Suzie was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2017, aged 25. Determined not to let her diagnosis stop her from achieving big things, she has since gone on to run the London marathon and take part in Prudential RideLondon — a leg-testing 100-mile ride through Surrey and London. She shares her experience and her advice for cyclists taking part in London to Oxford next May.
It was my mum who signed me up for Prudential RideLondon in the first place. She saw that we could do it and fundraise for Ovarian Cancer Action, which is a cause that is super important to us, so of course I said ABSOLUTELY.
I had never cycled a skinny little road bike in my life so the first few training rides were interesting, but once I got the hang of balance and decided I would NOT be using cleats, it got easier and easier from there. The weather was amazing and living in the Chilterns helped because we were able to get lots of hill training in. Me and mum both trained hard (mum harder than me!) and were pretty evenly matched in pace, which was awesome and we just chatted the whole way around. When the rain was really hard it was nice to have someone to complain to about how gross it was!
"It was so nice to ride with my mum the whole way. We were an awesome team!"Suzie
It was so nice to ride with my mum the whole way. We were an awesome team! I kept thinking, if my mum can do it at sixty years old, I sure as hell have to do it too! Completing Prudential was another big challenge under my belt and proof again to myself that can still do big things and achieve big things even though I have cancer. It made me believe anything is possible and kept me fighting. Knowing how great I would feel at the end definitely inspired me to keep pedalling when it got tough. I was taking on the challenge not only for myself but for a better, healthier future for others like me.
My advice for cyclists undertaking Ovarian Cancer Action’s London to Oxford challenge is to train hard, ride easy! It will be much more enjoyable. Make sure you train hill climbs, as it will make the flat sections much easier. Try to enjoy the wind in your face and finally DON’T run over squirrels, it is not a pleasant feeling!
Fancy taking on a cycling challenge of your own? Sign up to cycle London to Oxford and help raise money to fund the world’s first ovarian cancer screening tool.