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Rediscovering the joy of cycling

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Rediscovering the joy of cycling

Old 01-28-07, 10:03 AM
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EGreen
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Rediscovering the joy of cycling

Honestly there are few things I enjoy more than riding. However, I nearly always vex myself over doing so, like friggin Hamlet or approach it as an obligatory and joyless grind. Often I'll procrastinate and my attitude towards it only (predictably) worsens. Sometimes I just make excuses or make it so hugely complicated that I'll skip it entirely. More often, with great lassitude and mutterings under my breath, I'll plant my sorry butt on the saddle and about a 1/4 of a block later, if not instantaneously, I'll realize I'd rather be riding than doing anything else and it will pay the the physical, emotional, spiritual dividends that keep me a cyclist.

Does anyone else go through similar trials?

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Old 01-28-07, 10:22 AM
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I ride most weekends and try to get out in the week at night aswell. Sometimes- I just do not want to ride-Too cold- too wet- too hot- feeling tired.

I do normally get myself out on the rides and within 30 minutes I am away. In fact it is normally those rides where I do not want to go- that I enjoy the most and have a better ride.
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Old 01-28-07, 10:57 AM
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About two years ago I went through this, I just finally decided to step away from cycling for a while. I was so stressed out about not being motivated to ride that it felt like a never-ending cycle of misery. Stepping away from it allowed me to pursue other things, and to put my goals into perspective. I realized I stopped riding for fun and was riding just to see my average speed and mileage go up. The break helped me put things in perspective and now I can't wait to ride. Sometimes absence does make the heart grow fonder.
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Old 01-28-07, 11:08 AM
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Have a bike that you do not need cycling specific clothing to ride. When the urge strikes you to ride just hop on dressed as you are. It doesn't have to be an expensive bike. My "ride as you are bike" cost less than the STI levers on my road bike but I still love riding it. Riding it is about riding, not about the bike.
Use that bike for practical purposes. Go to the store, the library, the cafe, etc. You're killing two birds with one stone.
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Old 01-28-07, 12:19 PM
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My riding pleasure went way up when I realized that I didn't have to keep adding miles all the time. Yes, I'm over 50 and feel no need to compete. Nevertheless, when I got rid of the computer, and began riding for fun and a sweat, it got way better. A good sweat is all I need. bk
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Old 01-28-07, 12:59 PM
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I was getting that way towards the end of last year when I was trying to meet my mileage goal for the year. My body needed a break and cycling was feeling more like a chore, but I insisted on pushing. Next thing I know I crash, my right arm is in a sling, and I'm off the bike for an unknown amount of time. Nature's way of trying to tell me something perhaps? My shoulder is healing up ok, it's just taking longer than I expected. I did two 7 mile rides this week and that proved to be too much too soon, so I'm just going to stay off the bike until I'm ready to go (which should be towards the middle of Feb...but we'll see).

