Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Ride

Ughhhhhh... My first really crappy ride.

I got home from work yesterday and even though it was a Monday, I had a pretty good day at work. Becky was home when I got home, it was pretty sunny out, and I got home early, so it had the making for a nice evening. Despite the good mojo working, it didn't really turn out that great.

For some reason, I wasn't feeling the bike last night. I knew I needed to get some miles in, and I hadn't ridden the day before, so begrudgingly I went up to change and headed to the garage to take the bike out. When I opened the garage it was about 15 degrees cooler than it looked like it should be so I headed back inside and put on another layer. Back in the garage, I gave the bike the once over. It was still dirty as all get out from the soggy ride last week, but other than that, I couldn't find anything crazy wrong with it that would be a good excuse for not riding.

I rolled out of the driveway, not super happy to be out, but I couldn't really put my finger on why. It was nice out, I was feeling OK, nothing bad had yet happened, I just wasn't feeling it. Looking back it seems a little petty, and immature but I guess we all have our moments. As I tried to pull out of my neighborhood, I was held up by the UPS man, it shouldn't have gotten to me, but for some reason this seemed to irritate the heck out of me. Finally out on the road, remember that awesome ride I had a couple weeks ago when my legs seemed indestructible, ya...last night was nothing like that. Apparently, sometime between the drive home from work, and heading out for a ride, my legs were mysteriously replaced with lead weights. Even in the easiest gear, it seemed impossibly hard to turn the cranks over. What was going on?

As I set out, I planned to do my 16 mile loop plus a couple side streets to get it up to 20 miles. About 1 mile from my house, my brain and body had different ideas. I was struggling. I wasn't winded, I didn't even have the chance to get winded, it was like I couldn't even get started. Like I said...ughhhhhh, I was starting to worry that this would be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad ride.

Original plan aborted, I decided that I would just do a few laps around a five or so mile mini-loop that I've really taken a liking to. Part of this mini-loop is long and flat, and the past 5 or 6 times, that I've ridden it, I've really been able to get a good head of steam going and had a lot of fun doing it. I thought if there was anything that could break me out of this funk it would be some easy speed.

Well, I've been wrong before, and I was wrong last night. Easy speed may have cured my poor attitude towards this ride, but easy speed was not in the cards for me. The strip of road that I've fallen in love with and have routinely screamed down doing 28-30 mph easy, now was like tar paper, barely letting me squeak over 20 mph. Instead of helping this was now adding fuel to the pity party fire. Why couldn't I get up to speed? It was turning out to be a terrible, horrible no good, very bad ride.

Back up plan aborted. I just didn't have it in me to do more laps at this embarrassingly slow, super un-fun pace. I decided to head home. Needless to say, my tail was between my legs. Sometimes a strong mind can help lift up a beat up body, sometimes a strong body can inspire a doubtful mind, but man, when a weak mind and weak body get together, they can sure conspire against good things. This night, I was physically struggling and my mind wasn't helping out at all. To "punish" myself for my poor attitude and weak body, I made myself take a little detour, and hit Schwink's Hill before I called it quits. My hill riding capabilities are lackluster and I thought it fitting for some reason. It's called Schwink's Hill for a reason, it's only about a quarter mile long, but it is the steepest hill around. Something about hills and the whole, reaching the top thing are often fulfilling so this was my last resort.

I did hit the hill, and hit it hard. I tried to keep my speed above 12 mph and cadence over 100. My legs were spinning and burning like crazy. It wasn't pretty, but I made it to the top, satisfied enough to head home yet not triumphant in any way. It was a mediocre climax to a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad ride.

Less than half a flat mile from home, this ride was already over in my mind, and I was eager to never think about it ever again. (Except to completely rehash it for the sake of an Internet blog of course) However, this wouldn't be a truly ill fated ride if it wasn't topped with a bit of terrible, horrible, no good, very bad icing. I got it in the form of a couple of young, drive-by, d-bag punks. You guessed it. My first run in with an idiot that thinks it's hysterically funny to yell the loudest noise possible out the car window when driving by a cyclist (or in this case a noncyclist) at ludicrous speed. Yes, it scared the poop out of me. If you somehow read this young deviant and future drain on society; you win, you startled me. Good for you, mission accomplished. I can only assume that you don't yet and probably never will have the mental capacity to understand the potential negative results from such a stupid stunt. I unfortunately forgot my six shooter this particular ride, but at least had the presence of mind to communicate via sign language before they got too far down the road. @$$holes.

Worst ride yet... maybe I'll move to Australia.

1 comment:

  1. Chin up now, these rides happen. You did the best thing: you listened to your body and adjusted your ride accordingly. You spun around at probably a perfect recovery pace. You will get faster and these days will show up less frequently.


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