I always think it is slightly ill-phrased when people say they are taking a well-earned or a much-deserved day off - it would be more decorous to leave such judgments to others! - but in any case I am taking a much APPRECIATED day off - I made a big push to finish my book manuscript, and sent it out yesterday evening - didn't exercise Monday and Tuesday as a result (it was 3am Monday night and I was sitting at my computer typing in corrections, it is such a familiar feeling, I like it!) - today am PLEASING MYSELF and taking the day entirely off from work and exercising as much as I want to...
Had a VERY NICE bike ride. Ride over to park quite unpleasant, but everything was good thereafter, ride home was fine.
Really I am a person of too many ruminations anyway, I am guessing I have spent about two million hours obsessing about cycling-related issues over the last 3 years (that is just an estimate!) and I can say that this is probably cycling insight #299 - but - I gotta be patient on this cycling thing. When you have anxiety about something, it really is necessary to take it in baby steps, unfortunately - I am more the type to want to bite off new problems and swallow them in HUGE GULPS - but that will not do.
The latest revelation came from reading this post by a CU triathlete who is much, much faster than I will ever be: it mentioned a 2hr30min hard bike ride in Central Park. And I suddenly thought - yes - so many NYC cyclists do all their riding in New Jersey - but if I cannot get myself to ride over the bridge regularly this season (I know I can do it once or twice, but I don't know that it will become routine), it is not as though I could not be doing a ton of riding in the park in the meantime! There are times to avoid because of crowding, but I am lucky enough to have a very flexible schedule right now, and indeed in general compared to what most people have - if I stick to M-F 10-3, during the hours the park is closed to traffic and without weekend crowding, it still give me tons of leeway. The hills are not as awesome as what you get in NJ, but it is still very pleasant riding, and honestly, I am at such an early stage of my development as a cyclist that ANY riding is good riding! And I cannot do a midday Saturday long ride there, it is too crowded, it would make me crazy - but I could do a 4-hour ride from 10-2 on Friday, there is NOTHING STOPPING ME.
(You know, last summer I still was too nervous to ride over to the park on the road rather than the sidewalk, and I really am enjoying the actual riding now in a way I didn't at all two years ago, so I really have made progress each season of riding, even if I still feel like I am completely hampered by irrational fears.)
20 miles easy (3 park loops in 1:12:54, pretty darn slow but I was really set on just riding for enjoyment and appreciating the beauty of the weather!)
I'm going to do as much park riding as I can between now and the end of May, that's my resolution, and find at least a couple non-crowded weekday times to venture over the evil bridge - I will walk my bike the whole way across if I have to, but will definitely walk it up the first hairpin bend bit, because that's what really triggers the anxiety. More anon...
And I sent a message to the CU triathlon list and have lined up a couple possible rides to the May bike race I'm doing, one guy who is probably driving from here and another who's currently living in Nyack but would be happy to pick me up at the local train station up there, so that is progress too - I am hoping Lauren will do it, it would be fun, but I may well need to get there under my own steam.
(I am going to ride down to Chelsea Piers in a bit and swim - not sure yet if I will go to 7pm run class or not, may be I'll be a bit too knackered by then, but we will see...)