Monday, January 26, 2009

Glad to be Alive

Cycling is a habit. Break the habit, and it’s extremely difficult to get back into it. 

If you asked a cyclist what the most difficult part of their sport was, most would probably say the climbing; dragging yourself + bike up a seemingly never ending bi-atch of a climb requires one to look deep within oneself to keep going when every fibre of your being is screaming out for you to stop, is tough. For me though, it’s getting out of bed in the morning. That’s tough! Once I’m up I’m fine, but every day when my alarm goes off (3:45am) I question my sanity. 

It’s been 3 months since I rode on a Saturday; traditionally the day for LSD (Long Slow Distance). LSD helps build endurance, without which a cyclist is nothing. Since my return to training it’s rained every weekend, and that’s all the excuse I’ve needed to remain in bed. This Saturday was the day; the day to break the habit, and make Saturday mornings about my return to fitness. 

The point of the exercise wasn’t to try and do a century first time out; I merely wanted to break the habit of sleeping in on Saturdays, so I set out with only a single bottle of water, and no food. And wouldn’t you know it, I hooked up with an awesome group, riding a really nice slow pace, and they were planning on doing about 60km (about 2:30 riding time). Even the weather was perfect; cool and overcast. But there was no way I would make that distance on water alone; certainly not with my current level of fitness. And so I turned at Umhloti Bridge, to give me a 40km ride, and did the return mostly on my own. Looking down at the ocean, and the view of Umhlanga with Durban in the distance, I felt sorry for those still in bed. 

Thanks for reading.