Bikes Change Lives : Candice Covello
I learned to ride a bike when I was eight. My grandparents took me to Siltanen Park in Scotts Valley and encouraged me to pedal fast!
Bikes were a constant part of my childhood after that, but they didn’t consume my time like gymnastics and dance. Maybe this is because I’ve never been great at sports with wheels. Skates, rollerblades, bikes, and skateboards were not kind to kid Candice.
I biffed A LOT.
This one time I crashed by riding my bike over a BASKETBALL.
Anyhoo… Cycling turned from a pleasure to a pain. In my later years of high school I commuted to work and school on a very large Walmart mountain bike in a long flat town with terrible air quality. All of this put a damper on my relationship with 2 wheeled transportation.
My first car was like a breath of fresh air! It brought me four wheeled freedom, confidence and an opportunity to move back home to SC where my sister and her partner in crime hired me for my creative talents as Marketing Director at their bike shop Epicenter Cycling.
At first I grumpily accompanied my sister and coworkers on road rides up Highway 1 and night rides in Wilder Ranch State Park. But I didn’t stay grumpy for long because being on a bike for fun is FUN!
I bought my first bike, a black and gold Trek FX. We took loads of trips to Swanton Berry Farm for strawberries, pie and chocolate.
What really got me into cycling was riding mountain bikes. On my first MTB ride Kazia and Shawn (owners of Epicenter Cycling) took me on a night ride up and down Emma McCrary. I thought I was going to die the entire time. Now when I ride Emma I can see how far I've grown as a cyclist! Leading the Girly Ride gives me a great opportunity to share encouraging words and tips to others riding Emma for their first time. Being out in the trees and in nature made me fall in love with mountain biking.
It really is so much fun, and I feel heathy when I ride.