Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Bike MS: Get Off Your Couch and on Your Bike

It's a new week.   Back to work.  You chit chat with your co-workers about the weekend.  People went camping.  People went to the pool.  Out for brunch.  A local festival.  But you?  You raised a minimum of $400 (probably more, because you're an over-achiever like that) and rode 150 miles. 

In 99 degree heat.

Are you sore?  Yes
Are you sorry? No

This past weekend was my 4th time riding the Colorado Bike MS.  A few years ago I decided that riding, rather than volunteering, would be my goal.  I had never done a major athletic event before.   I'm more of a "walk quickly for the cure" type.  5k and I'm done.  No real sweat.  No real training. 

This was different.  First, there is gear.  A road ride is different than hopping on your coffee-cruiser in your flip flops.  Helmet.  Gloves.  Jersey.  Shoes.  Padded shorts.  Clips.  Tubes. 

Clips?  What the hell are clips?
Tubes?   Why do I need them?

And that's before you even get on the bike.   You've ridden a local bike path.  You've toodled around your neighborhood.  How do you prepare to ride 75 miles?  Twice.

Practice.  Find group rides with friends or a local bike shop. 

Unlike real life, on a fully supported ride like Bike MS, there are rest stops with snacks, water, first aid and bike support.  You don't have to ride non-stop.  You don't have to carry gallons of water and 10 pounds of Clif Bars.  Just ride 10-15 miles.  Stop.  Rest.  Repeat.  You can do this.

Take it as your personal challenge.   If I can do it, you can do it.
It can be 30 miles or a Century (100 miles in bike speak). 
One day or multi-day. 

Find an organized bike event near you.
Even better if it's the Bike MS.

It's a ride, not a race.
And finishing is something to celebrate.

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