The Girl on a Bike in the Media

U Perform Ambassador Spotlight – Vanessa aka @thegirlonabike

U Perform Ambassador Spotlight – Vanessa aka @thegirlonabike

I am super honoured to say U Peform have featured me in their Ambassador Spotlight. Here’s waht they had to say:

For our first Ambassador Spotlight, we would like introduce to you Vanessa, aka @thegirlonabike, a hard enduro rider who’s battled through from a life changing accident.

Here’s Vanessa to tell her story:

Vanessa: 6 years ago, in a single moment, life as I knew it was taken away by the momentary lapse in judgement of a red-light-jumping car while I was cycling. As an incredibly fit athlete prior to this, the world as I knew it changed.

U Perform: What you experienced was a serious incident. Recovery must have been an equally challenging experience for you? 

Vanessa: My recovery to fitness took a little over 5 years with 6 major surgeries and I’m now partly bionic with a reconstructed shoulder and hip. There is not a day that goes by where I’m not aware of the physical implications. From simple things like getting stuck in a tight jumper because my shoulder doesn’t function like it used to, to pushing on through pain picking up a 100kg motorcycle in the mud. 

In many cases, pain is the body’s way of telling you to stop and rest, however once you’ve had significant injuries it’s possible that the pain just never really goes away. If I always listened to the pain and rested, I certainly wouldn’t be where I am now.

U Perform: Can you sum up what you have you learnt from this experience? And what have you done to support your recovery and your body?

Vanessa: The body is a really darn complex thing but with the right love and attention it can do wonderful things. As part of my recovery, I decided to start taking U Perform Active Collagen. Most will think of gorgeous smooth skin and wonderful hair but that’s not why I’m on it…although I don’t complain for those benefits.

I’m on it because collagen contributes to the maintenance of ligaments and tendons, soft tissue repair, and protein synthesis, so recovery, healing and a smooth working body! My hip, something I battle with every day is ready feeling the benefits. I honestly, don’t think I will ever stop taking it and wished I had discovered it ten years ago!

U Perform: We know our products are fantastic. But what you made choose U Perform?

Vanessa: U Perform was the obvious choice for me! You get what you pay for and with U Perform Active Collagen I know I’m getting an athlete level dosage to give me the largest possible gains collagen can give.

U Perform: What are your goals for this year?

Vanessa: With my 5th hip surgery on June 6th my 2020 goals are to get back on the bike and then I’m going to be pushing by body hard to hit @redbullromaniacs and @hellasrally on my Husqvarna TE 250i motorcycle.

My body, my one home for life, is getting all the love I can give it and U Perform Active Collagen is fundamental to that journey.

To follow Vanessa on her journey and to find out more about how U Perform is supporting her, check out her social media and website.

As seen on

The Girl on a Bike in the Media

BBC Radio Pause for thought – the power of a simple hello

BBC Radio Pause for thought – the power of a simple hello

As heard on BBC Radio Oxford

My pause for thought stems from a simple hello. I remember as a child growing up, we lived on a cul de sac, we knew all the neighbours, parents chatted, kids roamed from garden to garden. All happily bonding as a community. You’d walk to the local shop and say hello to people simply because you both lived there, not necessarily because you knew them. Fast forward 25 years, yes, I’m giving my age away, but the world feels  really different. People busy going about their own business, no time to stop or even pause to smile. Head down, often with headphones or eyes glued to screens. An aerial video would probably look like the organised chaos of ants, all going about their own business, seamlessly passing and ignoring each other. But then something happened…

The power of smiles

Lock-down hit and the world was turned to four walls at home. Human contact was removed from our every day lives. Yes, video calling boomed but that animal instinct need for physical interactions was not taken away. I noticed something magical though, at least in Oxfordshire, when social distancing for walks in the park and essential trips started to pick up, interactions seemed to change. A once almost awkward hello from an over friendly stranger has now become something of the norm. I go out for a walk now and everyone seems to smile, people even use their voices and say hello. Hello to total strangers. It’s almost the total opposite, before the odd person who said hi was strange, now it’s the odd person who doesn’t say hi that comes across as strange! We’re all waving, nodding, smiling and actually acknowledging each other. It’s almost like the lack of connection has awoken a whole new appreciation for human interactions, even if it is with a stranger. It is lovely.

