Rewind to 2013 when I first started cycling with a triathlete friend. He owned eight bikes (yes Preston that’s you) so lent me one to have a go on. I remember looking in his garage in disbelief, thinking why on earth would anyone need so many bikes? After all, you can only ride one at a time and a bike is a bike, right?
Wrong. Fast forward to 2018 and I’ve just negotiated my way around five bikes, a turbo wheel, a set of race wheels and spare training wheels to get to my office. I’m sat at my desk with oil on my hands and chipped nail varnish from cleaning the chain on my ‘winter’ bike – oh how things have changed?!
As every cyclist knows bikes are addictive and like buying a new handbag or pair of shoes (or a watch for a man) instantly make you feel like a million dollars.
I brought my first road bike off eBay for £250 and after a few months of chasing my triathlete friend Preston around Warwickshire lanes I was talked into entering a local club timetrial as a 2-up. From that moment I was hooked on trying to ride faster but my retro Fondriest eBay purchase just wasn’t helping my cause! After a few more time trials a friend offered me a ride on her rather lovely, rather expensive time trial bike (thank you Jacqui)… I think I knocked 2mins off my 10 mile time right there and then! Needless to say, it didn’t take long before l was treating myself to one for my 40th Birthday (well my mum and dad did) as I’d signed up for a Duathlon hadn’t I!?
I’m now on time trial bike number three and road bike number three. Ok I admit, it would only be number two but I managed to crash and snap the front forks on my first time trial bike and the eBay bike fell apart from over use and under maintenance.
Meet the Liv Fam …
Meet Luke: After a lot of time researching I upgraded to the Liv Avow Advanced Pro time trial bike a couple of seasons ago and only then did I fully appreciate what it felt like to ride an amazing bike. I know some of you will say yes but Debbie, it’s not the bike, it’s the legs that matter… I know they are improving so why not reward them I say?
Previously I found it hard to get the geometry right on a TT bike; apparently I have a short body and long legs, or something like that? This meant on most standard unisex bikes the top tube was too long so a female specific frame was exactly what I needed.
The biggest difference for me has been aerodynamics. Of course I’m no expert but things like the internal cabling make such a huge different and give you free speed! I’m more aero and am producing more power than ever thanks to a well-fitting bike. Hands down the best purchase I’ve ever made!
Meet Bernie: My spring, summer, autumn, winter road bike of choice, the Envie Advanced Pro. After getting Luke it was only right to upgrade the spec on my road bike and if you haven’t already tried di2, you don’t know what you’re missing! One of the best features for me though on all of the liv bikes is the saddles. I had so many problems finding a saddle until I got this bike. I’d only ever ridden 100 miles once before I took part in the Velo Birmingham 100 mile sportive and I had no discomfort whatsoever!
Meet Blue: New for 2018 is the Langma range so I opted for the Langma Advanced Pro to ride this season. Ok so this is when it got a little tough… I’d grown so attached to Bernie I felt like I was being disloyal by having another bike!? I thought I couldn’t possibly find a better bike than the Envie but after a week in Spain getting acquainted I completely fell in love with Blue.
Firstly, packing him into the box I couldn’t believe how light he was and I never really appreciated how beautiful his blue colour was until I got him out into the beautiful Spanish sun. Definitely the highlight for me was climbing. I wouldn’t class myself as a climber…. In fact truth be known ‘Debbie doesn’t do hills’ but the Langma is made for climbing. He made me feel like a million dollars. So light and responsive, I can’t wait to test him out racing and I cant imagine a better bike to explore sunny climates on.
Meet Bobby: Oops. I almost forgot to mention Bobby the Brava! New to my LIV Fam as a Christmas present, he’s probably the most fun I’ve ever had on a bike! I love the fact I can take him out for a spin anywhere, any weather with my Daughter Lillie (on her Liv Enchant of course). I have some exciting adventures and a few challenges planned with Bobby in the future so watch this space!
I hope that’s given you an insight into the bikes I love but if you have any questions please feel free to drop me message via the contact page. No matter what your goal is on a bike, Liv offer something for everyone with an extensive range of bikes and gear designed specifically for women. To check out the full range head over to Liv Cycling UK
N+1 = my kind of maths
Now try explaining the N+1 rule to your non-cyclist friends or relatives. A recent conversation with my mum went a little something like this…
Me: “I picked up my new bike from the shop today – it’s absolutely stunning!”
Mum: “But I thought you just got a new bike?”
Me: “That was a time trial bike mum, this is a road bike.”
Mum: “But what do you need another one for Debbie? A bike is a bike, isn’t it?”
So is there a rule on how many bikes you should own? Yes handbags and shoes are a (mostly) cheaper way to treat yourself but they can’t take you on new adventures or allow you to push yourself beyond what you thought were your limits can they? For this reason the answer is always N+1
You betcha I’m working hard to do these amazing bikes justice this season!