Motivational Monday: Nicole Whitburn
Adapting to life to as a new mum involves a lot of change, as many of our Liv Ambassadors (and many of you) have discovered over the years. For those with a passion for cycling, one of the big questions is often ‘where will cycling fit into my life now?’
We recently caught up with Nicole Whitburn to hear all about her latest and greatest achievement, and finding the simple joys in riding a bike again.
Flashback to October 2015 and I was getting ready to tackle the longest one day race in the world, the 265km Melbourne to Warrnambool. I was fit, it had been a big year of racing, and needless to say the motivation was high. This had been my biggest goal of the year, but along the way I had won numerous Victorian Road events and found myself with the series lead. Completing the Melbourne to Warrnambool would put my name in the record books as the 2nd ever female to finish the race twice. It’s a challenging race to say the least, it took me 7.5 hours that year, a big day in the saddle.
Only a short year later and I was again facing a monumental task in October; this task would not put my name in any record books, but it would be my greatest achievement ever. This time I was the heaviest I had been in my life and I was the most unfit. Yep, like a million mums before me I gave birth to my beautiful baby girl Evelyn. The most extraordinary, ordinary thing I would ever do in my life!
Becoming a Mum is an amazing experience but it is also very, very hard. The highs and the love you feel are like nothing else but the lows are so very low. The sleep deprivation is torture but the complete upheaval of your life is something else, this was the biggest shock to me. I felt as if I was struggling within myself to embrace and feel comfortable in my ‘new’ life but still trying to hold onto a small part of the ‘old’ me. Because let’s face it your whole perspective on life changes when you are responsible for this tiny precious human.
I was watching the bike racing pass me by and wondering if I would ever have the fitness to return to the glory days. Wondering if I would ever even be able to ride for more than 1 hour. But every time I got out on the bike I felt happy, I felt relaxed and I felt at home. I realised that it didn’t matter how fit I was, how far I rode or how many races I’d won. I just loved to ride my bike and for me it was the small piece of the ‘old’ me that would fit into the ‘new’ me.
This would be my motivation to keep fit amongst my busy new life. The goal was just to get out and ride my bike!
My Liv cycling crew were also fabulous. They never complained when we were riding at snail’s pace, they would patiently wait for me to get myself organised for rides around breastfeeding and nap schedules. And they were always there to encourage me when I was doubting myself.
I can’t thank Liv Australia enough for all the support over my racing years but more so over the past year. The community that Liv has built is truly amazing and having that support and encouragement to get out and do something for yourself in your life is what every new Mum needs.
If you are pregnant or a new mum and struggling to exercise go get a bike, go for a ride, breath in the fresh air and watch the world pass by. I can guarantee you will love it and it will become part of your ‘new’ life.
Sunday, 3 September 2017