Call Me Pokey

It’s funny how I can obsess over things that don’t matter.  After a week out of town at a conference, stuck inside all day and night, you’d think that I’d just be happy to have an opportunity to ride.

Instead, I spent last night obsessing over temperature and wind forecasts and routing options.  I spent far too much time trying to avoid heat and wind.

In the end, it didn’t matter.  Every route is going to have heat and wind.  Besides, instead of my usual 6:30am start, I didn’t roll out until 8:30am.

It was already warming up, and the wind was howling.  So after all that obsessing, I ended up just happy for an opportunity to be out there.  I adapted.

There were two strategies employed to make the day more enjoyable.  First, I selected the Ramble route since it is mostly gravel and well out of the way of the holiday traffic.

Second, I deliberately backed-off on the pace from my recent rides.  So what if the wind was peeling the whiskers off my chin?  That’s what low gears are for.

So call me Pokey.  I was on the Ramble route, and was in pure ramble mode.  It’s a nice route.  No reason to roll through it too fast, or to be too distracted by gasping for air to enjoy the countryside.

Whether for riding a bicycle, or for more weightier life matters, I hope I learned a lesson today.

I hope I can avoid being paralyzed by anxiety and obsessing over obstacles.  Avoiding difficulty might seem clever, but it too often robs me of fulfillment.  Better to meet the challenges head-on, adjust to circumstances, and work through them.  A better place to apply cleverness.
Some of you who have joined me for our little annual Country Path Ramble, might recognize a few of these scenes.  Those of you who haven’t yet joined us for our late fall gravel event might what to consider it.

I might be Pokey, but I know how to have fun.  The only thing missing today was a riding buddy.  I wonder if there is anyone out there ready for mid-year gravel ramble?

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11 thoughts on “Call Me Pokey

  1. It's windy and getting pretty warm this afternoon but, after reading your words, I feel inspired to take a short and pokey spin into town a little later. Three cheers for "pokey-ness" and thanks for sharing yet another valuable lesson.

  2. Summer time is here! Classes our out, so I am planning some mini adventures and may find myself cycling through your "neighborhood." I love those gravel roads and woodland settings. Your pictures make North Texas seem more aesthetically pleasing than one would expect if they've never left I35.

  3. Bike Hermit, traditionally the Ramble is held on the Saturday before December 21st. Assuming that holds true for 2012 (no known reason to change at this point), that would be December 15.I've now got a nice 70-mile route that I might schedule for sometime earlier in the fall. No commitment on that, but am considering it.

  4. I'm FOREVER re-learning this lesson. Forever being painfully reminded that I'm not an athlete — and then pleasantly reminded of the rewards of having been active all my life. As in, a ride like the one above; so lovely. I have posts about times and efforts and numbers, and I have posts about long steady joy-rides through the country, gravel or otherwise. Someday — someday — the two will merge within me and I will be happy whenever I'm on a bike.

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