📍 LAGO DI SANTA CATERINA 🤩
One of the stops on my yesterday's route around , you know I just couldn't pass on a lake with my name on it 😅
After hiking Tofana di Rozes, I thought: "I want to ride something easy on Sunday, just for the views and relaxation 😌".
You've seen me relaxing 🤣 so I ended up pedalling my way around Tre Cime di Lavaredo - 90 km with 1700 m of accent 🤣🙈
Now I feel sooo relaxed 🤪😂🥱 and full of energy to start a new week!
Have a great Monday!
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Operating as usual
📍 LAGO DI SANTA CATERINA 🤩
Hopefully, soon, I'll be able to share a new thing with you 🤩
What are your plans for a weekend?
IT'S THE ROAD THAT MATTERS
I used to think the goal at the end of the road was what mattered most, but cycling showed me how much more incredible the way to it is.
SÜDTIROL 📍 MÜHLWALDER SEE
First ride in South Tyrol 😍 the only unpleasantness was with some Italian drivers.
It's curious that in the country with one of the oldest cycling traditions, there are so many uneducated drivers who have no idea how to pass a person on a bike safely. On top of that, they get angry when the cyclist rides properly and not 10 cm from the end of the tarmac 🤦♀️
WHICH IS THE REAL ME?
6 SEEN WANDERUNG 📍 TAUPLITZ, AUSTRIA
to my holidays in Austria to one of the chilly days that came after a forced recovery break for some rainy days.
Tauplitz is a special place inside a special place, so to say 😎 And it offers a great way to spend not too exhausting but full of spectacular views day while taking the Route of the 6 lakes.
BTW it was a pretty heavy temperature drop from 30 to 14°C in a day 😱 good I had some warm clothes packed along with bikini 👙😄
HORSEY IS BACK 🐎😎
Good to be back in the saddle and training mode after such a "relaxing" holidays that I had to postpone my return to the training schedule for 2 days 🤣 to stop falling asleep where I stood.
I'll tell you a secret - in each race, short or long, when it gets hard, I turn on one "mantra" in my mind, I tell myself: "You're a horsey! You're a strong and resilient horsey! You can do it!!!". Works every single time 🤣 even if I bonked, and it's the bike who's riding me and not the other way around, HORSEY brings me to the finish line.
Do you have a secret technique for surviving hard times on a bike?
● SUPer 📍 HALLSTÄTTER SEE
Swimming was my first love! As a kid, I loved watching Jaques Cousteau series about the underwater life 😍 I wanted to see all of that beauty with my own eyes.
I loved diving, holding my breath for as long as I could. I trained and became a fast swimmer 🏊♀️ at the age of 12. I used to joke that I have the same chest circumference as Pamela Anderson, but without any b***s 😅 I even got my PADI in 2008 but never used it.
SUP 🏄♀️ was on my list for a while, and now that I've tried it and enjoyed it very much, I plan to get one for summer active relaxation 😌 I really loved the experience!
If you haven't tried it, I highly recommend 👌
It's the last day of my holidays and I decided to pop into for a few rides.
Damn, I'm tired 🤣 I'm happy that tomorrow I'm getting back to my work and will be able to finally relax 😅😎
How did you spend your summer holidays?
📍 GROßER DÖNNERKOGEL 2054 m a.s.l
Intersport Klettersteig was the original inspiration for this trip. I saw the "Stairs to Heaven" photos before but this time I just said: "That's where I'm going!".
2054 m doesn't seem impressive after summiting Toubkal at twice the height, but making it with via ferrata makes the whole difference!
One of the most exciting experiences in my life so far!
SUP 📍 GOSAUSEE
Vacations for me are about trying new sports! SUP was on that list for a while, and now I did it, and I loved it! 😍
Really great active recovery sport, plus a nice way to build up your upper body strength along with checking your stabilisers ;)
Funny fact: guys in rental centres don't even offer me life jackets 🤣 I'm not sure what to think of it 🤔 are they afraid looking at my tan lines and scars or do they think: "There's no chance THAT will go down." 🤣
Anyways, now SUP board is officially on my must-have-this-equipment list!
STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN • 📍 DÖNNERKOGEL KLETTERSTEIG
One of the most tempting via ferratas in Salzkammergut, Austria.
Its speciality is the 40 m ladder hanging over the abyss, which people call STAIRWAY to heaven.
I'm incredibly happy I went for it and did it all the way up to Grosser Dönnerkogel peak at 2 054 m a.s.l.
Via ferrata with stunning views on Mondsee. Description said it was B+C level, but those C felt much more like D.
It's my second time with this kind of activity, but I definitely like it and want to get stronger and faster at climbing those walls.
A couple of times, I wasn't sure I'm going to make it, especially when my hands and forearms started getting cramps 😱 But I did and it felt so fulfilling
HOLIDAYS • DAY 1
On my way to Austria I decided to make a quick discovery of the area near the border on the Czech side.
I'd say, if you wanna come to the South Morave, take a gravel bike. The whole area is full of narrow tarmac roads and some unpaved perfect for slim tyres as well. Not many people on the way, so you can fully enjoy pedalling.
📍Přírodní park Novohradské hory
DO YOU TRAIN OR RIDE?
My main focus lately been concentrated on two things: training and marketing4cycling.com
Bot about two wheels and feeling good about myself 😁
I have to admit, I pretty much like this state.
COUNTING DAYS TO MY HOLIDAYS!
Any ideas, where I might be going? 🤔
💡 I take only one bike
💡 Two years ago, approximately at the same time, I took this activity (which is my main goal during holiday) for the first time in my life in Croatia.
Odliczam dni do urlopu. Kto zgadnie, gdzie się wybieram, otrzyma kod -20% na suplementy 😉
💡 Zabieram tylko 1 rower
💡 Dwa lata temu, mniej-więcej w tym samym czasie wypróbowałam tę aktywność (która jest najważniejsza podczas mojego wyjazdu) po raz pierwszy w Chorwacji.
I finally figured out why so many cyclists in Poznan don't ride for pleasure and just train. There's nothing to see around, so you just concentrate on your training and do it not to go crazy 😜
••• IG vs REALITY •••
No one is perfect, but that's what makes us interesting (at least some of us 😅).
••• TELL ME ABOUT YOUR BIKE •••
The best bike is always your own bike ;) what do you ride?
••• 🚲 & ☕️ •••
Can you imagine cycling without a good coffee? 😋 I can't. And I adore those bike coffee carts, which you can find in so many places in Poznań! No need for a table, no worrying about your bike's safety. Just grab & go!
••• CYCLING GEAR • HYDRATION 🎒 •••
[not paid, just sharing]
My fully can only fit 1 water bottle up to 750 ml, so I kept ending up dehydrated after long (3h +) rides in the middle of nowhere.
Some months ago, I got myself - 1,5l hydration backpack with an extra detached pocket, where I store my wind jacket and some snacks.
Since then, I've ridden it in multiple technical terrains and also raced stage mtb race with it.
I'm super happy with it! Light, bearly noticeable, perfectly fitted, and kept in place (and not on my head at steep descends 🤪) by system.
What's most important - I can drink in every situation and stay hydrated. If you're looking to buy something alike, this peace of gear is 💯 % worth the money!
••• SOMETIMES YOU RIDE BIKE, SOMETIMES BIKE RIDES YOU •••
Weekend started with exploring Poznanian jungles with my friend.
Some nice gravel riding done, broke some sweat 💦, burned 🔥 some calories 💪 eaten some during-the-ride-only full of sugar stuff.
Life is good 🤪 Have a great weekend!
••• I EXPECTED WORSE •••
Today I went for a personal mtb training with my coach Adam from , and he said he was surprised with my performance at the multistage race from 1,5 weeks ago.
