Mid-Life Cycling

Mid-Life Cycling

16 July 2012

An Early Morning Ride, Because I Could





Today I did something I haven't done in too long:  I took an early-morning bike ride, and I wasn't going to work.


There was a time in my life when, if such rides didn't constitute the majority of my cycling, they were at least routine.  On days when I worked in the afternoon or evening, I took such rides, and on weekends I got up early to take my long rides.


But I can't recall the last time I did such a ride.  Part of the reason is the work schedules I've had. I also can't help but to wonder whether the hormones and other changes have made me into more of a night person:  I stay and get up later than I used to.  At least I can say that, as often as not, I'm writing or doing some other necessary work when I'm "burning the midnight oil."


Today I made a point of getting out early.  For one thing, I wanted to avoid the heat this part of the world would experience later in the morning and afternoon.  But I also wanted to remember what it was like to take such a ride.


Back in the day, my early-morning rides were solitary or in the company of other hard-core cyclists, all of them male.  The latter kind left me pumped with adrenaline and testosterone:  If I went through a day cocky, it was a result of such a ride.  On the other hand, the early-morning rides I did alone left me feeling a peace with--if not within--myself and the world around me that I rarely, if ever, attained in any other way.


Today's ride--a little more than an hour and a half on Tosca, my "fixie," left me feeling contented and ready for the rest of the day.  That was definitely a good thing on a day which is not structured by outside forces.  I needed to do laundry (which I did), but there was nothing I absolutely had to get done today. But I managed to accomplish a couple of other things I could just as easily have put off. 


I say this, not to congratulate myself, but to show what a wonderful thing it is to be able to ride early in the morning without going to work.

7 comments:

  1. Hopefully this weekend. Thanks for the inspiration...

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  2. It's not just the particular advantage of the time of day that strikes me most about these moments, but also how rewarding pedaling makes these times.

    It's not the same to drive out in a motor vehicle at an unexpected time of day, however liberating the freedom from a routine schedule; in spite of the potential novelty, it's not at all the same. I've been stunned and pleased to realize how different the world is, at any time of day, from the seat of a cycle.

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  3. I was up at 6:30 this morning, and thought about a morning ride. It was already hot and humid, though, so I went back to bed until the urge passed. I think if there were mystery surrounding my less than stellar fitness, this incident would go a fair way toward an explanation.

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  4. Ailish--As someone with "less than stellar fitness," I urge you not to judge yourself. You'll ride when you're ready, and not on anyone else's schedule!

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  5. Tuk-Tuk: First of all, I love your ID/nom de Blogger. Second, your comment is beautiful, and expresses what keeps us cycling. Thanks!

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  6. Thanks for your response, Justine! "Tuk-Tuk" did seem right for a trike rider, somehow . . .

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