Cycling’s fickle mistress

8 04 2016

Motivation is a fickle mistress.

It can wax and wane on weather, circumstance, what you ate for breakfast.

A 10C day in January is every reason to get out on the bike; the same temperature in April is every excuse to stay in. Especially after we’ve already been spoiled with some fine early-spring riding days. Even getting out on an overcast day can be tough when you’ve previously felt the kiss of warm sunshine on consecutive rides.

One advantage of riding alone; you don't feel guilty when you pull off the road for a photo op!

One advantage of riding alone; you don’t feel guilty when you pull off the road for a photo op!

This has been a tough week to get motivated. The weather started poorly, grey and cool; but it’s progressively improved.

But more importantly, I’ve lost my riding buddies. The Unemployed Journalists and Booze Merchants Cycling Union is down to one; me. One of our members is off on a bit of a road trip. The other is pulling shifts in the film industry. So even as the temperature has nudged 20C, my motivation to ride has been a bit of an uphill battle.

I used to be the lone wolf cyclist. I didn’t need, nor did I seek out, riding partners. That started to change when I joined the FRF; and in this, my Fall, Winter and now early Spring of The Big Ring, it’s been great to have co-pilots who are quite happy and eager to roll along with me at the first hint of sun or nudge of temperature. Having ride companions is also a great motivator when the weather is marginal; if you’re going to get caught in an unexpected rain shower, conversation and a pace line are good ways to get through the misery and still be smiling at the end of the ride.

You kinda get used to having riding buddies; losing them can be a hit to your motivation to get out.

You kinda get used to having riding buddies; losing them can be a hit to your motivation to get out.

But today I beat down all the excuses; I’d finished a couple of projects, put some more aside, and headed out. Alone. With just my inner thoughts. Like old times.

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