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I am Dorien Cramer aka @dfietst . I grew up in Arnhem but moved to Groningen to study Sport Management. At school I enjoyed hockey along with other sports.
During my time at university I tried many other sports: climbing, bouldering, underwater-hockey... you name it, I tried it! It was during this time that I discovered cycling. A friend lent me a spare racing bike and even though it didn't quite fit I fell in love with the feeling of riding a bike. It was more than. sport, I increasingly brought the bike with me on holidays. What began with a tour of the West coast of Ireland eventually brought me to the Czech republic, China and Zambia. After these adventures of a few weeks I knew that I would like to spend a bit longer in the saddle. In 2018-2019 I handed in my notice and left my apartment and flew to Singapore for an unspecified time, with my bike in the hold. 15 months and 20,000km later I arrived at my parents' house on Christmas Eve.
The joy of sport
Once back in the Netherlands I wanted to get back to work but the yearning for physical challenge remained. This eventually led me to work as a Project Leader for Sustainable Dvelopment for the Province of Groningen. I do this three days a week, leaving enough time for some sports.
Cycling remains my biggest love but I can also be found in the gym several times a week. Now and then I also pull on my running shoes. Setting records are not my aim, I find the most enjoyment in making longer trips outside, in nature. I therefore ride the 170km to my parents in Arnhem several times a year.
Be kind to your body
For 2023 I have put a new challenge in my diary: the bikepacking event Steppenwolf. 750km as quickly as possible with a gravel bike. Stopping and sleeping is not compulsory in this event. This means that alongside the distance sleep deprivation forms part of the challenge. And good food, of course. Certainly when you spend so many hours (or days) on the bike you need to eat well and look after your body. This sort of longer trip means a combination of larger meals and handy snacks. The Kalkman Bites and Shots are ideal for this. I also carry a few on my trips closer to home. They are handy and tasty.
Dorien has written a book about her bike trip from Singapore to the Netherlands, ‘Onbevangen – een vrouw alleen op de fiets van Singapore naar Nederland‘. it is available from: www.kleineuil.nl/proza/onbevangen-details