"I expected much worse." 🤷♀️ WTF? 🤣🤣🤣
I don't know why it happens to me? People often tell me they expected worse and are surprised. Surely a lot of the times it's because I'm a woman, so of course, guys don't expect me to be smart or strong, or technically advanced... but this time probably it was because I'm not the most obedient trainee 😅
On the other hand, I don't disappoint people, so that's a good ring about it 🤣
••• TRAVELLING GIVES THE MOST PRECIOUS TREASURE •••
And travelling by bike lets you experience every place you ride in a very special and deep way.
I've visited a lot of countries and places, but so many more are on my list! I cannot imagine what can be more precious than all that experience, all the views, colours, smells and tastes on the way.
I don't need a big house, I don't need an expensive car, fancy clothes, jewellery and other meaningless stuff people buy to create a vision of happiness and wealth.
You can lose everything, but the experience and knowledge you gain on your way.
Not being able to travel would be the worst punishment of all for me.
••• CYCLING DOESN'T NEED MAKEUP •••
I was a model once. In my teens, I earned my pocket money at fashion shows and other events, where young good-looking women are used as a moving and breathing hanger or a piece of furniture.
Anyways, when I first tried wearing makeup, it felt unnatural, I saw my bright lashes in black and felt like a clown.
I got used to it and even started thinking that I don't look good without makeup on.
Since I joined the cycling industry and also changed a lot in my personal life, I almost stopped painting my face. Step by step.
I'm incredibly happy I don't need makeup to go out and feel great and confident about myself.
To be honest, I pity women who feel like they need to put a mask on their faces to go riding a bike 😅🤦♀️ dear women. You don't need that! Be real, be yourself, be free of the expectations of the basic men, who don't care about you as a person. Stop being dolls, be human!
••• MTB & DIRT GO TOGETHER LIKE MILK & COOKIES •••
Too bad I don't have my own bike cleaning person in a trunk 😅
[Good memory from Morocco]
••• ALBANIA • CASTLE OF BORSH •••
from this time last year ;)
Albania is one of the 3 Balkan countries I had a pleasure to explore so far, and I have to admit that its nature left a very warm feeling in my heart.
I have some kind of sentent to Balkans, maybe it's because the first bike trip I organised was to Montenegro... maybe it's because they remind me of my childhood peisages and smells, both from vacations in Georgia and Crimea...
Surely, those countries are not great for living cause of a high level of corruption and low level of adulation, but when it comes to mountains, rivers, and sea, it's magical!
BTW, I've been in Poznan for 6 days and I already miss hills and mountains 🤣🤣🤣 I'm not spending here whole 2 months. No f*cking way!!!
••• BIKE ADVENTURE 2023 •••
💥 4 days
💥 4 stages
💥 121 km
(no, it's not the same as on the road bike 🤣)
💥 3.800 m of ascent
💥 12 h 20 m in the saddle
Lots of rocks and routes, one fall, several bruises, incredible tiredness, but it’s all for this a bit of sick satisfaction that I get from the mtb racing.
I'm still in the mix of happiness and huge fatigue. I'm proud of myself, thankful to my stubbornness and unbreakable will (no matter how much immodest it sounds) and ability to work not only with my body but mind as well and push through the tuffest moments.
💥💥💥 SPECIAL THANKS GO TO:
💚 and my endurance and strength coach Adam Ciemniak
💚 - enduro champ and my short-term technical coach from Czechs 🇨🇿
💚 - my fuel, which keeps me rolling for over 3 years now and rescues my ass in the most physically helpless moments
💚 and Wojtek Tycner for taking great care of my bike every time she needs more than basic maintenance
💚 to my Lollipop - my beloved bike by which carries me through the toughest terrain and performs much better than its rider 🙈😜
THANK YOU ALL!
W H E R E E U R O P E M E E T S A F R I C A
That's how I see Tazekka Park. On one side I saw landscapes and colours very well known from Spain, but on the other red-ground flaming Africa was waiting for me.
If you plan to ride your bike in Morocco, this place is a great one to put on your list.
T A Z E K K A N A T I O N A L P A R K
It's not easy to create routes for Morocco, especially if you don't fancy riding main roads with lots of drivers, who don't care about your well-being. I have my tricks though 😉 but today I did something totally out of the comfort zone 😅 I went cycling without any preplanned track.
