Monday, April 11, 2011

Biking for the First Time in About 4 Years....

The last time I rode my bike, I was training for a 70 mile ride that was in Philly.  All summer, every Saturday, I would meet some people and we would ride.  As the summer went on, the heat got hotter, and the rides got longer.  At this point of my life, this really was the only exercise that I was getting.  The rides were fun, but could really take a lot out of me.

Our second to last ride was a 60 mile ride and I had a new bike that I had gotten a few weeks before.  I was still playing with the height of everything and remember adjusting the height of my seat toward the beginning of the ride.  Toward the end, I kept thinking about how my knee was hurting.  What happened was that I didn't tighten my seat well enough and on that long ride it slipped down.  By the end of the ride, my knee hurt so bad that I was looking at going to the doctor the next business day. 

I couldn't get in anywhere before the race and ended up only able to do 20 miles of the 70 miles in Philly.  I was so devastated.  All that training all summer long and I couldn't complete my goal.  I let my knee heal over the winter and without the weekly meetings with others the next spring/summer, I never got back on my bike.

I still have issues with my knee, but with the ending of the Ukrop's 10K race, I tried to think of something else I could do.  Last week I brought my bike in for a tune up and was ready to try it out this weekend.

Sunday was a gloomy start to the day, but I knew it would get better.  I piled my bike on the back of my car and headed out to West Creek.  Now this is a business park with very few businesses.  It is relativity flat and a nice 6 mile loop.  I got my bike off my car, got my biking shoes on, and put on my helmet.  I was really worried about remembering how to use my shoe clips and rode around the parking lot a couple times taking them in and out.  It really wasn't something that you forget.  And I forgot how much I loved the feeling of doubling my power by being able to pull the back peddle up while pushing the front down.

I was ready, locked my car and headed out to the road.  The one thing I didn't practice in the parking lot was shifting.  I quickly figured out how to shift it one way, but couldn't remember how to shift it back.  So I rode in one gear.  When I couldn't figure out how to shift it back, I almost turned back, but knew I needed to keep going. 

I haven't used some of the muscles in a real long time that I was using that morning.  I found that I did get winded a few times.  But I loved the wind in my face as I rode.  It was so freeing. 

I finished my loop and packed up the bike and my equipment.  I knew this was something that I would want to do again.  My knee didn't hurt at all, though I only did 6 miles.  I'll have to two loops next weekend to really see.

Oh and on the drive home, I remembered that it was sliding my breaks to the side that would shift me back up.  DUH!!  But I did realize that I spent the whole ride in the lowest, easiest, gear and it was HARD.  And I thought I was in shape, but biking is a whole other story.

No comments:

Post a Comment