On World Diabetes Day, Beyond Type 1 gave us a sneak peak of the Bike Beyond documentary that will hit the screens in 2018. Our friend Cassidy Robinson took part in Bike Beyond shares some insights from her adventures with us in this three part series. Check out Part 2 and Part 3.
This summer, I spent 10 weeks living on a bicycle. As a member of Team Bike Beyond, I visited 61 cities over 70 days while cycling across America with my teammates to educate and advocate on behalf of the type 1 diabetes community.
We rode over 4,000 hot and hilly miles (about 7,000 km) to prove that people with type 1 diabetes can do anything. We sat down to dinners with fellow diabetics, ate ice cream with parents of newly diagnosed children and flooded the kitchen of a community center in Utah while cleaning the dishes (okay, this was just Matt and I, but #OneTeamOneFamily).
It was an incredible summer. I made friends far and wide across America, gained 17 new family members in my teammates, and was often surprised at how many highs and lows can fit into just one day. Here’s lesson #1 from the best summer of my young life:
Anyone can cycle across America (yes, you!)
I am not a cyclist. Not ever, not even close. But I wanted to cycle across America because my dad did it when he graduated from college and I thought it would be cool to have that in common.
I quickly fell in love with cycling during my training. You could say it was love at first ride – and first fall – when I took my new Specialized Ruby to Central Park and did two laps. First time on a road bike, first time using clip-in shoes, first time using gears and my first time falling over on a New York City street. I was addicted.
I got stronger throughout the ride. That’s what happens when you ride an average of 70 miles per day for ten weeks. We vowed to train 500 miles on our bikes before leaving – I didn’t even hit 200. I got as strong as I could in the gym beforehand and used the first two weeks of the ride to figure out how to cycle.
So you have Type 1 diabetes and you’ve never ridden a bike?
You can cycle across America, trust me.