Oddly enough I'm finding myself enjoying the time off the bike a bit. I miss cycling horribly, but being away from riding has given me a chance to re-evaluate what my goals are. I ride to get some good exercise, get away from it all for a while and enjoy the outdoors. I want to do more birdwatching this year and my bike is the perfect way to do this. My handlebar bag holds my camera and binoculars, my rack bag holds my mini-tripod, bird map, and journal where I record what birds I see. Deep down inside me there is a statistic obsessed freak who is a slave to mileage goals/avg speed/speed, etc and he is very dissapointed with my decision to pretty much ignore statistics this year and "just ride". I still plan on keeping track of my miles, but I've tossed out any specific mileage goals.
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Old 01-28-07, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by EGreen
More often, with great lassitude and mutterings under my breath, I'll plant my sorry butt on the saddle and about a 1/4 of a block later, if not instantaneously, I'll realize I'd rather be riding than doing anything else and it will pay the the physical, emotional, spiritual dividends that keep me a cyclist.
Some days I'm exactly like that, especially if it's overcast and gloomy or quite windy; I feel like I'm going out simply for the sake of getting a ride in, but a little part of me knows I will enjoy it as soon as I get going. Fortunately I almost always do end up riding, and like you I'll be loving it within seconds of going out the gate.
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Old 01-28-07, 03:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Endox
Some days I'm exactly like that, especially if it's overcast and gloomy or quite windy; I feel like I'm going out simply for the sake of getting a ride in, but a little part of me knows I will enjoy it as soon as I get going. Fortunately I almost always do end up riding, and like you I'll be loving it within seconds of going out the gate.
Yes, you've got it! Crucially, I do enjoy it after all the bemoaning and debating I do prior. If it were otherwise, I'd not be a cyclist. The alternate title to my post was 'getting over that first climb' - which gets me to the bike.
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Old 01-28-07, 04:01 PM
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Every morning when I get up at 5am for the ride to work, especially on cold, snowy winter days.
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Old 01-28-07, 04:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Endox
Some days I'm exactly like that, especially if it's overcast and gloomy or quite windy;
I'm feeling that way right now. That's why I'm reading this thread in my bathrrobe.
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Old 01-29-07, 04:32 AM
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Originally Posted by EGreen
Honestly there are few things I enjoy more than riding. However, I nearly always vex myself over doing so, like friggin Hamlet or approach it as an obligatory and joyless grind. Often I'll procrastinate and my attitude towards it only (predictably) worsens. Sometimes I just make excuses or make it so hugely complicated that I'll skip it entirely. More often, with great lassitude and mutterings under my breath, I'll plant my sorry butt on the saddle and about a 1/4 of a block later, if not instantaneously, I'll realize I'd rather be riding than doing anything else and it will pay the the physical, emotional, spiritual dividends that keep me a cyclist.

Does anyone else go through similar trials?
Yes, I can relate. My best rides are with my friends or family. Going solo and watching the computer to see how far, how fast and how long take all the fun out of it. I really regret putting that computer on last summer.

It is hard to describe to the super competitive rider about pleasure.

Tim
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Old 01-29-07, 05:03 AM
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Originally Posted by EGreen
Honestly there are few things I enjoy more than riding. However, I nearly always vex myself over doing so, like friggin Hamlet or approach it as an obligatory and joyless grind. Often I'll procrastinate and my attitude towards it only (predictably) worsens. Sometimes I just make excuses or make it so hugely complicated that I'll skip it entirely. More often, with great lassitude and mutterings under my breath, I'll plant my sorry butt on the saddle and about a 1/4 of a block later, if not instantaneously, I'll realize I'd rather be riding than doing anything else and it will pay the the physical, emotional, spiritual dividends that keep me a cyclist.

Does anyone else go through similar trials?
To ride or not to ride: that is the question,
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Old 01-29-07, 05:15 AM
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All the winter garb necessary to ride seems a hassle. That's the only time of year I have such feelings.Even then at the end of the week, should I not get enough miles in, i am filled with regret.
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Old 01-29-07, 06:42 AM
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Originally Posted by GeoKrpan
Have a bike that you do not need cycling specific clothing to ride. When the urge strikes you to ride just hop on dressed as you are. It doesn't have to be an expensive bike. My "ride as you are bike" cost less than the STI levers on my road bike but I still love riding it. Riding it is about riding, not about the bike.
Use that bike for practical purposes. Go to the store, the library, the cafe, etc. You're killing two birds with one stone.
Best advice ever (not sarcasm). Always been meaning just to have a flatbar single speed for short errands around town. Unfortunately this really doens't stack up when my commute is 30km+.
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Old 01-29-07, 06:43 AM
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Originally Posted by cs1
Yes, I can relate. My best rides are with my friends or family. Going solo and watching the computer to see how far, how fast and how long take all the fun out of it. I really regret putting that computer on last summer.
I broke down and put a computer on my bike 2 years ago, then removed it last year. More trouble than it's worth.
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Old 01-29-07, 06:46 AM
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Originally Posted by operator
Best advice ever (not sarcasm).
Though it would be sarcasm in the roadie forums, where they think you're insecure if you don't parade around in a spandex diaper showing off your junk to the world.
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Old 01-29-07, 06:51 AM
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Originally Posted by chipcom
I broke down and put a computer on my bike 2 years ago, then removed it last year. More trouble than it's worth.
I had researched computers to buy one. But I came to the same conclusion and never bought one.
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Old 01-29-07, 06:52 AM
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Originally Posted by chipcom
Though it would be sarcasm in the roadie forums, where they think you're insecure if you don't parade around in a spandex diaper showing off your junk to the world.
The funny thing is, when I read your reply my brain went - "What are you talking about I swear this topic was under Road Cycling". Oh well

