After the last few days confined to the house looking after a bed-ridden Mrsdave and an equally unwell Troll Princess I felt a strange urge this morning, I wanted to exercise. This came as somewhat of a shock to me as I usually rate exercise right up there with dentist visits and eating broccoli, I realise that it’s good for you but I’m damned if I’m going to enjoy doing it.
Perhaps it was the fact that I’d eaten deep fried chicken balls with garlic butter along with hot chips and gravy for dinner last night, or that I’d spent a remarkable amount of time yesterday drinking beer while reclining in a beanbag, maybe it was just a desperate attempt to get out of the house for a short while? Whatever the motivation was, I found myself wanting to go for a ride on my bike.
I bought my bike a few years ago and it’s usually confined to trips to the supermarket three blocks away when we’ve forgotten one or two items, or perhaps a ride into town, but recently we’ve been trying to extend ourselves a bit. Mrsdave and I have taken a few rides, however the tight confines of our Kiddie Carrier ensure that Buster Boy and the Troll Princess don’t last in peace and harmony for long, curtailing our efforts. Today would not be like this however, with Mrsdave and the Troll Princess still not fully recovered there was no chance that they would be leaving the house on an excursion like this, I was on my own.
Unencumbered by the forty kilogram weight of kids and trailer that usually follows my bike I actually made a better start than I expected and ended up covering about fifteen kilometres, not world beating, but a pretty good start. The main thing about this morning’s ride is how much I actually learnt.
- I should either go for a ride before breakfast, or wait more than an hour after it. At around the three quarters mark, having completed a hill climb, my stomach reminded me that this type of exertion wasn’t particularly compatible with digestion.
- Hills aren’t the worst thing that you have to deal with, stops are. Breaking your rhythm is an absolute bitch.
- You have to feel horrible before you feel good. I don’t know what the psychological or physiological reason is for this but it’s true. At the point that you feel that your body is just about to give up on you you suddenly find yourself going harder and finding it easier, I can see why athletes get a buzz out of this.
- Someone needs to figure out how the hell to make a comfortable bicycle seat. Damn my arse is sore. I was even wearing the padded cycling undies that I have for long rides on my motorbike, but they did little to ameliorate the soreness.
- Comfort trumps style. I have no doubt that the buff under my helmet and motorcycle glove liners that I was wearing looked stupid, but I got home with warm fingers and ears, I’ll be wearing them again.
- Taking a water bottle along would have been a good idea, especially at the point where the turning of my stomach combined with my sinuses clearing via the back of my throat. Blech.
- I really, really need to take my bike in for a service. The rear derailleur on my bike has a nasty habit of jumping between the three middle cogs at random, which is particularly annoying as the only time I use the three middle cogs is when I’m going up hill.
- iPod. Don’t forget it next time.
- Frighteningly enough, I quite enjoyed myself.
I’m already looking forward to getting out on the bike again and trying to extend my range, something that I certainly didn’t expect. I’ve always found exercise for the sake of it quite tedious, and although I always enjoyed team sport it’s been a long time since I’ve felt inclined to make the commitment to it, but I may have finally found a tolerable activity that will allow me to improve my fitness. As the thirty something spread sets in it’s certainly not before time.