Mind over malaise

20 07 2011

Usually my legs are twitching to ride. But sometimes they rebel, literally aching for a break.

After three days of the former, I awoke Wednesday feeling the latter. Not even the first high alpine stage of Le Tour could fire my desire to ride. Gathering storm clouds and a coolish breeze weren’t helping.

This is July?

I was ready to call it a rest day, maybe go to a movie. I even pulled from the closet a pair of pants and shirt.

But something happened on my way to the shower.


This is, after all, my Tour / riding vacation, and I’ve got a mileage goal to achieve. Last week’s lousy weather had set me back from that goal considerably, and with the calendar ticking down quickly to August, time is running out.

So I told my tightening thighs to hush up. I challenged my pained calves to get over it. And I rode.

I set out with modest ambitions. A shower that started to fall just as I turned the pedals over for the first time didn’t deter me, nor did the bracing cross-breeze (it’s hard to believe this is late July; I shouldn’t still be wearing knickers).

Soon enough I found my rhythm, the stiffness ebbed from my weary legs, and the road ahead dried out.

I rode for 72 kilometers, an easy spin along the Fraser to UBC, with a lunch stop at Mix bakery. Not a full day on the bike by any stretch, but more than I’d anticipated when the day had dawned. A triumph of mind over malaise.

Maybe tomorrow will be my rest day.