’ in which to hire bikes from. Hopping on the bike and wobbling my way around the car park, it wasn’t long before balance returned and I got into the swing of things. Kind of. I revived the old saying of ‘it’s just like riding a bike!’, and I’m quite proud of it!
We took a leisurely cycle along the trail from Coypool to Clearbrook, around 9 miles. The trail is deceptively uphill for its entirety, and I really did begin to lag by the end of it.
"I can’t go any further"
"Come on Seren, you can do it!"
"I. CANNOT. DO. THIS."
"There’s a pub just around the corner!"
Pushing my thigh muscles to what felt like the very extremes, I made it to the pub. A few drinks and a hot dog later, I was ready to get back on the road. 20 minutes later, I’d practically flown down the trail.
I wasn’t deterred by this mighty feat, so two weeks later my boyfriend and I decided to cycle the easier trail from Wadebridge to Padstow, a true treat in the British sunshine. The Camel Trail is completely flat and provides genuinely beautiful scenery for those who wish to pursue it. If you’re able to travel there, I couldn’t recommend it more – there are three bike hire stores in Wadebridge ready to help you with anything you may need, plus a huge incentive at the end in the form of a pasty. I hired a bike for £12 and weaved my way to Padstow, where my boyfriend and I strolled around the shops and ate a well-deserved ice-cream. I personally love the postcards, the fudge and the illustrations the shops have to offer, so I made sure to invest in all three!
If you’re at a loose end at a weekend, I’d definitely recommend having a go at some of the cycle trails. They’re a great way to get some chore-free exercise and soak up the sun, especially if you’re in the midst of studying and are in need of a desperate break.