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Mel D.

Since 2012

@stopitdotcom

My first Fuji was…

an all carbon, blue, black, and white Team Pro dream – it was love at first sight! I had never owned anything so nice and I rode her everywhere, I didn’t even know what I had been missing! She took me to Braves games, bars, long rides, and city cruises. I loved her in Atlanta and then she moved to New York with me. I only stopped riding her when I found a new love in a Fuji track bike. <3

What kind of impact did cycling have on your life?

I am from Atlanta but moved around a bit, I lived in Brooklyn for a few years and then found love underwater and moved to Indonesia to be a dive instructor. I spent three years there before I was ready to be back stateside in Atlanta with my family.

I couldn’t wait to get back on my bike and start riding again. A friend of mine invited me to a couple group rides in the city and I was hooked! I had traditionally been a solo rider, but I met so many new people so fast and I couldn’t get enough. The challenge and friendly competition kept me coming back. I went from casually riding to logging 75-100 miles a week and attending a mix of group rides in the city.

I was impressed and curious about the guys riding fixed gear around the city. In the summer, I decided my next wheels would be fixed! I bought a Fuji Track bike from a track coach and I wasn’t prepared for how that would change bike riding for me. I went all in and never added a brake. What it taught me about riding and road awareness was incredible. I never touched my road bike after that. I started hitting all the city rides and even the long distance ones on that bike.

Seasoned riders couldn’t believe it! I did a handful of 50 milers at 21 mph average and they all accepted me. On a whim, I entered into a 25 mile street race and won first female and 7th overall in a race with track and road bikes! I did my first century solo on my track bike and it was one of the most powerful things I’ve done. This past year, a friend challenged me to do the Rapha Festive 500 (a challenge to ride 500km over the week between Christmas and New Years Eve) fixed and I did it!

Riding bikes brought me a whole new crew in Atlanta and my trusty track bike challenged me mentally and physically. I plan to use it for its intended purpose this year and give it a spin on the track and hopefully try a crit or two.

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