First Time on the Bike After Being on the Trainer all Winter…

First Time on the Bike After Being on the Trainer all Winter…

My first time on the bike after being on the trainer all winter is rough. For starters, I stand for a long while on my bike ready to go and yet, something stops me. I stand there. All these negative thoughts go through my head:

  • Why are you doing this?
  • You’re no good at it anyway!
  • What if you fall?
  • What will the other riders think?

I fight it. I try to coach myself and say in my head that I can do this. I got this. It’s “easy peasy,” and who cares what the other riders think. I’m just going to take this at my pace and enjoy.

I clip in. I think, “oh my God, I’m going to do this….”

I ride off and then forget the anxiety that I had before I clipped in.

I’m riding. I’m thinking this is easy peasy. The wind is howling and forcing me to go slower then I would like. I push and yet, I feel like I’m not going anywhere. This is great practice for MiamiMan, I think.

As I’m riding into the wind, I’m thinking, maybe I should turn around? I keep going. I have 1:30:00 on my schedule and I’m going to do it. I’m going to finish this.

I’m riding at Cedar Creek Park, which follows the Wantagh Parkway on Long Island. It’s always windy there and during the summer, if you don’t get out early, you will be fighting all the slow, leisurely riders.

I get to the end of Cedar Creek Park and the debate to continue continues! I force myself to keep going. The wind is really heavy and it’s hard to pedal. I go into lower gear to make it easier. It helps a little but not much. I’m passing people. Wow, I thought I was going slow, I think. One or two people pass me. Wow, they must be going fast, I think.

I go past Jones Beach theatre and then jump on the Tobay causeway (that’s not really what it’s called but, what the heck, I’ll call it a causeway…). I get to the end of Tobay. It was a struggle. I stand there. I don’t know what I’m waiting for, but I just stand there. I’m sweating. I take off a layer and tie it around my waist. Will it fall off while I ride?

I force myself to go. The guy sitting on the bench is giving me odd looks.

Now the wind is lighter. It feels like I’m free as a bird. I turn my pedals but it doesn’t take as much effort. I look at my watch and notice that I’m going a little faster.

I get back to Jones Beach in no time and before I know it, I rode over the three bridges and am back at the car. A thought crosses my mind, “can we do it again?” I have a flash back to when my kids were young and we went on a ride that they loved, “more! more! more! let’s do it again!”

I smile. I unclip, put the bike in the car and put on my sneakers. My feet feel frozen. Good thing I brought socks!  I get in the car and sit. I’m glad I did that!