After lunch today I loaded my bike on my car and headed out in search of a pleasant local ride. Just as beauty is in the eye of the beholder, pleasant is in the experience of the pedaler. Some love barreling down single-lane tracks over rocks, through underbrush. Some prefer challenging paved roads with steep hills to climb and descend. Some like a busy bike path where they find safety in numbers. But for me, pleasant is a lonely, country circuit; with the occasional not-too-steep-or-too-long hill; without too much gravel or too many washboard ruts. Oh, and no head-winds.
I rode hard today. I walked up a few hills. I talked to myself a lot. Need to be more fit. Maybe the tires need more air. Should have driven the route first. Should have gone somewhere more familiar. Stop whining. Just ride to that next rise.
The worst moment was when I realized that I didn't have the stamina to ride the long circuit that I'd planned. I had to turn around and ride back up those gravelly hills I'd just come down and down the rutty inclines I'd been unable to climb.
I made it back to my car. Tired. Disappointed in myself. I rode through idyllic pastoral scenary. I worked hard. Stop whining.