Today I decided to ride while running errands and at the same time, look at real estate I can’t afford. At first it was fun, since living in New England does not give us too many opportunities to cycle in February. The temperature was 37 degrees, which is balmy for us. It was enjoyable to ride with a few flurries coming down – a first for me. Saw a few other brave souls on their bikes, which is always a plus.
Here’s the part that wasn’t so fun: realizing that I am in poor cycling shape. I felt like I was “starting over” as I huffed and puffed on hills that didn’t look that steep. Also, my confidence has decreased. I was braking too quickly and hesitated making a U-turn on a wide, residential street. Running through my head was “how on earth will I be able to take part in the MS 150 this year?”
The ride itself was just over a half hour. I had grand plans to do more errands and ride to other neighborhoods nearby, but gave in to my lungs and my hungry stomach. While eating lunch, I kept thinking about the experience and decided I was being too hard on myself. After all:
- It’s early in the season. Last year, training did not begin until March.
- The tires weren’t totally pumped. Having tendonitis in one elbow prevented me from fully pumping them up.
- I was riding my older bike, which is heavier than the one I use for training and long rides.
- Stayed up too late with a few good friends last night, all of us consuming more pizza and wine than we needed.
- I am pushing 50.
Okay, okay … I admit that last one is not a real excuse. I am actually proud of the fact that I do more riding and working out than I did a half a lifetime ago. And in spite of today’s struggles, the experience is making me want to ride more, just to prove to myself I can get back into last year’s shape. MS 150, here I come …