Remember, as a kid, when riding a bike was fun? No time constraints, no worries, no schedule. Just you and your bike. You and a destination. You and the breeze on your face as you rode your bike around the neighborhood. It was your only transportation, and it was the BEST form of transportation in your mind.
Fast-forward to my current age of 43, and biking has taken on a new meaning. It’s no longer my main (or fastest) form of transportation. Daily time-constraints so rigid that trying to carve out a 40-minute chunk of time to ride seems like an impossible task. And if you are able to carve out that time, your ride is anything but “worry” free. The whole ride, I’m either mentally running through what I have left to do before calling it a day, or, if I’m lucky, my thoughts turn to the day I’ve already had, and the ride can be a therapeutic “escape” that can salvage a day.
Rarely do I “ride for fun” anymore. I do miss it. Don’t get me wrong…. I still enjoy cycling. I’m riding more now than I EVER have. I just miss the “fun” rides. I try (on a weekly basis) to get 1 ride in where I cover up my bike computer that tells me my mileage, speed, average speed, etc….
Those are the rides I love. My average on those rides suck. My distance is nothing to brag about, but the feeling I get after having a ride like that reinforces to me exactly WHY I still ride. The “fun” factor. On those rides, I hear things I normally don’t. I see things that somehow I pass up on my other rides. My heart-rate isn’t even measurable.
It’s those rides where I can reflect on the fact that I’ve been riding for about 38 years and I’m STILL riding.
Everytime I am working outside in the yard, I see the neighborhood children riding their bikes. I note the expression on their faces. They are having fun. They love riding their bikes.
I do too.