Gloves Are Off

There comes a time during spring riding when I’m crossing the ever so fine line of being overdressed and just right. You’ll notice that I didn’t suggest that I’d ever be underdressed. I never ever underdress. I have a thing about being cold so for me during the spring I’m usually riding a round with a bright red face because I’ve got on too many layers or if I’m lucky the flush is coming only from my effort rather than too many layers of high-tech fabrics. Well, it seems we’ve reached this time of the year.

Saturday I was just right. No gloves. No hat. Leg warmers and one pair of shorts. (Yes, I’ve been known to double-short on occasion – I don’t want my legs to get cold…) Perhaps I did have one too many layers up top and maybe I didn’t need the buff/neck tube thingamajig. But everyone needs a little bit of a comfort blanket now and then.

So Saturday was spectacularly warm and very welcomed. Sunday not so much. It rained. It poured. The wind was fierce. But thanks to my overdressing tendencies I was just fine – nothing Sealskin socks and gloves, double shoe covers, thermal tights, waterproof MEC pants (yes the baggy ones), three layers, plus a thermal jacket, plus a rain cape – couldn’t protect me from.

The only thing I battled on my solo three hour journey on Sunday was my brain. Seems like my body isn’t on the same page as me right now. I want to be able to do back-to-back hard and long days. I want this right now. I believe I should have this right now. Problem is – I don’t. My body isn’t ready. So instead of admitting this during my self-induced pity and sufferfest on Sunday, I did something that I know I should never ever do – I gave up on myself. I did think for a bit that I was under fueled so I took this opportunity to find solace and energy in two cans of Coke (yes, I know) and the most delicious “gas station brownie” ever (you know the one in the cellophane wrapper that is super gooey and every so chocolatey). Well this infusion of sugar and chocolate did nothing for my legs but it did put me in a bit of sugar coma for a bit – enough to get me home, if every so slowly.

This getting back on track or rebuilding fitness or whatever you want to call it – well, it isn’t fun. Now I know why comebacks are such a big deal. It is hard to comeback. It so much easier to get better or to improve rather than rebuild and then get even better from there. So yesterday was a bit of not-fun day. But it is all about perspective. My day was still pretty darn good considering I was able to get out and ride my bike for three hours – slow pace and crazy brain notwithstanding.

As one of my taekwon-do coaches said to me after I lost a sparring competition “It takes losing to appreciate how much you value winning”.

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