Respect is a concept that I try to teach my Kids. It’s a hard one to explain to a strong-minded 3-year-old girl and a carefree 5-year-old boy, but I have a new found meaning of the word after reading ‘Bump, Bike and Baby’ by Moire O’Sullivan.
Respect is defined as ‘a feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievements’. I have always had respect for individuals who encompass this definition and I had a general understanding of the concept, as much as my kids did, but I will now be using Moire’s story as a true example of the word. To be honest I love my crime thriller novels and it would be hard to drag me away from a good Jo Nesbo book but as soon as Moire sent me down the preview copy I got stuck into it.
From our base in the foothills of the Mac Gillicuddy reeks in Kerry, my team and I from Elite Event Management organise the Quest Adventure Race series and this is where I first met Moire. By my own admission, I am not an elite athlete, I struggle to get out on the bike once a week or for a run up the mountains. Yet we set some of the toughest one-day adventure race challenges so elite athletes like Moire can pit their skills across the trails and mountain passes.
I have 2 kids of similar age to Morie’s and at every race Moire always asks for them and we chat about sleep deprivation and nappies.
Like everyone who takes part in our races or any challenge, they all have a reason to compete, whether for podium positions, to take part or just to finish. Through this book, Moire tells of the pressure she puts on herself to be the best adventure racer and the pressure she put’ on herself to be the best mom she can be. How she finds the balance between both is amazing.
From someone who will never be on the podium positions in a race, I found fascinating the first-hand accounts and battles she has had in the races with other top female athletes. I just get a few stories at the finish line of how tough the competition was out on the course but Moire’s in-depth account of it gave me a greater understanding of the fierce competitors that take part in the niche sport of adventure racing.
I can relate to Moire in more ways than one through the book. Working on events can be tough with time away from home and family, but we to create something that others can enjoy and that is very rewarding. It also gave me great pride that the events we create can inspire in some part, for someone as inspirational as Moire, to write such an insightful, witty and honest account of her challenges in adventure racing and motherhood.
The book is something all parents can get inspiration from. The crazy unknown world which is being a parent, to the real struggles of combining life, family and sport. By reading it has made me realise all parents go through similar emotions and Moire’s account of that struggle is heart-warming.
I talk to the top level adventure racers at our events and you can follow them on Strava to see the hours they put in to achieve the level of fitness required to compete at the top level of this sport. When I check the results to hand out the prizes and I see Moire leaving a lot of the men in her wake, it’s a testament to her commitment to her sport.
Bike Bump and Baby is not simply a book about adventure racing, but a dive into some of the real issues that parents have to deal with in adapting to the new life that is parenthood.
So when I try to teach my kids the meaning of the word respect I tell them to have both respect for individuals but also respect for individual achievements, just like Moire’s.
About the book
Bump, Bike and Baby – Mummy’s Gone Adventure Racing. Sandstone Press. Format: Paperback. ISBN: 9781912240067. Publication Date: 15/03/2018. RRP: £8.99. Available from Amazon, Foyles, Easons, and Waterstones. Paperbacks can be purchased here: https://goo.gl/8XDUZe and e-books can be purchased here: https://goo.gl/Q3p1fm
In Bump, Bike & Baby, Moire O’Sullivan charts her journey from happy, carefree mountain runner to reluctant, stay-at-home mother of two. With her sights set on winning Ireland’s National Adventure Racing Series, she manages to maintain her post-natal sanity, and slowly learns to become a loving and occasionally functioning mum.
About the author
Moire O’Sullivan is an accomplished mountain runner and adventure racer. In 2009, she became the first person to complete the Wicklow Round, a 100km circuit of Ireland’s Wicklow Mountains, run within twenty-four hours. She is married to Pete and is the proud mother of their two young sons, Aran and Cahal. While busy adapting to and learning about motherhood, Moire won Ireland’s National Adventure Race Series three times in 2014, 2016 and 2017. Bump, Bike and Baby is about this personal journey.
Moire blogs at https://moireosullivan.com/