I like to think of it as the smile ripple. Just like a drop in the pod rippling across the surface of the water, so too can our smiles spread. My mum would tell me a smile costs nothing but can bring so much joy, so much so it can totally uplift a person’s day. And, smiling at one person, will most likely lead to them feeling a little warm glow, which leads to another smile, and another. And before you know it one smile has brightened up the lives of a whole handful of people, just from a friendly hello.

As life returns to a new form of normal, I hope this new energy for politeness and positive human interaction will continue. Let us all smile at the next person we see.

Thank you for reading my pause for thought as heard on BBC Radio Oxford

The Girl on a Bike in the Media

BBC Radio Pause for thought – do we really need so much stuff?

Pause for thought – do we really need so much stuff?

As heard on BBC Radio Oxford

My pause for thought is reflecting on all the things around me. Since life changed with the nation going into lock-down we have been living in a different world. Previously at the click of a button or quick pop to the shops we could get pretty much anything we could wish for. Whether that be toilet paper or something more exotic. However, with many business closing in quarantine, times changed. There is no longer this instant gratification and convenience to get your hands on ‘things’ and this has led me to a realisation on many occasions…a thought process where I went from ok I ‘need’ new thing, to…can I get it?, to…do I really need it, all the way to actually, I really can live without it and actually I already have that which would do just as well…or even a full realisation that I just didn’t need it. That is time not used, money not spent and energy saved just from having to really think about the need.

I’m appreciating the value in things around me to a new level. The things I already have. Last month I trimmed a small tree down in the front garden and without thinking threw it in the wheelie bin for the refuge team to take away. But then I realised. That wood, is valuable to me. If I take the time to cut it and store it, in a few weeks I’ll have wood to fuel our little chimenea in the garden. Unable to go out and buy wood we’ve since had cherished fire side evenings burning what I once saw as waste. In modern life it is sometimes too easy to just go out and buy ready to use things, disregarding the waste or whether we really need it.

Cherished fire side evenings burning what I once saw as waste
Cherished fire side evenings burning what I once saw as waste

Maybe I’ve been running life at such a pace I’ve lost my grounding, but with lock-down I’m feeling a new energy from opening my eyes to what I really need. I’ve got by with less stuff but has my quality of life been impacted? If anything, it’s rather uplifting to see I don’t need so much.

It seems this can also relate to the ‘admin’ of life. Many are returning to reduced capacity working environments where the focus is on the essentials, and what is incredible is that in many places, this is not showing huge gaping holes opening up, but instead highlighting that in countless ways the world can go round with less energy. The efficiencies of a reduced team or the forced requirement to re-think how things are done, streamline processes, are leading to less admin and more productivity. The pointless emails or amount spent traveling for a meeting that could easily be done on a video call.

There’s so much inefficiency in the world. So much stuff. So much waste. Chasing things, where actually, lock-down as proven to me that things don’t bring happiness. Experiences and time, connections and friendships, they bring happiness.

A precious commodity in manic modern life.

Experiences and time, connections and friendships, they bring happiness.
Experiences and time, connections and friendships, they bring happiness.

Thank you for reading my pause for thought as heard on BBC Radio Oxford

The Girl on a Bike in the Media

The Girl On A Bike fit for the season – Motor Rad Reporter

“While other people have been feeding a raccoon belly over the Corona period, The Girl On A Bike can proudly show off her body” Thanks so much Motorradreporter das Österreich Internet for the shout out. My body is my one and only home for life so I’m doing all I can to keep it in shape, and get prepared for my next hip surgery so I go in as strong as I can!

Shots using the PRAEP Sports ProPilot – use “VR15” for 15% off #praeperationiseverything #motofitness#fitnessmotivation#thegirlonabike

Vanessa with Praep on Motor Rad Reporter
Motor Rad Reporter

Check out my full Praep ProPilot trainer review here.


