Mike is always telling me that I should start another blog [“you should start a running blog....called ‘Foot Strike,’” or when I mentioned my hamstrings, “you should just change the blog to “Hamstring Strike”]. Fed up with his constant suggestions, I told him I was going to change the name of this blog to “Face Plant” so I wouldn’t have to start another one and it would be generally applicable to my life.
So I was going to change my banner today [April Fool’s] to “Face Plant.” I was too busy face planting to get it done, though.
I’m picking myself up, dusting myself off, and heading out to do the usual 2 hour ride for the first time in a week. I can already feel my entire lower body hurting. But that’s okay, I think I’m getting used to that part.
Remember last week when I was booking it through some legit wind? My legs hurt, but I wasn’t afraid of it for once. I knew I could juice them out a little more and I’ll still be able to make it home, mostly injury free [there’s little in this world that Aleve can’t fix]. It might sound silly, but I thought that was kind of cool. Maybe proof that I was getting a little stronger. Maybe proof that there was some hidden potential in those legs. Maybe proof that I was getting this whole thing right for once.
But a week off the bike and a little bit of cabin fever makes for prime face planting situations. I’ve been trying to get back up but sometimes it can be kind of a struggle.
This time last year, I just liked bikes. And then it got complicated. Stupidly so. Who knew that what kind of bike you’re riding, what kind of jersey you’re wearing, or what kind of helmet you have on could be the basis of superficial judgment? I mean...seriously? We’re all in the equivalent of an 80’s take on a superhero outfit gone terribly wrong. I’m of the opinion that we all look pretty fricking ridiculous.
Still, being a single-speed among derailleurs, I fight that self-conscious mentality a lot. I know I stick out more than I maybe am comfortable with. I know my limitations are pretty glaring, too. And it’s clear that I’ve managed to put myself in an awesome situation where I can’t conveniently hide in a pack or relate to people who can ride for more than 6 hours. As far as the internet goes, I’m apparently the only female cyclist foolish enough to acquire two single-speeds and insist on riding them like road bikes. I’m going to be honest; that can be frustrating. It makes getting on the bike just that much harder.
But sometimes, I forget: success is not an option.
A mantra that originated on one of those rare days when I had the confidence to admit that I don’t really belong anywhere near a bike, it’s actually helped me stay on the damn thing. It even got me thinking I should try my hand at a crit, just to see how long it would take for me to get lapped [and oh yes, I would ride that 25lbs+ Bianchi]. People would probably take offense at that, but failure’s a lot more fun when you can spectacularly redefine “disaster” in the process. And quite honestly, I’m pretty good at that.
It’s all about attitude, people. Attitude in Lycra. Now off to blow up that Dover ride...!