Begin questioning my sanity… NOW

April 5th, 2010

It’s been a long and wet winter here. We live down a dirt/sand/gravel road, and when it rains, it’s difficult to get a car down the road due to mud. And impossible to get a bicycle down it. As a result, I’ve only been able to ride my bicycle to work once since November, and that was in January.

Last Thursday, I intended to ride in to work, but discovered my front tire wouldn’t hold air. I had heard about a wonderful local bike repair shop, so I dropped off the wheel there. The owner replaced the tube and checked it out, and charged me, yes, $4 — including labor and the tube. Nice.

So today was my first ride of the season. I rode a total of 21.8 miles (35 km) today, which was probably unwise enough for being as out of shape as I am. It’s 9.6 miles each way to work, plus I did some errands over lunch.

But add to that the winds — 30 MPH (48 kph) with gusts to 43 MPH (69 kph). This morning, they were weaker and also mostly at my back. This afternoon, though, they were mostly a vicious crosswind. If you’ve bicycled much, you’ll know that’s less annoying than a headwind, but is still quite annoying and takes a lot more energy to battle than you might think.

So, I am now rather sore. And the question is: will I be silly enough to do this again tomorrow?

The answer to that probably depends on how late I stay up watching the Butler/Duke game tonight, as I have to get up an hour earlier on days that I bicycle to work.

I found that the bicycle rack at work — which, somewhat to my annoyance, was moved indoors last year — has been rather disused. It is in a rather dusty and dirty part of our manufacturing shop, and there were large metal bins completely blocking the path to it, which I had to move before I could park my bike.

Then, of course, it was the usual comments — which I take with a smile — about somebody that shows up to work wearing cycling shorts & shirt.

It should be noted that I change into professional clothes at work. But my commute is too long to wear them on the way in and expect to be presentable, non-smelly, and pain-free.

In any case, evidence that this may not have been the best day to start my commute: it hurts to sit at the moment.

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  1. Mark Van den Borre

    I realise that in the US, this might be for nutcases only, but it really isn’t over here in Flanders. Cycling to work is the sensible thing to do!

    Reply

  2. dichtbijzee

    Get back on that horse!
    No, seriously the only way to get your shape back is by keeping at it. I do recommend that you keep it to a minimum, so only cycle to work. Not go for any errands. than you should be fine i think.

    Reply

    John Goerzen Reply:

    Yep, I hope that starting next week I will be able to cycle in 4 days a week. It is quite windy today, and I’d have a long headwind, and am still sore, so I opted not to ride today. But I’ll get back into shape in a few weeks, I think.

    Reply

  3. Sean

    Crazy? I can’t wait for my office to move farther from home so I get more of a ride.

    Reply

  4. llivv

    Winter will do that unless you are crazy enough to ride through it, Heh…
    I just reassembled my old Huffy on Friday.
    The rear derailer needed to be cleaned badly, and I also had to replaced the freewheel and chain. Finally I laced half the spokes on the rear wheel. Than I got to take it for a ride down to the Lake, about 4 miles, with a couple of good hills to climb.
    It was one of those spring days when you can feel the temperature change about half a mile from the lake and than again near the end of the half mile long pier.
    I wonder if there will be many riders going to DebConf10?

    Reply

  5. Ralph

    There is nothing more annoying when biking than wind. Unless of course it is rain being driven by the wind.

    Reply

  6. BMeph

    @Ralph: Sleet beats rain for annoyance factor, Hands Down!

    @John: I hope you have the whole ensemble – including the wrap-around goggles and the snap-in toe block shoes… ;)

    Lucky me, I grew up in Tucson AZ, and now live in San Diego CA, both cities, well-known for down-right boring weather.

    Reply

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