There’s a lot that could encompass. Let’s just choose one for tonight.
Last weekend, did the tour de max bike ride. Catherine was kind of upset with me doing it. I was a bit sore from a mid-week work out. I was getting 3-4 hours of sleep a night cause of the Olympics. And I hadn’t been riding my bike much the past month. It was 15 miles longer than the last time we did it. And her mother was flying into town later that day. “You better not just sleep while she’s here…”
“But it’s for charity!” I said. In my head.
I remember the last time me and Sal went on the ride, there was this part in the hills that just killed my legs. Probably 30 meters long, but a crazy steep grade uphill. Cramps. Horrible pain. Everything. Some tucked away backroad…so I checked the map this time and it wasn’t on there and I just figured I was golden.
So when the lady said “We’ve had to make some route adjustments” and highlighted things on the map, I didn’t really pay much attention. I just wanted to get started, cause we were already a bit late. And Sal wanted to pass some people this time. Yeah!
So – Sandhill was a pain. A lot of pain. When I was in Indiana, I used to wear shorts as long as I could. The UPS and FedEx guys would also do that – on the news you’d see who was still wearing shorts and weathering the weather. That’s how I’d gauge myself. But they were doing it for marketing and pride while I was doing it just cause I didn’t want to buy/wear long underwear while going to school. I figured if I held out on the shorts as long as I could, that’d set up the pacing so that I’d only have to goto pants and not have to goto pants and thermals. It worked. I got through the winters okay with shorts mostly. And now I wear pants only for interviews, weddings and if I’m worried others will get kicked out of a restaurant cause of me. (Me getting turned away by myself is fine.)
Anyway, I tried to apply that general idea to pacing out my gearing while going up Sandhill. Though it was not long till I was in 1st gear. Wondering what was going to happen next.
Sal was still cheery though. Which is good and bad. “Daddy let’s sing about the lady and the fly!” is fine when you’re just goofing off. Less fine when struggling to breathe and pedal and he doesn’t know the words so well and leans on you to drive the song’s progression.
Anyway, we made it up that hill. And we made it by the Church and we saw horses out there and talked about farms and then we took a right hand turn onto a little backroad that looked too familar. Now my legs were already cramping so when we got to the base of the little steep hill that really hurt me last time, I just walked it up. No reason to risk falling with Sal with me over a little hill. And there’s no one around…just me and Sal.
And that lady that just rode by me! Where’d she come from…it was the first person we’d seen in 5 minutes…perfect timing.
Anyway, it was around this time when I noticed that the first rest stop was much further along the route this year than last time. And so I started hearing the echos of Catherine’s discontent among the many voices in my head.
We did pass two people. One was a lady that was pulling more weight than my whole rig combined – except she didn’t have a sidecar. We even passed her going downhill. She was using the brakes for some reason too. Seemed like a fire hazard. And another was just standing around. When we got to the 1st rest stop, they were closing it down. The support car came by and said that I was the last dude – everyone else behind me was sent to use the shortcut. To get to the picnic on time (aka before it ended).
I could have written about how unsupportive my wife is – but I’m a realist/lemonade scammer. She gave me the out. Instead of complaining about her lack of enthusiasm for my endeavor, all I had to do was simply say she’s right. I wasn’t properly prepared, risking Sal’s safety wasn’t worth it, and we do need to be at the airport by 4 and we can’t do that at this pace I’m riding.
All that sounds a lot different than “I’m quitting and riding home.”
But it’s still the same. And I wish I hadn’t, not cause of the airport (we were still late anyway – cause – guess who was napping once we got home?!?) and not cause I’m in a weight bet and trying to lose body fat percentage points, nor cause Sal was really at risk that much (I did just flat out stop a few times when I was getting wobbly…oh – and on the descent – I saw a sign that had the steep down hill and was a warning, normally for trucks – but this one had a bicycle on it…that was kind of scary). But cause everyone else that’s battling cancer (the charity for this ride) fights a lot harder than I fought on that bike ride. Just for moral support I feel like I should have fought a little harder.
But for my family – I should plan ahead a bit better too…