Tuesday, July 31, 2012
As I posted earlier, it's been a crap year on (well, mostly off) the bike for me and that's caused me to do a lot of thinking about why I love this sport. I ended up happening to ride along MLK at about 7:15 last night when a fast moving group of skinny people on expensive bikes simultaneously overtook me and damned if I didn't feel the need to hop onto the back of the group. I was 'testing' my latest bamboo creation, and more importantly testing my knee to see if it is indeed back on the mend after 7+ months of mild but debilitating pain. Within seconds of settling into a teammaate's slipstream at the back of the group, I remembered exactly what I'd been missing all this time; the sense of heightened living that comes from going as fast as you can under your own power. The ebb and flow of the pack around you, the extra senses that you seem to develop to tell you exactly how far you need to be, how much gap you need to make up. All of that. It is that 'extra gear' that competition and heavy exertion put onto your consciousness that makes this effort worthwhile. Winning is great, it gives a bit of external validation to what we do, however brief and fleeting. It can't be the sum goal though, because if it is, you're totally missing the point. I don't think I'm missing the point, but I have been missing cycling. Welcome back, little by little.