A Perpetual Cycle – Columbia Metropolitan Magazine

However, passionate cycling is not just the domain of racers or men. If you want to know the best way to get downtown from Shandon or the safest two-wheeled routes for running errands, Luzviminda Gruner might be able to show you the way.

“I can haul about 60 pounds of groceries,” she says, thanks to a cargo trailer that attaches to the end of her bike. She returned to cycling in her twenties. After she started rock climbing with her boyfriend, a friend suggested she go mountain biking. “We tried it, and it terrified me, but I got used to it and now I’m a big fan of it.”

She says she finally met her husband, Derek, through mountain biking. In addition to grocery shopping, Luzviminda bikes to work at the University of South Carolina. Her 17-year-old son, Aidan, competes in the National Interscholastic Cycling Association and Columbia Composite, a local mountain bike team in grades 6-12.

“I wish more women were riding bikes and enjoying it like me,” she says. “I will always be a fan of mountain biking. My favorite word to describe mountain biking, especially mountain biking for women, is empowerment. Emotionally, it’s liberating.

Harrison Floyd also got hooked on the sport thanks to mountain biking. A Columbia-based designer and professor at the Clemson University School of Architecture, he continues to ride with the Southern Off-Road Bicycling Association when he can find the time.

“I really started when I was about 10 and went to Camp Carolina for summer camp,” Harrison says. “I signed up for a mountain bike trip. It was pretty much the greatest thing I’ve ever done in my life.

After rusting the frame of one of his favorite mountain bikes, he decided to take a bike building course. Today, he gives away or sells bicycles that he assembles from recycled parts.

“What I mostly do is take old, outdated, neglected bikes and turn them into something awesome,” Harrison says. He has several bikes in working order as well as a dozen others “in various stages of disarray”. He admits he’s not afraid to save a bike he sees in the trash. “People throw away a lot of good stuff.”

What’s it like to be a Midlands cyclist? Harrison said: “I wish it was a better place to ride, but I’m pretty happy with the setup here. »

Brian is one of many in the community to say that a lack of investment in cycling infrastructure like bike lanes and trails and a vehicle-centric society deters growth. “If there was a place to drive without getting run over by an SUV, more people would drive, but someone has to write the check.”

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