Tuesday, April 12, 2011

battle of the brain, revisited

Some days, I roll out of my driveway, make it to the first major intersection along my commute, and stop.
I feel lazy, or underslept.
I don't feel like riding up the long gradual incline of Sabin Hill.
And so I wait for the bus, toss my bike on the front rack, and catch a lift that cuts my commute in half.
I admit that most days it's just laziness, a lack of motivation, that makes me do it.
Some days, I just know that I will have to pull over and huff on my inhaler, and the thought of having to do that more than once on a morning commute can sometimes be enough to make me opt for public transit instead. Because since being diagnosed with asthma last year, it has been a drag trying to ride and breathe at the same time on some days.

But lately, I've been skipping the bus in favor of riding all the way to work and home again.
I'm still lazy, and I still have trouble sleeping fully some nights.
And when I ride up the hill I am still slow.
But since I started working out in December -- weights a couple of days a week and maybe some yoga too -- I've noticed a difference.
I can pedal up the hill without wheezing quite as much.
I don't reach for my inhaler quite as often.
And when I get to work -- even on the coldest, wettest days (of which we've had our fill this winter, thank you), I feel refreshed and glad for the ride.

So this morning, with the sun threatening to peek out from behind a cloud any minute, I swung my leg over The Rivvy (feeling sorta "roadish" today) and headed up the hill. It was still cold outside. When I go to the top, I felt pretty darned good. And sweaty. I took off the top layer and rode the rest of the way in jeans, a wool shirt and sweater-vest. I felt the strength of my legs turning the cranks, saw the daffodils going crazy in every front yard, admired the dogwoods bursting forth, and smiled a little.
By the time I got to work the fog was lifting, the sun was coming out, and I was a little sorry my ride had ended. Because I still felt good, still felt full of breath and energy, and I wasn't ready to stop and go inside.
But tonight I get to ride some more.
And it's still dry and sunny out.

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