How is it each year I get younger? That’s me in the middle with Blackie.
Each winter, I train for the upcoming cycling season. I am not a racer. I don’t tour the world. No, I just cycle. I hit the gym to spin, strengthen and stretch. I continue to commute on my bike to the office logging as many kilometres as I can despite the cold, and wet weather. Come spring, I am back out on the road bikes, testing myself on familiar training routes. Each spring, I seem stronger than the season before. This spring is no different.
I am stronger on the bike than I was last fall following months of cycling. I can tell by the little things. I climb familiar hills in higher gears. I crest grades faster than ever before. I descend faster, drop lower on the bars, tuck tighter, and pick straighter lines. I take more difficult, steeper routes home. I maintain a faster pace over longer distances. These are little things, but they demonstrate I am a little stronger, faster, and more confident than last year.
Anyway, what does getting older mean? Sure, I have a few more wrinkles, a little more grey, and carry some extra weight, but with a little effort, I continue to improve. I am sure a day will come when I begin to climb more slowly, descend more cautiously, and take a less aggressive line. A day may even come when I am unable to straddle a saddle. But for now, cycling has suspended time, and kept me feeling young.
And, isn’t that what cycling is? A trip back to childhood when cycling was play.