Friday, May 11, 2007

I've Forgotten How To Ride Casually

I realized today, as I pedaled around town, that casual riding feels completely foreign to me. I've ridden in such a serious, competitive, or hard core way for so long now, that I can't get on a bike and not want to go hard, wear the full gear, etc. I can't seem to bring myself to get on a bike and not be wearing a $100+ chamois, gloves, cycling shoes, and so on. Not wearing a helmet is out of the question (and should be required for anyone whose brain is worth saving; if you think you don't need to wear a helmet...).

Anyway, so I'm relearning how to ride "casually." How to ride at a pace where I don't break a sweat, to fully enjoy the scenery, to ride with no intention other than to be on a bike and out enjoying life, ride for transportation, or whatever. It's been fun getting back to this. Don't get me wrong, I am still going to be hammering whenever I can, but this adds a new dimension to my cycling life, and I love it.

Today I actually hit the grocery store as part of my ride. Picked up a few things for dinner. It was the first time I've locked up a bike (other than on my car's rack), probably since college!

The next phase in this process is to ride into town and work a few hours in a coffee shop (Wandering Goat probably) once in a while. Luckily the big hills are always on the way home, so I can coast and soft-pedal it down to the shop, then get the workout on the way home. This way I also won't be stinking out my cafe mates :)

1 comment:

Richard Strohl said...

Casual riding, like casual sex, can be one of the great simple joys of being alive. I love riding my moustache handlebar bike around Davis for my lunch break/coffee runs. At the end of the day I hitch up my Burley Cargo Cart and pull all my massage linens home to run through the wash. Not breaking a sweat, and keeping my head up to check out the "views" is great fun. Especially when the "views" are all over the UC Davis campus in the springtime! Ahh, the joys of spring are that much better when they are viewed from a bike!