June 1, 2019 - by Paul Bosselaar

So next week is the “fietselfstedentocht”, roughly translated at “11 city cycling tour”. Originally a ice (speed) skating event of about 200km long. By bike this is about 235km which have to be completed in a day. For me, 235km is a thing. I hope I survive ;) The most I have done on my racingbike is 115km by myself. That took about 4.5 hours including some rest.

Why would I ride such a distance in a day you might ask? For 2 reasons actually. The first is that I was asked to join this event as parts of Simon’s peleton/platoon. A group of people trying to raise money for Support Casper. The group is named after my father who passed away about a year ago due to pancreas cancer. Casper van Eijk is doing new research because this type of cancer usually means you won’t survive. A cycling buddy of my father started this group, asked me to join, and eventually asked me to join the fietselfstedentocht.

The second reason is that I want to have some focus and to be able to clear my head. My dad died last year and just 2 months ago I lost my brother as well. I seem to be able to cope with this for now, but I do need a lot more rest and quiet at this time. Being on the bike (for hours) pushing the distance further then I went before gives me focus and a form of accomplishment. And I can achieve that while raising some money for a good cause.