In this activity I went cycling, early in the morning, for every weekend of my summer break and after. I chose this activity because cycling is something that is so simple yet so fun and healthy. My goal was to improve my cardiovascular fitness and increase my leg’s muscle strength and flexibility. Because of covid situation, I was spending a majority of my time at home, sitting in front of a screen. I figured that cycling would help me exercise my body and also it would be a perfect opportunity to get some fresh air and break out of my home atmosphere.
Reflection of Learning Outcomes:
Learning Outcome 3 (Demonstrate how to initiate and plan a CAS experience)
Although it may seem that this activity is as easy as taking your bicycle and starting going, a lot of planning and preparation was required beforehand so that I could smoothly perform this activity.
First and foremost was self management. Everybody knows that weekends are relaxing and rest days. I usually stay up late at night, watching series or playing video games and comfortably wake up late for brunch. I had to push myself to sleep as early as possible so that I could wake up early to the alarm the next day. I chose early morning time (6:30 – 7) because at this time the roads are empty, the weather is soothing and the entire city is peaceful.
Second part of the planning was maintenance of my cycle. I have a 3 year old Raleigh cycle. Since my cycle is old, getting my cycle in shape was important. I had to regularly go to the cycle repair shop near my house to get the brakes, the gears, the air in the tyre and also the lubrication of the chain checked.
Thirdly, there were other resources required for these cycling sessions. I had to sort out things like a towel to wipe my sweat, earphones for entertainment, a smartwatch for tracking the distance and controlling music, a water bottle for hydration apart from basic necessities like phone and wallet. I usually kept these things on my table the night before so that I could get on with cycling without wasting any time.
Finally, for evidence and other purposes, I downloaded a cycle tracking app which easily pointed out all types of things like the distance I have covered, the route I took, the amount of calories I burnt and how much time the entire session took. I figured going cycling empty mindedly will result in nothing, so I decided to make a goal for each session. I decided that I will ride my bicycle for at least 10 kilometers because I think this distance was challenging enough to push me but still doable. I tried not to limit myself by this number and tried to cycle more than 10 kilometers whenever possible.
As you can see, a lot of planning was required for this activity. In my opinion, planning the activity was a lot easier than initiating the activity. Planning required me to be aware about the resources and actions I have to take when I am cycling. But actually waking up and following the plan was a lot harder than I thought. I sometimes faced personal obstacles like lack of initiative to wake up early, commitment issues and lack of motivation. I also faced physical problems like a tyre puncture and gear problems. I have learned a lot about planning and initiating an activity as straightforward as cycling and this will definitely help me in future.
I have demonstrated the learned profile attribute ‘Balanced’ through this activity as I was balancing my daily well being by giving my body exercise and giving my mind some peaceful time. I did something productive in my otherwise chill and lazy summer break routine and this makes me feel proud of myself.
I think this activity was a success because I feel that my legs do not get cramped as easily and I feel more active. If I had to change some things about this activity, I think I would have used a lighter and newer cycle model rather than my old one. Another thing I would do differently would be explore new city areas as almost all my cycling sessions followed the same route.
This activity was truly a memorable experience for me. I have significantly improved my self management skills, organisational & planning skills and also my overall fitness. I have learned that cycling is not an activity that one does just for transportation or competition purposes, it is a very pleasurable experience for your entire body.