One of the ‘silver linings’ the last 4 months is that I’ve gotten a break from the daily obsessive-compulsive behaviors that come along with training. Always checking the weather. Keeping my bike and riding clothes in the car. Organizing my schedule to let me “get a ride in”. The constant cycle of washing bike clothes. Fixing flats, changing tires, gluing tires, and on and on.
It’s been like that for so long I’d forgotten what it was like not to be doing it every day. Like normal people. (Unfortunately I couldn’t do other normal people things for the most part).
More than once I wondered: when the time came, would I have the desire to jump back into that mentality again?
After one week I think I have my answer. Actually I had the answer earlier than that: August 6 was the first day I was able to ride a stationary bike. I then proceeded to ride 39 straight days on either the trainer or stationary bike, before going out on the road.
It’s been 9 days since I first rode outside, and I’ve been on the road 7 of those days (and 2 on the trainer). Every day I’ve looked at the weather, planned out a ride, the whole compulsive routine. And enjoyed every second of it.
I have to say, I’m more than a little surprised at the result: today I hit a milestone of 50 miles in under 3 hours. 9 days ago, before that first ride, I never would have imagined that to be possible.
You surely lose a lot, and quickly, when you don’t ride at all for 3 months. That first ride on the stationary bike lasted all of 10 minutes. But I guess 3 months off can’t completely undo twenty-some years … which is a nice discovery.
And I think I’ve discovered one of the reasons for the compulsion: after today’s ride I have that genuinely-tired feeling where I don’t want to do anything but sit with my legs up and eat. I don’t know any other way to get to that feeling.