I decided to check out the road I saw in Maps.me - app that I use for many years for offline routing in all the countries I visit.
After several km, as the unpaved wide road kept going, I followed it. It led me to the very heart of Tazekka Park, which is actually as red as you can only imagine.
It was incredible to follow just the map without knowing the route's surface, elevation or even precise distance.
It's great to let go sometimes and just see what is out there 😃
Q & A : W H I C H B I K E T O T A K E T O M O R O C C O ?
I get a lot of questions from you about Morocco, so I decided to answer them and share some tips 😊
Which bike to take? I would recommend to cross the road bike off the list, that's for sure.
Gravel or hard tail mtb would be the best choice. There are paved roads, but the smaller ones are very damaged.
I'd recommend 45 mm tyres or wider, best tubeless. At times you'll have to ride through dumps with lots of glass and other sharp garbage, plus some of the local bushes have very big and strong spikes, which go through a tyre like nails (tested 😂).
Shots are taken yesterday, during my ride near Barrage Idriss 1 er 😉
In just a few days I'll be 39.
When I was a kid, I thought people who are 35 are old already 😅 This number got stuck in my head because of the job ads I saw on TV, one of the requirements was "not older than 35".
To be honest I saw lots of old-minded people, who were much younger than 35 by the birth age. I left those people behind, because I was different and always knew there's more to this life than just a standard scenario.
Most people my age worry about paying mortgage, sending children to college, etc. I'm thinking of getting myself an enduro bike and a suitable coach for the summer 😜
I've heard so many times that my choices are wrong that I just decided to shut those people up ones and for all by throwing them out of my life. And I love the result of it!
Working in the cycling industry gives an additional motivation and understanding that I'm not the only adult "playing with bikes". I'm glad I found the love of my life which connected all the dots - private and professional. I have no regrets and love every minute of my !
R A B A T - C A N D I E D P A R T O F M O R O C C O
If you visit only a central tourist part of Rabat - capital city of Morocco, you might mistake it for the European city in the highly developed country. But it's worth going just over the bridge to Salé or even dive to the side parts of Rabat to see all the usual signs of Moroccan habitants: dirt, piles of trash and buildings falling apart.
Well, unfortunately, that's how the countries, which do not invest in education, tend to put the lipstic on the pig - by showing off the specially built and cleaned areas to a short-term gided tourists to leave a pretty picture in their minds instead of he real views - endless dumpsters all over the country, covering the streets and outskirts near the inhabited areas.
But anyway, enjoy the Moroccan candy.
B E C O M E S A N T A . M E
My friend just sent me an awesome surprise - several Christmas avatars rendered based on my photos 😃 the project is brand new and came from people who love the winter holiday season!
I think it's a great idea, and if you like what you see, you can order 20 avatars for yourself 😉 and become a Santa 🎅, even if just for a bit! Simply go to
---- BecomeSanta.me ❄️🎄 ----
and upload your favourite photos of you or someone you'd like to surprise.
You can also just go to their profile .me
I have my favourite, of course, but I also want you to tell me in the comments which of the bunch you like most.
Afterwards I will revele my favourite ;)
W I N T E R I S C O M M I N G ?
Last year on the 4th of December I borded the plane to Tenerife with a one way ticket and stayed in Canary Islands till April.
This time, I borded a ferry in Algeciras and went to Morocco.
I visited this red land in May of 2008 for work, bringing a bunch of tourist agency owners with me. I was very impressed by the beauty of the local nature and delicious food, so I promised myself to return with a bike.
And here I am! With 3 bikes though 😂
Again, I was an object of curiosity at the ferry, and the guy at the customs looked extremely confused. What blond woman is doing alone coming with her car fully packed with bikes and s**t to Morocco 🇲🇦🤣
Search dog liked me right away. He or she was much more interested in "hugging" me than sniffing my car for drugs 🤣
Anyways, all the guys on the border were very polite and efficient.
