Saturday, October 6, 2007

The Equalizer

Last night as I sat on the couch, I couldn't help but to admire my quadriceps.  Sure, they're not so large any more, but they are still quite defined.  Inside, I smiled smugly.

O' treacherous conceit.

This afternoon my brother's father-in-law sent me an email asking if I would be interested in joining him for a ride.  I haven't been road riding much lately, and I have never had an opportunity to join a veteran cyclist for a road ride.  In my haste to check the pressure in my tires and fill my water bottle, I almost forgot to call Ted back.

About 4 o'clock he called and said he'd be at my house in about 15 minutes.  I raced outside, buckled my helmet, and starting warming my legs up.  After a short eternity, Ted arrived.

The first mile was pretty easy.  Despite my complete lack of physical discipline over the last year, my legs are still in relatively good shape.  My cardiovascular system is another story.  After the first couple of miles I started breathing heavy.  Ted was still able to converse as though we were sitting still.  After 5 miles I was seriously out of gas.  Remember, though, Ted invited me along on his ride.  I tried not to show it, but my speed kept dropping and my gasping kept increasing.  My speech became a wheezing, gasping gurgle.

After another couple of miles, Ted offered that I might want to take a cutoff instead of riding the rest of the loop.  I didn't even try to put up a facade.  I just gurgled, waved, and turned.  Immediately prior to turning, I had been having chills.  Did I mention that is was 86 degrees today?

Once I turned away and left Ted to enjoy the remainder of his ride, I coasted.  Sweet relief.  After about six hours, I finally got back home.  At least it felt that way...having ridden half way across Michigan.  Aimee was encouraging: "I'm surprised you're back already!".  I checked my watch.  It had only been a bit over an hour.

Warming myself in a hot shower, I reflected upon how atrophied my legs looked from my lack of exercise.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Never underestimate this retirement generation!