Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A gutless gang?

Wow, so, it turns out that there are FOUR gutless cyclists in this city. That's right. There are four of us, plus some other Chronies. Sounds like we've got a gutless gang forming! Now we've just got to get everyone together for a  ride, and round up all of the other gutless cyclists in the area. Nice.

Know any gutless cyclists? Or gutsey cyclists with Crohn's or Colitis? Put the word out. The gang is recruiting.

But, seriously, I think that if I weren't gutless, cycling wouldn't mean so much to me now. It is both a reason to live and a coping mechanism, especially during really tough weeks. Whether the stress is related to health stuff, academic or work pressures, or all of the other garbage that comes with trying to exist in the modern world, cycling is an escape and a mental adjustment. The pain of hill climbing is cathartic, cresting the top of the big one might be enough of an accomplishment for the entire week, and flying down the other side is when I finally feel like I'm catching up with all of those spare minutes that escaped me throughout the week.

This week has been tough. I seriously needed tonight's ride. And, while it was nice to ride with a group (~40 riders tonight) I mostly kept in line and kept quiet instead of riding side by side with anyone. Sometimes just the forward movement and feeling of freedom is more important than conversation. And, although it's not a competition, it is always gratifying to be able to drop the rest of the group on the climbs. Over and over again. Which, I was afraid that tonight I wouldn't be able to because I've been so exhausted lately (anemia again?). It was the ride I needed, although a little bit more pain and exhaustion would have been welcomed. Sometimes I am reluctant to stop riding, not because I really want the miles or the exercise, but because I want to delay returning to the real world and everything ahead of me.  If I could just keep on pedaling forward, maybe the parts of reality that I don't want to face would never catch me.

And that's the highs and lows in summary for today.

1 comment:

  1. The Gutless Gang!!! I only really started biking for real after I got sick at age 22/23...all b/c I picked up this part-time "job" in NYC called mystery shopping. :) So, I biked all over the 5 boroughs of NYC b/c some of these shops were not on the subway lines and I figured I'd make more money using my bike than paying subway fare. Anyway, it took my mind off of life/illness (even though of course I was scared about bathrooms along the way! But less so than if I were on the subway) b/c I was focusing on not getting run over by traffic. :) And then during the stretches of remission after that job was over, I'd bike for hours and hours, and it was such an amazing way to experience NYC and get exercise and escape...everything and everyone. I never want to stop pedaling either...