Friday, February 18, 2011

My life my ride....

Its amazing how a simple thing like sitting on an aluminum framed contraption and an afternoon can change ones mood to the point that I would compare it to a high. The thermometer hit the mid 50's yesterday and wet roads be damned I wasn't missing the opportunity to get out on the bike for a ride! The trails are still covered in a heavy layer of snow so for safety's sake staying off of them until its clear and I can see the land mines which fell from the trees laying on the path is how its going to be. Everything is melting so the street looks like it is raining out and I was completely peppered with dirt, mud and puddle water by the end of my ride but it was more than worth that small nuisance, I thought that I had the bug to ride but after yesterdays trip around the lake and surrounding roads I am bit and can't wait for the weather to warm up for good.

The one time I stopped to snap a quick picture of my trusty steed next to the still frozen lake.

Figuring that I could get a decent workout if I targeted all of the hills I came up with a just over 6 mile loop that would assure that I hit all of the steeper hills and off I went. Amazingly enough not a single hill phased me, perhaps all of the high RPM spinning that I have been doing at the gym is helping me more than I thought! Dealing with puddles and just an over all soaking wet road for 70% of the ride only to have the other 30% be slush/ice patches or really sandy declines it was a dodgy ride to say the least and I did have one pucker moment where the Darwin alarms sounded loud and clear.

Coming down the steepest decent I got up to about 25MPH, this hill is usually a 35MPH hill but with the roads the way that they were I took it easy but there is one section that has a curve to it and I had relaxed because the middle section of the grade had no sand and was dry. Coming around that bend suddenly there was a small patch of slushy ice sort of like where the car tires make a rut and left that small patch on the side towards the center of the road and it was lining up perfectly with my line and I had to hit it, ooops. All at once in the 1.2 seconds that I had before hitting the patch I thought "Oh shit!", "I hope the tires hold onto this", "I should get a helmet", "You Shall NOT Pass!!" in my best in my head Gandalf voice and then the front tire connected with the beginning of what I thought may be the end. The warm weather had softened it up enough that the patch split with my tire in the center and for a split second I thought "Yay!!!" and then up onto the patch I went "Oh shit!", the bike slid off the side and I was back on the road surface with an adrenaline rush for my efforts.

Upon getting back to the house with my ear to ear grin I cleaned the heavy debris off of the bike and wiped it down, changed my dirt covered clothes and felt relaxed. I did get to use my new Garmin 305 that Wify got me for Christmas for the first time and it seemed to perform as it should have, it reported that I burned 762 calories on my 38 minute ride and I'll take it! I very much dislike wearing things on my wrist so getting a handlebar mount is on the top of my list of things to do and will likely place an order as soon as I click publish on this post. I still find it amazing that I was once upon a time a 500 pound guy that struggled to walk for more than 5 minutes at a time and when I hammer up a hill on my bike I think its somehow pushing me because I know what it feels like to be caged within my own body.

My life is completely different these days because of losing the weight, I am not alone in that I am sure anyone that has done it has similar feelings on the subject. My love for riding a bike was very likely always there but I stripped it away from my options when I allowed myself to grow to more than 500 pounds but I assure you that I will never see that side of the equation again. Make the choice, refuse to accept a life that involves a cage made of flesh and the entire world gets as big as it was when we were children with new experiences around every corner. For too long I sat idle on an old couch wishing that things could be different, these days I choose to take the difficult line and go uphill merely because it will get my heart pumping a little harder than the easy path would. Taking the easy path only got me into the quarter ton club and its not something that I want to be a part of ever again so I refuse to let it be a part of my life ever again.

My bike, my life, my terms, I ride for me and that will never change I will not be caged by my own hand ever again.

As Ever


  1. I love that last sentence, T. Great post.

  2. I have not posted before- and came across your blog awhile back... I just wanted to say- I'm really glad you have been posting more frequently. You are an inspiration and I miss some of the posts like the size motorcycle you had lost each time. I also like your unique and positive perspective and less of the discussion on products, giveaways, or the like. I am hoping you continue to use the coming spring to post about your adventures- therefore continuing to motivate so many of us along with you.

    Thank you.

  3. Definitely get a helmet! Protect your precious dome! Please!

  4. Once again, love your blog!

    So amazed each time I read it and inspired each and everytime!

    Thank you so much for sharing!!! :)

  5. When I started my weight loss blog my dad pointed you out to me. He is a bike nut himself. Thanks for sharing your success with all of us. Stories like yours made me get off my butt and do it. I started at 524 pounds and just hit my first 100 lost and like you, "will never see that side of the equation" again. Thanks again!
    Starting at 500 Pounds