I stopped for a coffee on my way (had to drive 360 km from ferry) and got served with 2 cappuccinos cause the worker assumed the men is waiting for me in the car 🤣 Well... confusing people, breaking the illogical rules and messing with assumptions is obviously my speciality!
Happy start of the winter, everybody 🤗🥳
'M E E T T H E C Y C L I N G S E C T O R E X P E R T S'
Some of you read my posts, and I appreciate it VERY MUCH 💛 and this one is also for you, readers 😉
I'd like to share very exciting news about the project that I've created and will be cohosting with Michelle Armstrong - another extremely passionate female cyclist.
Tomorrow at 10:00 CET we will start the pilot online event from the 'Meet the cycling sector experts' series.
This project is created under the patronage of Women In Cycling organisation, part of the Cycling Industry Europe, of which I'm proud to be a member.
It is made to encourage more women to join and develop in the cycling sector and also to help men understand the high value of bringing more women in.
To motivate and help women reach for the stars, we will host successful female and male leaders, representing all most important parts of the cycling community - professionals of the industry, sportspeople, government reps, etc.
If you're interested in getting more info, please click the link in my Stories. It leads to my article on LinkedIn and the event itself.
You are also welcome to join, if interested! It's NOT for women only 😉
5 B A S I C B I K E M A I N T E N E N C E S K I L L S
Both travelling with your bikes and bikepacking require at least some basic maintenance skills. It is best to have them, to simply feel more comfortable and confident, in case, if something happens and there's no bike shop around the corner.
If you ask me what's most important, I'd say:
❗️how to change a tube (even if you ride tubeless
❗️how to fix the bigger hole in your tubeless with repair kit
❗️how to adjust dérailleurs
❗️how to fix the broken chain
❗️how to push brake pistons into place, in case they start rubbing the discs
With those skills and some technical knowledge you can fix most of the common problems that happen during the ride. Even if it won't be 100% efficient, it will definitely let you ride to the nearest bike shop and get professional help 😉
O P E R A
Yep, aside from bikes and travels I love art!
For several years I had very few occasions to visit theatre, opera houses, etc. Once I went to see ballet in Poznan, but when you know the real classic school of this sufisticated art, you cannot stomach low standards 😅
No, I'm not a snob. It's just that my nature needs a certain level of art to feel contented 😉
Cannot wait to have an opportunity to visit one of the best opera houses in Europe, where the true magic happens!
R O N D A - E L B O S Q U E
69 km & 1.300 m
This route runs through the Parque Natural Sierra de Grazalema - mountains covered with mixed forest, so in autumn, you can see red and yellow deciduous trees among the evergreen pines.
The first climb was nice and easy, so I was enjoying the way to Embalse de Zahara-el Gastor (one of Andalusia's artificial lakes), but after I reached Zahara de la Sierra , where I was hoping to get lunch (again, don't count too much on the opening hours in Google 🤣), I had to silence my unhappily murmuring stomach and pedal up the much steeper 11 km long climb up to the Puerto de las Palomas at 1.357 m asl.
Well, let's say the views compensated my hunger, and the potable water point at the 3,5 km saved me from dehydration 😉 and of course, the ride down to El Bosque was the best reward of all with the meal of the bull tail in the end 😀
For the routes, please go to my account - Cycling Katya 😉🚴♀️
A L O Z A I N A - R O N D A
Day 5 of Andalusian - 45 km, 1200 m
This beautiful asfalt road runs through the Parque Nacional de la Sierra de las Nieves. Both - bikepacking travellers and road cyclists will enjoy it. It comes with 2 long (10km+) and 1 short climbs, pretty steep at times, but thanks to the great quality of asfalt, enjoyable enough 😉
This area reminded me very much of Canary Islands, especially south part of Tenerife.
My first plan for this day was more ambitious and included a nice gravel part through the park, but I took a wise decision date to my increasing fatigue (my trainer is not very happy with me pushing through 220% of the planned training load 😅).
I definitely saw some nice options for gravel rides on my way, so maybe I'll go check them ones more and share my findings with you 😉