Thursday was my first real outdoor solo road bike ride of the new year and all is finally right in my world.
A friend of mine pointed to an article written by a bunch of neanderthal runners who claimed (ignorantly) that there is no such thing as a cyclist’s high.
Allow me to be blunt: If you can’t get a cyclist’s high, that’s better that of a runner’s high, you simply aren’t pedaling hard enough.
How, you ask, could a cyclist’s high be better than that of a runner? Simple: A fraction of the pain. A cyclist gets to experience every last glorious drop of their endorphin release – and it is good.
My ride wasn’t particularly fast or long, perhaps 18-ish mph. I can’t really tell for sure because I spent six minutes looping back and forth in front of my house waiting to see if a friend I’d invited along would show up to ride with me. Overall, including that half a mile that took about six minutes, I rode 17-1/2 miles in just under an hour.
I had a fairly strong west wind to battle for the first half of my ride but still managed to keep it between 17 & 18 mph even though I was fighting it for five of the first seven miles. Fortunately I had a mile of crosswind breaking up the headwind miles at perfect times. On the flip-side of that, once I got to the tailwind part of my trip, it got fun.
Without getting too deep into the weeds of the ride, I pulled into my driveway, got off my bike and fished my phone out of my back pocket so I could take a photo of my mileage (it’s a long story – I don’t track my mileage with my phone, I add it in manually later but always include a photo of my computer… it’s just something I do).
I stood there for a moment, catching my breath and that’s when the endorphin release hit me like a… Wait, I’m trying to think of a good metaphor and nothing works. All of a sudden, everything was okay. A smile stretched across my face and, simply put, I was happy. I love this feeling. It lasted for hours and I just basked in its glorious light.
It simply doesn’t get better than that. It was a perfect start to the season (that started last Sunday with Daylight Savings but was put on hold due to extreme cold and now snow… though it does appear that we’ll get out tomorrow).
This time of year is always a little tough for me… Usually it happens a few weeks earlier too, but I struggle with wanting to get outside to ride but being at the mercy of a mix of weather that is the transition from winter to spring.
That said, we’re close! Maybe a week or two left… but at least I got my fix.