I’m in that really busy middle-aged stage of life right now. Career’s in full gear. Kids are young and like lots of attention (soon enough they’ll think I’m a total dork, so I try to appreciate that they like me right now). Not much time for myself. This is also the case for pretty much everyone I know.
So, mostly, I ride alone, making the commute my workout and getting in a longer ride on Saturday morning before the rest of the family gets moving. Catch as catch can.
Which makes rides like the one this morning extra fun. Nick, David, Ricardo and I did a road ride around Mercer Island. The weather wound up being beautiful, and the road around Mercer Island is always great. Rolling and very twisty, with just a few short steep pitches good for some King-of-the-Mountain points. The view — water, trees, nice houses — was great, and it was nice to just zoom along, chatting and biking at about 70% power.
Plus, it felt good to find that I could spank them on the climbs (I have no idea if they were trying to keep up whenever I jumped, but at least in my head, I’m wearing a polka-dot jersey today). My legs are coming back; I can climb again. Now I just need to get rid of my gut.
Bonus comedy: One of us — I won’t say who — had some bad luck at an uphill start from a stop sign. This nameless person got clipped in, but then wasn’t able to turn the crank over and fell over sideways — right in front of a schoolbus that was just starting to roll. The bus stopped, waited for this unfortunate cyclist to drag himself off to the side of the road, and then pulled forward, opened the bus door and gave this cyclist a stern lecture. Shame on the cyclist for having the nerve to fall over! Shame! Shame! Sheesh.
Solo on the Road vs. Solo on the Mountain
Since moving out to WA, my mountain bike has collected dust, while I ride my road bike most every day. I’m not sure why, but it’s just nowhere near as fun to ride the MTB solo. I talked with my friend Bob — who used to live in WA and is moving back here next month — and he had the same experience. Road biking alone every day = fine. Mountain biking alone every day = not so fine. Maybe that’s just because it’s too much of a reminder: Bob and I come from a group where MTB riding was very social. So MTB riding alone just underscores the fact that you’re nowhere near your core group anymore.
Or the reason may be much simpler. Ie, I don’t ride my mountain bike here because I have the absolute worst sense of direction in the world, and fear that if I go exploring trails here, I’ll get lost and never be seen again.
Today’s weight: D’oh! Getting up so early, I forgot to weigh myself, but I doubt I’m at that 177.4 I have as my goal. I guess we’ll see on Monday whether I get to keep my $50.