Cycling Journey

Cycling Chronology Introduction

I quote my ‘leetle seester’ Cori, when I say I have gotten ‘fluffy’ over the past 6 months. Fluffy does not begin to describe how I actually feel I have gotten. It didn’t happen without my knowledge, I knew exactly what was happening. So I am now at the point that I only have one pair of jeans to wear, and those have been desecrated trying to fix them. In the first place, they are way too thin to be my main pair for the winter. In the second place, there had been something stuck to the leg of the jeans, so in my ‘logical’ thinking I was going to ‘melt’ it off. Using a candle lighter, I tried to melt whatever it was and then I could just scrape it off. When I smelled burning, I didn’t stop, because it wasn’t coming off. So my one pair of jeans, that are too thin for the winter, also have a small hole in the leg. My one pair of jeans can only go to the barn, home and Walmart!

I can’t seem to get eating right or exercise consistent and good. Sometimes I wonder why it takes me so long to be sick and tired of being sick and tired. Will it be when I hit that round number this time? I haven’t hit that number since being pregnant, so Lordy Lord I hope it doesn’t take that to get me out of this funk.

Send in the Bicycling magazine. I have been having thoughts of riding, since this winter is no winter at all. So I looked at the weather for the next few weeks, and of course it’s heading toward colder temperatures. But I don’t have to go to extremes to get something accomplished. I’m not going to vow to ride everyday. I’m not going to ride in snow storms, downpours of rain, or heavy wind. I’m just going to ride most days and play it by ear as far as the weather. I’m also not the type to have to wait until ‘Monday’ to start a diet or anything new, when I decide to do it, it’s right then and there.

So with erratic weather on the way, I started cycling today. My 30 something year old mountain bike has been converted into a ‘townie’, as I like to call it. It has a huge basket on the back, fenders and large smoother tires. It spends most of it’s time in the horse trailer, which resides in our driveway. I dragged it out and put air in the tires, (it only takes 40-65 lbs. of pressure).

My townie

Mountain bike turned Townie

After about 30 minutes gathering everything I would wear and starting to sweat, I was ready. Now 4 ½ miles is not exactly my idea of ‘cycling’, but I was on my ‘townie’, riding in jeans and work boots. (I wore those boots because I was going to the barn, and I wanted my feet to be warm.) But it was a start. It was about 37 degrees with a 6 mph wind. I wore my barn boots, jeans, 2 long sleeve technical wicking shirts, a vest and my cycling/running jacket. A neck warmer and actual mittens rounded out my attire. Oh, and I used those thingies that wrap around your pants so they don’t get caught in the chain.  

The ride itself was great. I didn’t need to cover my face, just my neck and ears. I must have been quite the sight, riding my 30 year old yellow townie, with a huge basket on the back, in jeans, work boots, mittens and a blue jacket. I always wear a helmet and this time I had a thin black balaclava covering my neck, over my ears and head, making my face appear as a bright oval under my helmet. My pace was very slow as I teetered back and forth trying to keep my work boots from hitting my kickstand. My first stop was the Post Office, and that required me to slowly meander up Rte. 6, something try to I avoid at all costs. But this day I ventured up that fast and precarious stretch of road, with cars whizzing by at speeds that kept the icy wind howling at me from behind. My next stop was to feed the horses and get home before dark. The road to the barn was even more dangerous to me, because it has no shoulder at all and connects Rte. 6 with the other major road in town, so it’s also very busy. Being on my townie with wider wheels allows me to go over holes and junk that I normally wouldn’t on my road bike, so I hold my ground as I slowly pedal along, all the while with a grin/grimace on my face. I grin because I’m doing what I said I would do, getting exercise, and feeling good. I grimace because I feel the need to work harder on my townie, going only 4 ½ miles total. The bike is harder and slower to move and I’m in my heavy work boots, so speed is never the goal, getting a better workout is the goal, and it hurts so good! So after feeding the horses I am able to take a longer way home and pedal into the driveway just before I would need to use lights.