UNIVERSAL TRUTH OF CYCLING # 30: THE GREAT DIVIDE
When you climb aboard your bicycle, the divide between what’s going on in your head versus your legs can be vast.
Your brain and imagination can conjure up all kinds of things, but the legs don’t lie.
It’s fantasy versus reality.
In my head I’m 140 pounds.
My legs remind me that I’m 180.
In my head I’m screaming into a lone breakaway to win The Hell of the North.
My legs say I’m a bit buzzed and screaming around the corner to a liquor store for more wine.
In my head I wish to be dancing on the pedals.
My legs would prefer I’d never left the warmth of my bed.
In my head I love to ride. Any time.
My legs remind me that it’s been a long week, thank you very much.
The divide between my head and legs would seem as if it discourages me but it’s actually quite motivating. It grounds me in reality. A reality in which I am always looking to improve.
We all have that divide. Even (insert pro cyclist here).
And pro or beginner, we can agree on one thing: there’s no greater feeling than when we have one of those rare rides when we climb on, get rolling and within a few spins of the pedals it hits us.
Our legs are as strong as our desires and fantasies.
Everything is clicking.
The divide has been closed.
Amen. Riding home today in the wind I was reminded how challenging a mere 5k ride can be when cross-winds are almost blowing you off your bike. Having an aero-frame can sometimes be equivalent to riding a metal sail with wheels. But this makes me think of riding on the track, or of the first ride on the road after a week of training indoors. There’s nothing like riding without the wind and momentarily forgetting about all the unforgivings of outside so that when you finally face them again you’re not worn down but almost invincible. Your cadence is through the roof and even on light hills you’re in the drops charging ahead. Cycling is beautiful, and I know myself so much better because of it.