It may surprise many of you that I have never biked to work. The thought had occurred to me, but I always had two main objections. (1) Cycling is supposed to be fun and purpose-free. If I’m going to work, how could it possibly induce the same joy as when I just hop on and don’t know where I’m going? (2) Diabetes. I’d always been a little worried that I would get to work, have a bad diabetes day, and then have to limp home, bum a ride, or call the team car, which would be really, really inconvenient. So I never rode the 17-ish miles from my house to the office.
Until this morning, that is.
Yesterday, I decided that the most obvious way to get over my contradictory feelings that (a) my Ironman training plan doesn’t have me riding enough and that (b) I wouldn’t be able to find all the time to be in the saddle it does require would be to ride to work. So I loaded up my backpack, found a quiet-ish yet mostly direct route on Google Maps, and went to bed to have the kind of fitful sleep I get the night before a triathlon. Turns out all of my subconscious nerviness was completely unwarranted.
- My bike commute (at 5:30AM) was quicker than yesterday’s post-swim commute, when I left Milford at 7:15. All told, it took just less than an hour. It doesn’t usually take me so long to drive, but Monday mornings have been like that recently.
- The roads around MetroWest Boston are pretty quiet at 5:30. The state highway traffic was light and considerate. On the slightly hillier back-roads I took through Holliston and Sherborn, I only got passed by one car. In fact, I saw more deer than cars on that stretch.
- Bib shorts are where it’s at. I bought my first pair at REI’s annual sale yesterday and wore them this morning. They were so comfy. I love them!
- Wearing a backpack didn’t change my ride experience that much, although I did notice I carried my momentum a bit differently into corners.
- Speaking of that backpack . . . If I’m going to do this more often, I seriously need to stash some stuff at the office. Obviously, I need to bring clean clothes every day, but shoes? Why not leave a pair at the office? Ditto for toiletries. My diabetes kit is another matter; this just-in-case stuff becomes even more important when I can’t just quickly pop home or to the pharmacy. I bet I can cut it half, though. Do I really need two of everything? Probably not.
- It’s nice having a gym at the office. An hour of cycling and no stinking? Win-Win.
We’ll see what the commute home is like. It will be more uphill, that’s guaranteed.