Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Confessions of a Solo Cyclist

It's a beautiful fall day.  Cool, sunny and not a cloud in the sky.  I know because my desk faces the window.  I'm watching birds frolic in the sky and I'm feeling a bit cranky and envious of them.  I need a break!  I think I'll go for a ride.

Confession:  I love to ride my bike solo.  It's exhilarating.  I can choose whatever path might tickle my fancy.  Freedom.  I can stop to tweet pictures, or jot notes down for my blog or enjoy the scenery.  Or's up to me.  Confession: I tend to like to be in control, and when it's just me it's more acceptable.

Practically everyone has advised me to never ride alone.  Buddy system and all.  Safety in numbers.  But as you know, I'm stubborn.  I like to take risks and go with the flow.   Now I do have to say, that since my accident I've been a little leery about going out alone.  (Getting knocked unconscious is always better when you have friends there to help!)  But the draw of a solo ride on a beautiful day is too much for me to pass up.

As a triathlete, during peak training times it's often necessary to ride solo.  After all, when I race it's a solo endeavor so it's best to train under the same conditions.  No one to draft in a race, as in a USAT sanctioned race, drafting is a no-no.

I like riding by myself mainly for the serenity.  My days have been hectic lately, and to take an hour or two and disappear with my bike is heaven.  I can talk to myself (or to my bike) and no one notices, or if they do I am happily unaware.  (Confession:  a peek into my personality...I talk to myself, sometimes out loud.  Ok..ok, often out loud.  I talk to the TV, especially during something particularly dramatic such as the Presidential Debate or Real Housewives of New York.  Girrrl!   It cracks my kids up.  Don't know you do it too!  I am a bit silly, and it makes me laugh.  Life is too short not to have laughter...especially at my own expense).  Back to the post... My "me time" is rare, so it's a little indulgence to venture out on my bike.

Confession:  Ok, sometimes I watch The Real Housewives.  Hey, any drama that I'm not really part of is alright in my book!

It was an awesome ride today!  I was smiling, and people passing me probably thought "what the hell is that chick smiling about?!"  I smile when I'm happy, and today I was definitely happy.

I rode out of suburbia and into the country.  Indiana has wonderful country roads, and it's nearly impossible to get lost because all roads seem to run in a box shape.  Traffic is usually minimal which makes for a peaceful ride.  The roads today were lined with trees of yellow and red, and cornstalks that had turned golden brown with autumn.   Some would say the fields are dead, but to me they are alive with beauty.  I look at nature differently now, so even a cornstalk can be viewed as a work of art.

Of course, I still manage to get lost from time to time.  Thank God for my iPhone and GPS otherwise I may end up in Ohio.  I told you I get really into my rides!

I did not get lost today.  The only drawback today was the winds.  35+ mph wind gusts.  They were not noticeable on my way out, as they were blowing in the same direction I was riding.  However, when I turned around to head back, it was a completely different story!  My legs were working overtime and I could barely get over 14 mph.  It was a bit of a drag (ha ha ha).  I had to stop several times to catch my breath!  (And to take pictures.)

But it was so worth it!  I'm home safe and sound and back at my desk.  Back to reality so to speak.  I love how a brief reprieve during the day allows me to center myself and come back with a clear head ready to get back at it.  Life is a gift!

Just had to share with you.  As you know by now, this isn't the only blog post where I've confessed little things about me to you.  Just being honest.  See you soon...


  1. Biking is fun during the summer but not when it gets cold and rainy. Like you said, it's a great way to clear your head and start afresh.

    Your roads in the picture look very long and isolated so when you bike alone make sure you tell someone your route in advance -safety is always key.

    1. Agreed! I'm a little too daring perhaps because I do not always let people know where I am. I should start doing so! Thank you for the reminder!

  2. What a wonderful post. How vividly you captured and conveyed the peace, freedom and exhilaration of riding your bike all alone down those winding country roads. Every day I take long solitary walks in nature, and feel exactly the same way. But a bike ride must be even more thrilling because of the speed and motion and the distance you can cover.

    1. Why thank you! I do like to ride fast....but it's nice to stop along the way to enjoy the sights around me. It suddenly gets very quiet when I do stop and I love that.