Well, it’s been a while since I’ve been on the bike and yesterday was the first day in a while that I decided to venture back on. I find it hard to train in the cold. As each year passes it gets more and more challenging to motivate myself to brave the cold. Have I become ‘soft’ in my old age? I’ve been doing some riding the past 3 weeks inside, participating in spin classes with the hopes of becoming fit; regaining some lost power, strength and endurance on the bike. Fast forward to yesterday’s first ‘real’ outdoor ride of the season... felt like a new start, the position on my bike was different compared with that on the spin bike and it took a little while to get used to actually having my bike move underneath me instead of just existing between my legs like a dead horse.
So it came as no surprise that a bike that I was so familiar riding felt like something foreign, especially given the last time I rode and how I’ve become accustomed to the spin bike I’ve been riding. I’ve been riding quite a lot the past few weeks in spin classes and I thought for sure I’d have a jump on my spring fling with my fitness level... boy was I wrong. Not only did my bike feel unfamiliar, my heart and lungs also needed a sustained re-introduction to my body.
Rode hard and pushed every bit as much as I could but still felt like I had just learned to ride a bike for the first time. My heart rate soared, quickly and repeatedly, making those spin classes feel like a walk in the park. I felt my heart in my throat for nearly 4 hours before making it home to pass out on the couch and contemplate why I love doing this and if I’m a normal, sane human being. Seems so interesting to me how each year you feel like you’re starting over again. It gets tougher and tougher even though it’s something I’ve done since I was 12. A new start, with a familiar feeling: Pain.
Fast forward to this morning and I can assure you, my body isn’t very happy with me. I’m tired, stiff and sore and I’m about to do it all over again when I hoist my leg over the bar at noon today.