Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
Howdy! My name is Sarah Swallow and I’m originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, USA. Home for me these days is my van and wherever it is parked but I do a lot of living by traveling place to place, camp spot to swim spot, along dirt roads/trails on my bicycle. I just finished up a bicycle tour in Vermont and I’m currently taking a couple days to visit with family in Brooklyn, New York. From here I’m off to Michigan, then Colorado!
My favorite activities when I’m not cycling are to swim, eat good food, listen to music, do yoga, research new places to ride and to make new routes to follow.
How and why did you get into cycling?
I have always ridden a bike as a kid and at the age of 12, I got a job a bicycle rental where I worked for 8-years. I didn’t get into riding bikes for fitness until after I graduated from high school when I was looking for a way to stay fit as an ex-field hockey player. My Mom and Dad had picked up cycling after being runners most of their lives and I started riding my Mom’s road bike with my Dad.
It took me a really long time to get interested in a big cycling adventure. I went from road cycling to trying sprint triathlons, to mountain bikes, to cyclocross, to gravel riding. Once I did a couple randonneuring rides, (where you ride hundreds of miles in as short amount of time as possible without sleep), I realized that not sleeping is not my thing. I love to sleep and I wanted to do more long-distance rides, so I could see more stuff, so naturally bicycle touring was the next step for me.
Getting physically in shape was not as big as the challenge of choosing and effectively packing the necessary gear, food, and water for a multi-day bicycle camp out. Once I had all the stuff packed on my bike, I took it for a test spin, I pitched my tent in my back yard, and tried out my cooking stuff to make sure everything worked.