Saturday, July 10, 2010

Biker Chick

So I've got a new bee in my "gotta exercise more" bonnet.

It all started when I was out in the garage one day and happened to look up at the ceiling, and noticed our family's bicycles hanging from the rafters. Hmm. I couldn't remember the last time I had pedaled around. To be honest, I couldn't even remember which of those dusty bikes up there was mine.

John knew. And he hauled it down, dusted it off, and pumped up the tires. I took a few wobbly trips up and down the block. "Man, I don't think I can do this anymore!" I huffed and puffed to my neighbor, Susan, who was watching with great amusement.

She laughed and said, "Oh sure you can. You don't ever forget - it's just like riding a bike!" and rolled her bike out of her garage. Within minutes, she was riding circles around me.

It's hard to find a level street in our neighborhood perched up here on our 1000ft. hill. I was having real trouble maneuvering even slight inclines. Terese hopped on one of our other bikes and pedaled alongside me on my next try. I was having serious problems trying to remember how to shift gears, and to keep on pedaling, and steering the handlebars in the right direction. After I nearly crashed into her after only one block, she commented casually that we really should be wearing helmets.

Gee, you think?! And body armor, too.

It was enormously disappointing to realize how difficult this once-effortless activity was for me. My leg muscled ached and burned after just a few minutes. I had to remind myself that these biking muscles haven't been used for far too long - and would without a doubt improve if I didn't overdo things, but just took very short trips.

So. I'm thinking that IF John can squeeze two bikes into the back of our SUV, and IF we can find some places to bicycle that are relatively flat, and IF I wear sunscreen and my hat, and IF the temps aren't too hot, well, maybe........well, maybe I can occasionally incorporate a bike ride every now and then into my frantically busy social schedule.

Whenever I start a new activity, I love to shop for accessories. Here's my new bike basket, so I can throw in water bottles, sunscreen, and my camera on my outings. Don't ask why the bike is inside my house. It's complicated.


And yes, Terese - you're right - I need to wear my bike helmet. Seriously. They don't call me Crash Girl for nothing. Maybe I can find some flame decals to decorate my helmet. Cool.

Why don't I remember the seat on my bike being so, erm, uncomfortable?? It couldn't possibly be that the diameter of my tush was significantly smaller the last time I rode. I'm saving up for one of those cushy gel seat covers. Oooo...

I think that I need a pilot car to drive ahead of me with a warning sign flashing. Definitely. So much safer for all involved.


annie said...

Cool wheels. Happy trails to you, Julia.

Karen said...

Way to go girl. You may want to also consider an indoor air conditioned spinning class. They are fun!

stephanie said...

I'm jealous. I used to ride all the time. Then I got SS. My eyes dried out too much + had to switch from contacts to glasses. I couldn't ride anymore as the breeze on my eyes killed my eyeballs. I wonder why some peoples eyes are drier than others? I'm sure I'd have to spend a fortune on custom made goggles that go over my glasses, and NOT covered by insurance. Have fun and take a ride for me!