It takes a special kind of person to leave the office at 5pm, change, get on a bike, and throw down some training miles. The obsessed kind of special where groups of friends heading to bars on beautiful Tuesday evenings can simply be ignored, exhaustion from a busy day at work is pushed aside, and sitting in front of the TV after work is just not an option.
Not that I have a TV, but I really do not want to belong to this special group of people.
I headed out to do my first longer ride after work yesterday. I'm totally okay with heading to the gym and sweating out a few miles on a treadmill after work, but back on the bike, it took a monumental effort to even do a mere 30 miles. The day at the office was spent immersed in one massive case, which meant that I was counting down the minutes until 5pm. And when that magic number appeared on the clock, it was time to squeeze the last drops of physical energy out of my legs.
It seemed like a bad idea from the start. I got home to refill my water bottle and jersey-fy and found that I was out of energy bars. Screw it, I thought, and headed out anyway. And while the route was relatively flat [compared to the 40 mile route I usually do], it made it sort of more boring. I was already tired, getting hungry, and starting to mentally kick myself for conjuring up this idea when I have to run tomorrow.
Because it takes a special kind of neurotic, too, to do rides after work. And it's not just a competitive kind of neurotic. You really have to love bicycles and everything about them to do it. Passionate neurosis, I guess. The key ingredient for anyone carving out a couple hours out of their day to pedal away. Social obligations get delayed, as does dinner, and of course, just life in general.
But then again, if I wasn't out there yesterday evening, sweating, hurting, and fighting that voice that told me I could turn back after 12 miles, I would never have seen a toilet plunked down on the side of the road. Something that, while you could appreciate from the driver's seat of a car, you can really only fully experience when you hop off your bike next to it, to snap a picture.
It's sort of gross, but it made me smile. I'm going back later this week to make sure it's still there.