Adventures in Cycling. Sort of. – The Shrinking Jeans of April


May 30, 2010 By april

I put the sort of out there because I’m still very new to this idea of getting into cycling.  But, I’m going to give it a good honest go.

We have an excellent place to ride here, called the Roanoke River Greenway.  This is the same place that I take my German Shepherd for walks/runs.   But here’s the thing, I was nervous about taking my bike there.

I spent a good portion of my childhood being made fun of for various reasons.  I remember there was one boy on the bus who was ruthless just because the color of my skin wasn’t like his. (I’m part Cherokee.)  Luckily for me, I’ve grown to love my nice olive skin tone, yet, whenever faced with a new situation I get nervous.  I know better than to think that a bunch of adults on bikes are going to make fun of me, but the need to be able to blend in is still there for me.  My bike is obviously OLD, but times are what they are and for now it’ll have to do.

So. I did the next best thing.  I spent way too much money on a pair of biker’s shorts and top.  I brought them home, tried them on, took them off, laid them on the bed, thought about it, stared at them, and finally, put them back on and headed to the Greenway.

By the looks of the parking lot, I would have the most of the Greenway to myself which for me, at least for the first ride, would be fantastic.  I could tell immediately that my bike still needed tweaking so I decided to not take it far, but I did decide to open her up a bit.  I rode 3 miles averaging 14mph.  I got it up to 16mph or so a few times.

There was one point in my ride when I became aware of not just the ride but myself.  I was grinning.  Not just smiling but grinning.  The wind in my face, the power I felt, I LOVED every single second of it.

At one point on my way back to the car I passed three “real” cyclist.  They had the fancy road bikes, the one piece suits, the fancy helmets.  Uh-oh.  So much for blending in, I thought.  They’re going to be able to tell I’m a fake.  Just stick a fork in me, cause I’m done, were the panicked thoughts I was having.  Yet, they just smiled, said hi as if I were just another cyclist.

Hmmm.  Maybe I am.