Do You Miss Me Yet?
I can still remember the feeling of freedom and exhilaration the first time I was able to hold 18 mph on a flat road. It was like I was floating along. I felt like I could hold that pace forever.
I was in my early 20’s then and somehow I was a long ways away from home, somewhere on Route 96 between Geneva and Phelps. It feels like it was yesterday.
My first road bike was a Peugot, all steel frame and was probably a 10 speed. I bought it at the local bike shop which is no longer there. I sold it when I got married which was a big mistake. Do not give up all of your hobbies when you get married. You still need to have a life.
I did not ride at all until mid-40’s. I showed up for a group ride with touring shoes, rat-traps and an old heavy steel bike. After getting dropped in the first half mile five or six times I went and bought a bike, cleats and the all the rest of the stuff needed so I at least looked like I knew what I was doing.
The bike and the cleats helped some though it took me a couple of years before I was able to hang with the group. During that time the experienced riders made sure I understood proper riding etiquette and how to be safe riding in a group. And they weren’t always nice about. Safety was important.
Things have changed a lot since then. I used to be able to hang with the “A” riders without too much of a fuss. Now, just as it was 14 years ago, I get dropped in the first half mile of just about every ride. I like to joke that I used to be an “A” rider, but that was 10 pounds ago. It is really tough climbing with guys that weigh far less than I do. It appears I have gone full circle.
So, HERD family, do you miss me yet?
You will be seeing me in Zwift sooner than later. I can see it is time to get the trainer but up and running so I can experience group rides again. It seems like I haven’t been on a group ride all summer, not since I stopped Zwifting. Maybe there should be a discord channel for IRL rides?
I haven’t had a frame pump thrown at me, been cheered on as I get dropped up a hill (B.Rad Hill) or been told to behave (Bike Mom) in a couple of months. I miss riding sweep, especially when everyone wants to sweep me.
Riding outside is nice. It is even nicer when you get to ride with a group.