I had researched computers to buy one. But I came to the same conclusion and never bought one.
If i'm doing a serious road ride sometimes a computer can be good to have around. I do share your sentiment however.
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Old 01-29-07, 12:17 PM
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The reason computers are popular with the club; we commit each week to ride a given number of miles per ride. Or at least pledge to do such. Each week , as the year flies by our committments get longer and tougher rides. First thing we do when we get back is check the odometer to show we did it. I like having an idea what my average is, it tells me if I am getting better or not. I have lately been recording the rides and averages to mark my gains.
One rides about , just for the pleasure of it, that's ok. By the end of summer we should be at least riding 600 miles a month in club rides alone .
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Old 01-29-07, 01:05 PM
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The evil isn't the computer, it's the comparison aspect of what we tend to do with the data. I made peace with the device a long time ago, and at the same time quit feeding that aspect of my personality. I capture and log the results, but just for me. It's fun now to be able to review a chronicle over the years of my cycling life.
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Old 01-29-07, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by rule
The evil isn't the computer, it's the comparison aspect of what we tend to do with the data. I made peace with the device a long time ago, and at the same time quit feeding that aspect of my personality. I capture and log the results, but just for me. It's fun now to be able to review a chronicle over the years of my cycling life.
I caught myself taking way too many looks to see 'how much farther' or fretting because I wasn't doing Xmph, rather than just enjoying the ride. If I were training for something and wanted to measure my progress, they are definitely a tool to use, but I'm not training for anything so I don't need the distraction. I also found that having that computer for a time validated that I am a pretty good judge of how fast I am going and how far I have gone without it.
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Old 01-30-07, 09:42 AM
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Once in a while go easy. I mean really easy. Take a leisurely cruise around the neighborhood in shorts and a baggy tee shirt, up this block and down that one, stop at the parks. Jump in the lake. Get some coffee or ice cream. Do what you would have done at the age of 10.
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Old 01-30-07, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Ken B.
Do what you would have done at the age of 10.
Jumping drainage ditches? Seeing how far I could ride a wheelie?
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Old 01-30-07, 08:13 PM
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Thats the way this makes me feel (http://s170.photobucket.com/albums/u...=easylivun.jpg) It's something i lost as a kid, the new sounds, the smells,the different things you see when your not looking down at your front tire!You feel the breeze and it means something,hard to explain i guess,just different peaceful in a way!
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Old 01-31-07, 11:56 PM
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Originally Posted by cyclezealot
The reason computers are popular with the club; we commit each week to ride a given number of miles per ride. Or at least pledge to do such. Each week , as the year flies by our committments get longer and tougher rides. First thing we do when we get back is check the odometer to show we did it. I like having an idea what my average is, it tells me if I am getting better or not. I have lately been recording the rides and averages to mark my gains.
One rides about , just for the pleasure of it, that's ok. By the end of summer we should be at least riding 600 miles a month in club rides alone .
Average speed is about the worst way to guage your own performance. This is why we have structured training programs, coaches and power meters.
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