Bike Lessons

After having a distinctly Dante-in-Clerks day on Friday (“I’m not even supposed to BE HERE today!”), I got home, looked at the Hoarders-esque state of the house and said “Fuck it.  I gotta do something else.”  Our weather here has been unseasonably fantastic (I’ve NEVER had the house open and the AC off in August for a day, let alone a whole week), and I didn’t want to waste it cleaning house.

So, I decided to finally got for a good ride on my bike.  Since I bought it earlier this year, it’s been out only twice–once to go pick up my car from the shop (the reason I bought the bike to start), and another very quick circle around the subdivision.

This time, I left the subdivision, and decided to finally explore a local trail around the lake–one I was never quite comfy exploring alone, on foot.  The bike seemed to be a great way to explore this and get some exercise (I’ve been trying to up that with more walking after work on the treadmill to augment what I do at work walking between buildings for meetings–unfortunately, working 12+ hours a day cuts into that time significantly).

First lesson: Biking on loose gravel, headed down a steep a slope takes more care than I thought.  Thankfully, there were few people on the trail to see me nearly wipe out like a 6-year-old who just got the training wheels off.  Of course, I’m posting this admission on the web, so now anyone could know.

Second lesson: Going up long hills is way harder when you’re old and outta shape.  I know I’m out of shape (remember the 12+ hour days I mentioned?).  I know that age is creeping in at an accelerated rate.  But knowledge on a logical level and knowledge in my functional reality finally met when I had to get off my bike just before the top of a long pull and walk the rest of the way.  Seriously.  It was that, or roll backwards.

Third lesson:  My ass-padding is useless.  I have a lard-butt.  And it is useless against the bike seat.  Cushioning attached to me is no match for that tiny, hard implement of pain someone laughingly chooses to call a “seat.”

Despite the screaming of my leg muscles during this ordeal (and my lungs, and my butt), I don’t really feel the ill effects (other than the bruises on my ass where the seat was less than kind).  I don’t actually think I’m completely hopeless here, but it’s going to take a few trips before I’m back in the game.

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