With the beginning of the Tour de France, I have once again started riding my bike. There is something about watching my favorite sporting event that gets the cycling juices going. It brings up the joy, pain, and personal triumph created by nearly 19,000 miles on two wheels.
When riding last night in the still oppressive heat, I was reminded of why I have kept my hair short since I was in about 7th grade… all that hair is a pain on the bike. It flies around, it gets matted with sweat and funnels the stinging liquid into your eyes, and it’s just downright hot. Your head is one of the biggest heat exchange sites in your body (with the exception of the skin in general) and all that hair feels like a thermal blanket on a hot bike ride.
While riding last night, it returned – that feeling that I only get while on a bike. There is a feeling of clarity when you are alone with your thoughts. It is a time (I assume as the endorphins kick in) that everything seems possible… the doubts are removed… the doors all appear open. It is a very “in the now” time, when the most important thing in the world is that very moment – connecting with the sound of the tires on the road, the twitch of muscle as it pushes the drivetrain, the wind enveloping you with a gentle hug, your past – present – and future all tied together in one moment.
Hey, I know it sound new-agey and Zen, but it really is how cycling has always made me feel. Whether turning the crank the first quarter turn to begin a ride or 175 miles into a 200 mile MS 150.
Yeah…. that’s why I’m cutting my hair. 🙂