Praep ProPilot discount code 15% off

Praep ProPilot discount code 15% off

I train regularly with the ProPilot and highly rate it. For a full review please see my Praep ProPilot review here. I’m super happy to share a 15% discount with you with a Praep ProPilot discount code.

For 15% off Praep use “VR15” shop at

What is the Praep ProPilot?

In short, it’s a bike handlebar balancing device, but in reality, it is so much more. The handlebar is mounted on a central unit with three difficulty settings, each giving more or less stability and wobble. The harder the setting the tougher the workout. Designed by bikers the ProPilot is designed specifically to support off the bike, bike fitness. There is a free app to use in conjunction which provides a selection of workouts, exercises, challenges and games! Yes games. My favourite is Game of B.I.K.E.

What I think of the Praep ProPilot

The ProPilot turns monotonous workouts into fun and efficient training sessions, improving your coordination and stamina on the bike. I’m full on addicted, playing daily and seeing some serious strength gains in a short period of time.

Get one ordered and start the fun!

You can also see this Praep code over on WeThrift.

See more discount codes I have to offer

The Girl on a Bike in the Media

BBC Radio Pause for thought – do we really want life as we knew it back?

Pause for thought – do we really want life as we knew it back?

As heard on BBC Radio Oxford

If you prefer to read, here is my pause for thought:

Hi, my name is Vanessa Ruck also known as The Girl On A Bike and my pause for thought began in 2014 when I was involved in a life changing accident while cycling. Over the following 6 years I was on a mental and physical roller coaster to get my life back. A life of extreme sports, peak fitness, and most importantly pain free living. I battled through a time when I didn’t even see myself as me, this broken body unable to participate in the activities I loved was not me. Many of my friends would ask me “when is Vanessa” going to be back?

Exploring the countryside around home
Exploring the countryside around home

And then it happened. I realised, not over night, but in an awakening journey about what recovery really means.

When people say ‘recovery’, you typically think of returning to how you were before. But there is no going back. You do not merely recover, you reinvent yourself. You learn so much as you fight through, you see things in new ways and discover new truths; it’s an irreversible journey.

As I record this sat at home in lock-down I see so many similarities to the world’s battle with covid-19. None of this was planned but it is unfortunately the reality of the world we live in right now. The effects are life changing, life as we knew it torn apart, and impacts likely to last well into the future.

I hear so many talking about wanting life back, going back to how things were before. But I can’t help but wonder if that is really what we should want. Lock-down has taught me a lot about myself and somehow made me look at the world in a new way. Always busy, rushing, doing, being, fighting to cram more in, have more, do more, be more. But what does it all mean if we cannot share it with our friends and families? I wonder if I am not the only one seeing what’s more important in life than things. Time is precious.

How many of us have had more phone calls with loved ones and friends more than ever before? How about grandparents, where before it might be months between visits, and now we are embracing video calling and connecting as much as we wish. I’ve had Friday night socials, coffees in the garden sunshine. Reconnecting with people where ‘time’ seemed to have drifted us apart simply because life was ‘too’ busy. I’ve even spent time encouraging more birds into the garden and enjoying their songs. Done jobs I never had the hours in the day to do. I’ve explored the countryside around home. Places on my doorstep so beautiful yet I didn’t realise they were there, instead, jumping on planes and traveling. And most importantly. I’ve stopped to listen and be grateful for everything I do have around me right now. Yes I would love to jump on my off road motorcycle and tear off into the wilderness, but life, even in lock-down is a blessing to be alive.

I think that after lock-down I will take learnings from this time, realising that life does not have to be quite so fast paced and hectic. Keeping a little stillness and deep breaths of appreciation, keeping stronger connections with those I love. Sometimes it is the simple things in life that can bring the most joy.


U Perform discount code – active collagen 10% off

U Perform discount code – active collagen 10% off

With the long list of proven health benefits I am a daily taker of active collagen and did extensive research before going with U Perform. As a subscribed taker I am able to share a U Perform discount code for 10% with all my friends.

