Monday, May 14, 2012

Cycling: Post Honeymoon Cycling

The Honeymoon is over, the pain has begun. My hips, my side and why are my arms hurting? Yesterday, I pushed myself out of the bed early to eat something before my ride and a hour later it began to rain, and rain hard. I felt that was a legitimate excuse for not riding my bike today, after all I was sore. As the sun came out and dried away the roads and excuses, I refused to listen to the aches and pains while preparing for my morning ride.
It's funny I wanted to ride to be alone with my thoughts, yet each time I pull up into the parking lot outside of the track, my heart sinks just a little when I realize I'm the only person riding today. There are other miscellaneous riders, but we just nod in acknowledgement as we ride past each other. It's not the same as riding with David's group at night.
As, I began my morning ride, quite prepared with my music, headphones, cotton balls for nose bleeds, water bottle, and helmet. I was quite proud of myself, until I saw another cyclist in matching riding gear.
You know, the multi-colored shirt and shorts with letters and numbers all over, mental note made to make that a goal before my first competition. Content for the moment I started riding on the 5 mile track around the Pompano Airport and then the music started jumping around. Ugh, I must get that fixed how can I ride to music that's jumping around?  The wind was no less relentless this morning as it put me through the test, the more I peddled the more it blew against me. I had originally planned to ride around the park twice. However, with all the challenges that morning, by the time I had completed a full circle, I was feeling weasey, a little light headed and just not in the mood. I packed up my bike. Gave myself a pat on the back for making it through the first day of wind and pain. Reality is starting to set in, do I really want to do this? That's what my body is saying, my brain was already trying to coordinate the next days ride.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Cycling: A Companion for the Ride

Slightly, discouraged that I was placed on a 12-9 shift 3 nights in a row, I had given up the thought of riding more than once this week. My niece text me to let me know she was coming down later that day and ask if she could come stay with me for a while. I welcomed her precious presence.
Around 5 pm she texted me that she was stranded about 30 miles north of my place of employment. I took off early to go pick her up and it was a welcome sight to see her. Halfway home I realized that I was off early enough to go riding. I asked her if she would like to join me, to my delight she said yes.  We arrive in time for David and his son to prepare a Specialized bike for her to ride. Off we went around the five mile track, the breeze was just right and twenty minutes later, she was hooked. Even though her bottom and a few muscles would be sore she thank me for sharing the experience with her. “Aunt Jan you always do fun stuff!” I was thankful to have her ride with me so that we could share the joy of accomplishment together.

Cycling: Preparation of the ride

Post-Posting:5 May , 2012
Getting ready for my long awaited bike ride has become more of a chore than I could have imagined. Even though I had just purchased some gym shoes before my surgery, the swelling in my toe wouldn’t allow me to wear them.  Just having a  bike to ride hasn’t been enough. After two months of sitting ,the air had seeped out, I had to find the proper air pump to put air in the tires again. I discovered this after I place a dollars worth of  quarters into the air machine at a local gas station. Egad what is this?  I had to purchase a helmet , front and back lights, and new earphones. What happened to the ones I bought last month? Cinco de Mayo for me was riding around the 5 mile track twice in 45 minutes. It seemed easy enough until I stopped. My hamstrings were singing a new song called “oh nothing but the pain of hamstrings,” (sung to the tune of Nothing but the blood of Jesus) As, I contemplated what I had just accomplished. I looked around and there was no one to share it with, at that triumphant moment I wished that there was at least one person to share this amazing experience with.

Cycling: Back in the Saddle

Post-Postings 3 May 2012:

I’m riding my bike now. Very exhilarating, freeing. Yesterday I rode 5 miles.  With my big toe, still very sore I was very careful about putting a gym shoe on. I met with David, the captain of the AA riding team. He adjusted the handle bars, sprayed my chain will lubrication and showed me how to properly use the gears on my bike. He reminded me to breathe through my nose, which could eventually cause my  nose bleed I know. But he said it would stop after I was breathing regularly through my nose.  I met two other AA women, it was inspiring to see other AA women riding as well.  I have my helmet, lights, seat and some sports glasses now. My next goal is to purchase the black riding shorts, get a pump for my bike, tool kit, gloves and a good water bottle for my bike. I don’t know if I need a kick stand or not.

8:30am Today, I’m going riding before work. I had a bowl of oatmeal with a few sprinkles of almonds and cranberries and a bottle of water.  I will be back in an hour. Shower for work, and leave for work about 11 am. I don’t know what happened to my headphones but it seems like I need to buy another pair AGAIN. UGH!

10:24am Wow! I’m back. I rode 8 miles on my Trek this morning, had I used the Roadmaster it would have taken me an hour, today 30 minutes! And I was  riding slowly, huffing and puffing all the way!

Cycling: Heart of Cycling

Post-Posting for Feburary
John Bingham captures my heart very well in this quote from an article he wrote:
“A race doesn’t allow you to hide from the challenges of the event or from your own limitations. You can lie all you want before the race but when the gun goes off, the truth comes out an you can’t be anything other than what you are.”
For a quarter of a century, I have hidden in the shadow of another person’s goals and dreams. On my sash of pride, I have collected supporting badges from persons to agencies.  Weekly, I receive calls from people thanking me for being there for them and loyally supporting their cause.
It didn’t make a difference it was a start up church or business, I was supportive. Don’t get me wrong, it’s good to help others out. Yet, my level of help was unbalanced as a flat tire. I never valued myself enough to believe in completing my own dreams and goals. I prided myself on being the helpful servant to others, all the while denying myself of the same sense of accomplishment that others were establishing. My dreams sat on the bench of life, waiting to be called into the game. There was always a reason an excuse for why they just sat there. Oh my work hours, oh the kids are too young, oh I’m busy helping out…
Today It’s different. For once in my life I’ve thrown my dreams out in to the cold water. Sink or swim. I’ve spoke it to enough people, where I can’t back down with out shame or excuses.   My fears, doubts of my decisions to participate in a triathlon were confirmed by Ironman Chef Joe Bastianich.
“Once you get into endurance sports, especially triathlon, it becomes a lifestyle. It’s a different way of looking at work, life and relationships.  There’s perseverance, patience, focus and a goal-oriented disposition.  It plays into the same formula for success, whatever you apply it to in life.”