Her Story. A series of blog posts telling the stories of 'women who ride' from all corners of the globe. We hope that by sharing these stories we can help encourage other women to build their confidence, learn from others and inspire others.
This month we have a story from Liz LeBlanc, a motorcycle enthusiast and YouTuber from San Francisco, USA.We hope you enjoy her story.
I'm Liz, I'm 30, and I live in SF.
Seven years ago my family and I all got our motorcycles licenses! Just cause. I’d always heard stories of my Mom riding a motorcycle before she got sick. She was a force to be reckoned with. My father rode her bike when they hung out, even though he didn’t have an M1 (licence).
Motorcycling stopped long before I was born. Riding had never crossed my mind until my brother-in-law decided we’d take a class. Since then, I've ridden fifteen different types of motorcycles, in multiple countries, on both road and dirt, solo and rarely with a friend. Riding became my thing.
I currently ride a 2006 Honda Hornet. I've dropped it a few times because its heavy AF, 184 kgs. It's better now because I shaved down the seat. It was recommended to shave down your seat instead of adjusting the suspension. So I saw a guy who sliced my seat up with a turkey cutter. I was both impressed and sort of like “ohhhh shit...wtf.” Turned out great. That’s pretty much the only “mod” I’ve done. Although, I’ve worked on it. Tires, chain and sprocket, indicators, foot pedals, clutch and brake levers have all been worked on by yours truly. Even did a “How To” video on a few of these on YouTube [they’re great] :)
>Gear has always been important to me and when I crashed it saved my face. I've had one serious accident that sent me to the hospital. I dented the tank with my BODY and confronted the ground with my face.
I blacked out and can’t recall the crash at all. I honestly think blacking out was a huge blessing because the “experience” of crashing didn’t exist for me... sooooo I wanted to get back on my bike immediately! I probably would have if my body wasn’t a little bit wrecked. This was about two years ago now.
Ultimately, I will never stop riding and one of my greatest joys is to encourage other women to ride.
My advice for women who want to ride: You know you're ready to be a motorcyclist when the thought of riding fills you with excitement and a little bit of fear. It's normal.
My advice for women who ride: Ride for yourself and no one else. Never forget why you ride and what it means to you because it is 100% a way of life. So live it like you want to.
My advice for all women: We are strong and we are here for each other. There is nothing we cannot do.
My advice for all motorcyclist: Gear is essential, NOT optional.
I started the YouTube channel Gear Up Get Out to give female motorcyclists super mega high quality user based gear reviews. Zero experience vlogging, recording, editing, audio, or sitting in front of a camera. Yeah, but that didn’t matter to me.
Curated content made by someone who cares enables, empowers, and can make a difference. I realize that now but when I started I was just hella pissed that I couldn't find info on women's gear. I realized super fast how much of a difference this content made for other riders because they told me. The comments totally filled me full of a joy I had never felt before. I had the greatest empathy for their situation and was able to give them what I didn't have. Someone once said to me "be the person you were looking for" and that is what I am striving to be.
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