I’m Heidi Swift, a freelance writer-photographer with a penchant for adventure. By day I manage a design team at Nike, but in my spare time I am an Editor at Large for Peloton Magazine and author of “Joy Ride”, a monthly column in the print edition of Bicycling Magazine. ThisIsSwift is the third iteration of a blog I have maintained since 2001 (formerly Grit&Glimmer and TheEverydayAthlete) In addition to providing insight into the “work behind the work”, This Is Swift is a home for content that is sometimes informational, sometimes inspirational, but always, always straight from the gut.


I was raised by wolves in Seattle, Washington before I moved to San Francisco to work with bigger, richer wolves in the advertising industry. That was fun – ad people are out of their minds. I moved to Portland, Oregon after about 7 years of that carnival.

From 2008 to 2011 I penned a bi-monthly cycling-themed column for The Oregonian newspaper. My work has also appeared in Cyclocross Magazine, Bicycling Magazine, CyclingTips, Wend Magazine, VeloNews, Travel Oregon Magazine, 1859, ROAD, Switchback Magazine and CyclingNews.com. In July of 2012, as part of a project sponsored by peloton Magazine and Cannondale Women’s Group, I rode the entire Tour de France route with a team of 5 other tenacious (and somewhat crazy) women. I survived, but just barely.

A reluctant cyclist at first,  I was lured into the painful sport by the siren song of cyclocross. I am known for my inability to descend at speed, triathlete-grade bike handling skills, and willingness to suffer. Ten years ago I never thought for a second that I would ever ride a century (100 miles on a bike? What a stupid idea!) let alone the entire 2012 Tour de France course. This just proves that I am not getting any smarter as I age.

I have a boyfriend of 15 years whom I sometimes call “my partner”. His name is Sal. In May of 2012 I Facebook married him one day while we were gardening together, which definitely caught him off-guard. It involved pushing a button on my phone, but apparently people take that stuff really seriously because our friends kind of freaked out.

In addition to bicycles, I like old film cameras, hoppy beer, good design, sad music, well-made cocktails, and rain. But not necessarily in that order.


Storm clouds and cherry red fingernails. Nevermind the mud. Photo by Victor Duong

Taking questions from the audience during a live interview with Tyler Farrar. 2011.

Sometimes I ride fat tire bikes.