To use the U Perform discount code click here

Or use the U Perform discount code when you shop “UPVRUC10

I have been taking active collagen every day and in just two weeks I could feel the benefits

U Perform dicount code
U Perform discount code

More on U Perform and why you should use the U Perform discount

U Perform’s protein rich formula contains two science-led, evidence backed Bioactive Collagen Peptides®, in a convenient 30ml dose at the lowest online price.

Using our vast experience in human physiology and sports performance, we wanted to create the best collagen product available at the lowest price, ensuring that you get visible results, which meant using bovine Bioactive Collagen Peptides® in a great tasting gel for optimum absorption.

Our unique blend of two Bioactive Collagen Peptides®, vitamins and minerals, contribute to the maintenance of ligaments & tendons, soft tissue repair, and protein synthesis. Recovery after exercise is essential for muscle and tissue repair and strength building, make Active Collagen part of your daily routine.

Not only does our collagen gel have a great tasting citrus flavour, we are also currently the most competitively priced from just £1.82 per day for 8000mg of Bioactive Collagen Peptides® per sachet/day.

U Perform’s advanced Bioactive Collagen Peptides® formula also contributes to the normal function of skin, hair, nails and bones. So not only will you feel great, you’ll look great.

You can also see this U Perform code over on WeThrift.

See more discount codes I have to offer


Touch Note discount – £10 off cards with “VANETSKZ”

Touch Note discount – £10 off cards with “VANETSKZ”

With digitalisation taking over most of our communications I still love the feeling of having something in the post! I regularly write letters and cards but sometimes I want some personal photos, and with no printer at home, I use Touch Note and have a Touch Note discount for you. This is also amazing when away on a trip and wanting to send a postcard to someone.

You can easily share memories, special moments, and keep in contact with friends and family. It’s great! If you use my friend code you can get £10 off your first year with Touch Note if you use my code VANETSKZ.

You can check the Touch Note discount out here:

Touch Note discount code

About Touch Note

They are reinventing personal communication for the digital era.

Touch Note is a creative platform for personal communication. Their award-winning apps lets their members send custom-made, real cards straight from their phone, so that they can share moments with the ones they care about, anywhere in the world. Their customers have sent over 15 million TouchNote cards and they were awarded the Good Web Guide’s App of the Year 2018, Financial Times Tech 100 Europe and numerous accolades on the Apple AppStore and Google PlayStore.

We’d love it if you’d keep in touch with us, too! Send a postcard to the Touchnote team, 17 – 18 Clere Street, London, EC2A 4LJ, United Kingdom.

Design the cards of your dreams, lovingly personalised with photos and custom-features. Create custom cards easily on your phone or online & they’ll deliver them for free! Order Online or In-App. 5* Reviews. Free Delivery On Cards. Quick & Easy Ordering.

See more discount codes I have to offer


Pact Coffee discount code “VANESSA-28830A”

Pact Coffee discount code “VANESSA-28830A”

Coffee is one of lifes simple pleasures and for us having yummy fresh beans is vital to the perfect brew. If you’re after some here’s a Pact Coffee discount code. We use Pact Coffees subscription delivery service to get the best fair trade beans delivered to our door.

Enjoy £5 off your first bag [cancel at any time].

For more see and use code “VANESSA-28830A”

Pact coffee

Coffee without compromise

Founded in 2012, Pact Coffee was created to change people’s minds about coffee. They think about it like wine, not flour – it’s a cupboard staple, but one that’s infinitely better if it’s been lovingly grown and expertly processed. They want the UK to realise that. Because everyone deserves a truly quality cup of coffee.

Flexible on coffee plans.

Fixed on quality.

Pact Coffee doesn’t cut corners when it comes to coffee. They don’t buy bargain beans. They don’t sacrifice quality for the sake of profit. And they definitely don’t screw over the talented farmers they work with. Every cup you drink is 100% speciality grade, quality-checked over and over, and roasted fresh for your order. Because this coffee is worth the effort.

See more discount codes I have to offer.