16 March 2024


20 January 2020, the day I got this bike. About 8,000 miles and 12 pounds ago. Someone please come take those 12 pounds, please.

I skipped the meds last night, and for the first time in who knows when, the sleep fairy hasn't punched me in the face yet today. Am I tired? Yes. Could I fall asleep if I crawled back in bed? Also yes. But I don't feel like I will die if I don't take a nap.

Today was also not rainy (as it has been a whole lot lately) and not windy (last two days were awful) and wonderfully sunny, so after puttering around for a bit, I pulled on some bike shorts and headed out for a 100 mile ride.

I wish.

No, I intended to ride for an hour, which would have gotten me 15 miles a year ago. Today was slow, with a couple of breaks to assess how I really felt, and I ended it a little after 45 minutes and 10 miles. I know, your grandmother can ride faster than that and she dead...but I was happy enough with it.

I first stopped at the little park around the corner, somewhere around mile 5. I planned for just 2 minutes, enough to get a drink and check my HR, but then Rando Rider (who I see around all the time) pulled up and sat on the bench next to me. It's fine, it's not the first time, but he's Rando in my head because I don't know his name. His intent was to do the same thing I was, just a breather after his likely 18mph leisurely roll around town. He sat, grabbed his bottle, and then said, "Have you noticed how many people are out on bikes today? Other than me and you, they're all on those ebikes."

Now, I have several ebikes. I had no idea how he felt about them, but a lot of dedicated cyclists are still wallowing in the "that's cheating" pool.

And I had noticed. "Good for them," I said. "It's a nice day. Anything that gets them out on two wheels."

"Ayup." He slid his bottle back into the cage and got up. "I'm getting my fourteen year old one of those little folding ones. Get him pedaling before he's old enough to want a car."

And off he went. I admit, I was surprised. I expected him to grate against the ebike surge. But he took off too fast for me to tell him I have a small folding ebike in my garage I'd sell him for cheap.

Another minute, and off I went, too. I had a running commentary in my head, mostly noting all the work people had done in the yards, swapping grass for rock and plants, wondering how much that cost because damn they looked good. There's also a high chance that the commentary wasn't all him my head and I talked out loud to myself, but hey. Who cares.

Just before my final loop of the neighborhood I approached a 2 way stop sign, and coming up to it on the sidewalk was a little boy and his dad on their bikes. I could see easily that no one was coming, and normally I'd slow but not stop, but I did this time because...little kids. "See?" Dad said. "People DO stop on bikes at the sign."

Glad my gut was right and I didn't blow through it.

(No, I don't blow through stop signs. I slow, I balance, I wait. But I rarely need to put a foot down unless there's traffic.)

Next up: pulling all the bikes out of the garage to clean up, lube the chains, charge any batteries...and then put most of them up for sale. I don't need that many, I can't ride that many, and I realllllly want to make space for the One True Bike. 

Cross your fingers weaning off the meds is the answer...I have the Great Cycle Challenge in September and would really like to not cry my way through it.


messymimi said...

I'll be hoping and praying you can get off that med and on a better one if you need it. Also, that you might see the guy again and let him know your small ebike is up for sale.

Just Ducky said...

I see ebikes all the time on the trail. Yeah they are out getting fresh air, but not really exercising. Technically the trail is no motorized vehicles, but.....

By your pace I think my 7 mph on a recumbent bike is good, especially for an old lady like me!

Thumper said...

No, they are exercising...maybe not at peak, but they're exercising. I get my HR up to the 140s on an ebike. I get my HR into the high 140s on my road bike. The real benefit, though, is that people on ebikes tend to ride further and longer than non-hardcore cyclists, so they do burn as many if not more calories. 10 miles on an ebike is roughly the same as 15 on a non...presuming one doesn't use a throttle.

I slid back into cycling on a screaming bike cruiser ebike...and lost 35 pounds. Clearly it did something.