Sunday, September 28, 2008

On Speaking Terms With My Bike Again

It seems yesterday knocked my confidence more than I thought. I was going to meet with Dee and some of the others this morning for an 8.15 ride but the idea stressed me out too much. I realised I needed to sleep in and think about something else for a few hours. To add to that I forgot to set my clock forward for the start of Daylight Savings, and ended up running an hour late anyway.

Hamish and I lay around while outside the wind died away and the cloud burned off. Hamish cooked us pancakes for breakfast and I sat around in the sun for a while putting off the inevitable. I spent around 10 minutes riding up and down our short, flat street practicing shifting from the large to the small chain and back and learning in which gears my chain crossed. Things initially didn't go well. I dropped my chain twice more shifting to the large chain ring before something clicked and I found the sweet spot. I learned to shift by feel - not being too cautious nor too aggressive. I learned to listen for the sound the chain makes when it's too loose.

Eventually I felt confident enough to drive down to Oriental Bay to go for a ride. The homework was an hour to an hour and a half of hills. Under the circumstances I decided to ignore the hill part of the homework. I wanted to go for a nice, slow, relaxed ride around the Bays. I needed to get my confidence back and I wanted to enjoy the lovely spring afternoon.

So that's exactly wht I did. I cruised around the Bays. Next time I'll switch my cycle computer off, but in general I achieved what I set out to do. There was a bit of a Southerly, but out of the wind I managed to cruise at a fairly satisfying pace. By the end of the ride I had a smile on my face again and from Kilbirnie back to Oriental Bay I allowed myself a bit of a sprint. It was fun.

So Cleo and I are back on speaking terms again. I'm flying up to Auckland tonight, staying at the City Life hotel and holding two days of workshops. I have a bag of gym gear with me and I'm hoping to use it. Conveniently Gearshifters is in a recovery week and our homework is light so I'm going to try to fit a couple of runs in while I'm up there.

Cleo is, it seems, a little highly strung. Thankfully I'm committed to this relationship!

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