Winging It


20140303_142538I thought this past week was going to be a bust with riding. The plan was 15 hours for the week, to not only meet a challenge goal but also to get a lot of miles in on the bike. It started off OK, a ride with the fast group on Tuesday, a painfully slow ride Wednesday morning followed by a fun MTB ride in the afternoon. On Thursday, though, I woke up feeling awful, so I didn’t ride. I didn’t ride on Friday or Saturday either because of it.

So, I resigned myself to have a bust week, doing way less riding than I had planned. What I didn’t plan for, though, was doing a century on Sunday.

I’ve done two centuries so far, once last year and the year before. It’s always been the type of ride I need to seriously plan for, never something to do just for the hell of it. Well, Sunday changed that.

Since I’m a Stravaholic I like to take part in their challenges, and this month’s was to do 160k in a single ride, or 100ish miles. So, up I was at 3 am to meet with a couple of friends to ride around the island. Then, meet up with more folks at our usual time and place, turn around and ride another 40k before heading home.

Not once during the seven hour ride was I thinking, this is a stupid idea, I should stop and go home. Negative thoughts weren’t present. I don’t know if it was due to my deliriousness from running on little sleep, or that the legs felt awesome after a few days off. Maybe both. All I know is at the end I did 169k with 3000m of climbing (I’m going all metric on you) and to my surprise felt OK on Monday.

I still didn’t hit my 15 hour goal for the week, but I think I more than made up for it. Ever had a ride where you felt like you were winging it? I think this means I have to do more centuries!

– Ashley

Enjoy Your Ride
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One Response to “ Winging It ”

  1. Pedalpilot on March 5, 2014 at 1:18 am

    How can so many experience the same things and still not “get it”? Ashley, Ashley, Ashley….you like so many cyclist get so caught up in the Strave of it all. I’ve written about this before as have others. It’s like those who ride at one rate, but froth at the mouth in hopes at riding at that next three to five more mph…so they go and buy that next lighter more “professional” machine. Then they are disappointed to find, they might ride a bit quicker….for the first few miles. Its not about doing more centuries. Its not about the lighter bicycle. Its about you Ashley. You wrote it yourself….yes, it is about taking a day or two off to recover and rest and regenerate. But really, you hit the nail on the head in the title to your article….its about winging it! Sit down…close your eyes. Tune out the world. Tune into your heart beat, your breathing. Feel your entire core relax. Tell your entire core to relax. Tell your arms to go limp. Feel your arms go limp. Hear nothing but the beat of your heart. Feel nothing by your core exhausting your breath. Tell your legs to go limp. Feel your legs relax. Gently, slowly, let the fresh air flow back into your core. Feel your core inflate. Notice how it feels in comparison to your arms, your legs, still calm, still limp. Your mind clear now, resting. Allow your thought to see yourself as you move through the air, powered by your body, propelling your bicycle as never before. Feel the exhilaration generated by your mind move down the spine, radiating from your head. Feel that exhilaration move into and down your arms; into and down into your legs, this is your next ride. This is your will. This is your will generating your next ride loading into your arms, your legs, your core. Now, rested, relaxed, rejuvenated, you are ready. Now you are prepared to wing it. Ride with the wind and you are there. The joy of the world by bicycle…loving the bike…Winging it.

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