Archive for Why Ride?

Back in the Saddle Again…

After riding on Christmas day with my daughter (one of her gifts was a hot pink mountain bike) we left town to visit family for nine days.  This was my first exended period of time away biking since I started this blog. I didn’t think it would make a huge difference to suspend my routine and since I couldn’t take the bike with me, I just didn’t worry about it.  I should have. Because nine days where exercise has stopped – but eating hasn’t – leaves you with tight pants and that feeling that can only be described as blech.

So today, on the coldest day of the season so far, I put on a ski cap, coat, and gloves and got back in the saddle.  And the saddle was pretty darn cold.  But that wasn’t the worst part of the ride.  Neither was the fact that I’m pretty sure that the first person I passed was laughing at me.  Or the fact that when I saw my friend checking her mail that she had to pick up her dog and put it in front of her face to hide her smile.  (I know I looked ridiculous!)  The worst part of the ride was the part where I was huffing and puffing.  Because I was huffing and puffing a lot more today than I did before I left town.

So it’s back in the saddle again tomorrow.  And the next day.  And so on. And so on…

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Long Week, Short Blog

No, I haven’t given up on my blog.  But I have to admit there have been times when I wanted to. Like this week.  It has been one of those weeks.  One of those pain-in-the-back (literally) weeks where it becomes impossible to do what you set out to do.   So I was unable to ride for reasons out of my control at the beginning of the week.  But today the decision about whether or not to ride was back in my control.  So I had a choice:  Get back on the bike and continue forward or … not.

I just got back from my coldest ride yet.  I think it doesn’t really matter what we do when we have weeks like this.  What does matter is the decisions we make when the worst is behind us and the choice is before us once again.

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Sorry? Always…and Never!

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Keeping in mind that this is a blog for the exercise-challenged, I’m going to be honest and admit that I didn’t ride yesterday.  Like most of the country,  Beaufort was blanketed with rain clouds.  It was wet wet wet.

Yet there were small lapses in the rain where I could have gone out and ridden.  But I didn’t.  At the end of the day I was sorry that I’d made this choice.

Today is also wet, but I pushed myself outside and hopped on the bike.  I passed these bright berries along the way.  Every time I ride I see or hear something amazing.  I am never sorry to have gone.

I am always sorry when I don’t ride.  I am never sorry when I do.  So why does it continue to be a challenge some days to make myself do it?

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View from Abroad Behind

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This morning I rode my bike to a yard sale.  I had to pedal home with a big and heavy glass bucket dangling from the handlebar threatening to upset my balance.  I’m sure it looked pretty funny from behind.  But I’m not sure I ever look that great from behind anyway.  Could that possibly change after this year of biking is over?

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To Read or To Ride… a hard decision for someone like me

It is raining in Beaufort today, so what I really want to do is brew a cup of tea and curl up on the sofa with a good book.  Feeling this way reminded me of something I had initially written for my first post here, which I didn’t publish then, but will now: 

This is a Blog for people who hate to sweat.  For those who, like me, would rather curl up on the sofa with a good book than do almost anything. For those who hate yard work so much that the vines have to be strangling the expensive shrubs before you’ll go outside armed with bug spray and clippers.  And that’s after three days of trying to convince yourself (from the sofa as you look up from your book) that the shrubs really look better covered with leafy vines.

 The problem is you’re smart.  After all, you read books, right?  You know that exercise is healthy and that humans were created to hunt and gather, (aka move around a lot). That doesn’t just mean hunting for the random candy bar left over from Halloween or gathering dust. 

If you are one of these people, I want you to know that I’m with you.  For years I’ve tried to get into the daily exercise habit, but failed.  Which is why I decided to publish these efforts on the World Wide Web….

It is raining in Beaufort today, but I will go out there anyway and ride.  I’ll be back to edit this post when that mission is accomplished.

Vines in my back yard.  Yes, there are shrubs under there. (We did finally cut them back.)

Vines in my back yard. Yes, there are shrubs under there. (We did finally cut them back.)

1:22 pm Mission Accomplished!  The rain lifted and off I went. 

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Top Five Reasons Biking is the Perfect Exercise for People Who Don’t Really Like Exercising and Are Therefore Always Finding Excuses Not To.

 

bike5.  It’s Cheap.

(I’ve spent a lot more money on gym memberships I didn’t use than I’ve spent on my bike.  Besides, you probably already have one gathering dust in your garage.)

 4.  It’s Convenient.

(Can’t use the “I don’t have time to go to the gym,” excuse.  Because the bike is right out in your yard/ garage/ shed.  You can get there as quickly as you can walk to the ‘fridge for that snack you shouldn’t have.)

 3.  It’s Green.

(No burning of fossil fuels required to get from your home to the place you exercise.)

 2.  It’s Interesting.

(Every piece of exercise equipment we’ve purchased has eventually been given away. We’re not alone either.  I’ve been to Goodwills where there were entire rooms of retired exercise machines.  Yeah, I know you can theoretically watch TV etc. while using said machines.  But the fact remains; you never leave the same 15 square feet of space.  Since I know this in my head, it’s hard to get my body onto the machine.  But every time I get on the bike, I know I’m going to see something interesting.)

 1.  It’s a Cool Way to Make Your Own Wind.

(I don’t like to sweat.  I’ll probably mention this a lot.  But when you’re biking there is always a breeze on your face!  And you really don’t notice the sweating until you stop pedaling – even in hot and balmy Beaufort SC. This, to me, is the best thing about biking!)

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Why I Bought a Hot Pink Bike

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I bought a hot pink bike because the only other color they had at the hardware store was royal blue.

I bought a hot pink bike because my youngest child is nine and a half.  This means that every day for nine and a half years I have awakened with the same reoccurring thought.  “Today I will start my diet.”  It’s not happening, people. 

I bought a hot pink bike because three years ago we moved from a house with two sets of stairs to a house with zero.  And I have gained fifteen pounds.  So, refusing to believe that the five pounds per year are just the age factor, I started thinking about what in my routine had changed.  I figured that all of those little trips up and down the stairs had cumulatively burned a lot of calories.  And since I don’t like to exercise, I needed to find a way to make a lot of little trips.

I bought a hot pink bike because I’d decided to set a goal of riding for at least fifteen minutes a day. Yes, I know it’s a pathetic goal.  But let’s face it, this is a blog for people with pathetic exercise habits.  It’s a blog for people who want to take small rides forward and see where they end up.  And it’s a blog for me to see if making a public commitment to easily obtainable goals can do what no diet or gym membership has accomplished for me yet.

Anyone else up for seeing if small commitments can bring worthy rewards?  Come along!  Lets see where the road takes us.

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