Uphill Battle: Diabolic ride

A little too much new-found confidence

Last updated 13:24 23/07/2014
Jo McKenzie-McLean

TIME OUT: Reporter Jo Mckenzie-McLean gets a massage from Jo Laughton of Harmony Skin & Beauty after competing in the Winter Quest mountainbike event at Lowburn on Saturday.

Uphill Battle column
Jo McKenzie-McLean
ALMOST THERE: Jo McKenzie-McLean approaching the finish line of the Winter Quest mountainbike event on Saturday.

Related Links

Uphill battle for 'overweight mum-of-two' Uphill battle: First running lesson Uphill battle: Running amok on the farm First foggy 5k a chilly challenge But will the deer be impressed? Uphill Battle: Making progress

Relevant offers

In the South

Big-scale construction projects drive values to 'record' levels More new builds planned to cope with school roll pressure in Queenstown Lakes District 'Not enough tea in China' to battle lagarosiphon in Otago waters Central Otago dam seen as 'only chance' for harmony over fight for water Public pressure put on Otago Regional Council to show passion and be proactive Dairy industry 'blokes and gumboots' myths dispelled Extra tourism infrastructure funding won't solve problem long-term, mayor says Wakatipu whizz-kid selected for Bulgarian research school Cultural change within Otago Regional Council 'a priority' | chief executive Seven months on sideline spurs Gary Kelliher to stand for ORC seat again

Mum and reporter JO McKENZIE-McLEAN is taking on one of the biggest challenges of her life training for the Northburn Station 50km mountain run in March next year. She reports on her progress.

I was warned . . . next time I'll listen.

It has been about two months since I first put on my running shoes and started training with Terry Davis for the Northburn Station 50km mountain run.

As the weeks progress, I am completing training sessions with a bit more ease. With this bit of new-found confidence, I took it upon myself to enter in the Winter Quest mountainbike race. After doing the 10km rustic run last month, I thought a 10km loop around a winery would be relatively easy.

When I told Terry of my plans about a week and a half out from the event, he warned me to do some mountainbike training because I might find it a bit hard. Well, time sort of got away on me, and though I had been out doing running and hill climbs with my little support crew (Debbie and Glen), mountainbike training got forgotten about.

When I turned up to Quest Farm for the event on Saturday there was a good-sized crowd, a couple of food tents, a DJ and to my delight a massage tent.

Out of a team of four, it was decided I would go first - which in hindsight was probably for the best because if I had heard how hard it was before I set off I would have probably hid in the massage tent with a warm cup of mulled wine.

The fast ones were told to get up the front, so I pushed my bike right to the back and watched on as competitors took off.

With a good frost on the ground, and plenty of ice for my wheels to skid on - I took off with gusto. Shortly into it, I started to seriously question my judgement. I don't know how to use gears properly, I'm not sure how brakes work (ie - if I should be using front or back) and it became obvious early on that I probably needed to know these things. It was slippery, it was rocky, it was steep, it was horrendous.

It felt like 100km not 10km and just when I thought I had hit a straight run home to the finish line, a marker would sent me around a corner up another hill.

While the uphills were gruelling, the downhills were absolutely terrifying. I screamed down several hills wobbling so badly it is a miracle I never came off my bike.

It took me 60 minutes to do the loop and I have never been so relieved to get off my bike. Without a moment's hesitation, I bolted to the Harmony Skin and Beauty tent for a free massage, going straight from hell to heaven.

Ad Feedback

- The Southland Times


Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content