Taking a Risk

If you've been reading my blog for a while, you might remember that last year I struggled with tendinitis, followed by a nagging knee injury.  My running and dancing days were, essentially, over.

I was devastated.

For a while, at least.  But I picked myself up and re-configured.  I started swimming.  A lot.  And I kept up with spinning class.  I started strength training.  And I joined a tougher Pilates class.

But this voice inside my head kept whispering . . . bicycle.

Around the holidays, I was at a party and ran into an acquaintance . . . who just happened to be a cyclist . . . who just happened to convince me that not only did I need to get a bike -- but that I also needed to join her "women's ride" each Tuesday evening beginning in the spring.


That voice in my head . . . bicycle . . .combined with the words of that acquaintance. . . just kept getting louder and louder and louder.


I got a bicycle for my birthday!  (And a super attractive day-glo green helmet, too.)

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Now, other than a few here-and-there events and riding with my kids when they were little, I haven't been a regular bike rider since . . . oh, my teen years (when I actually rode a bike all the time).  I've been riding around the neighborhood quite a bit this spring (weather permitting) (ahem) -- but I'm certainly not ready for prime time (which means I haven't joined up with my acquaintance's weekly women's ride yet).

Bike riding is a little intimidating for the newbie.  And dangerous.  (As Tom is quick to point out.)  (Often.)  


I signed up for Bike Camp!


Bike Camp is a 4-week program sponsored by the Kalamazoo Bicycle Club and designed to teach cycling-newbies all the things they need to know -- from rules of the road to safety tips to bike maintenance to the importance of proper gear.  Bike Camp also includes a group ride each week (you pick -- 5, 10, or 15 miles).  

I hesitated about Bike Camp.  It sounded . . . well. . . a bit too routine and mechanical to me.  Maybe even a little nerdy.  But Tom encouraged me.  And the acquaintance-with-the-weekly-women's-ride encouraged me.  So I signed up.

Our first session was on Saturday -- and it turned out to be JUST what I need.  I'm going to learn a lot (already have, actually), I'm meeting other newbie-cyclists, and I'm gaining confidence.  Before you know it, I'll be a regular member of that weekly women's ride!

The downside?  It was only 43 degrees (F) on Saturday morning -- and windy.  That 10-mile group ride was pretty brutal in those conditions.  But y'know?  It was also kinda fun!  

And I did it.  

(And I liked it.)