Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Third Law of Motion
...or so I thought. But last night after work, I hopped on my bike to experience what can only be described as a meteorological phenomenon. :-)
I rode against the wind. Both ways*.
It wasn't the greatest ride of my so-far-short biking career. I didn't want to work out. But I wanted to work out. But I didn't. But I did. Know what I mean? (We're definitely "equal and opposite" on that one). It was a GORGEOUS day -- and after the weeks and months of nasty heat and humidity, I was dying for some fresh air (and scared to not take advantage of the weather, lest we never experience it again, and jump right into winter). But I had a crabby day at work, had ZERO energy, and was hungry due to skipping my snack at work (never a good idea), and then fighting traffic all the way home.
The desire for fresh air won out, and apparently the rest of Minneapolis had the same idea: I really had to fight for my space on my beloved parkway, and as a relative biking newbie, I must say -- it was terrifying. I had bikes whizzing past me, rarely dinging a bell or calling out "on your left!" I didn't like it one bit, and I think that my future rides -- at least until I get more confident -- will be restricted to less trafficky times.
And about that wind -- yeah, I don't know how it happened, but on the way OUT, I was really struggling and thought, "Well, at least on the way home the wind will be at my back!" Nope. On the way home, I was definitely still struggling, and definitely still riding against the wind. The equal and OPPOSITE reaction, of course, would have been to have the wind at my back.
These are the times I miss running -- the pavement never lies. When you push at it, it pushes back. There is no switching of gears or futzing with a bell or basket. You just GO. And then you turn around, and GO home. No confusion over wind or speed or terrain. It is all pretty evident and obvious, right beneath your feet. Unfortunately for me right now, the "equal and opposite" reaction of running is intense foot pain for a few days - something I'm not to keen to experience again anytime soon.
There are other "equal and opposite" phenoms to examine: for example, my extreme use of energy will result in an extreme case of exhaustion. My expulsion of water via sweat results in taking in a lot of water. And most importantly?
The ambivalence I felt about working out resulted in the passionate desire to do it all over again the next day.
I popped out of bed this morning at 6:09 AM, and by 6:20 I was on the pavement -- for a nice long walk. I grabbed a cup of coffee** from the local bakery, and walked about 90 minutes. It is blissful in Minneapolis today -- 58 degrees, sunny, blue skies... The pictures attached were the reward of the journey. I knew that "my" lake (Nokomis, for those who know Minneapolis), would be absolutely stunning this morning, and it did not disappoint.
Off and running,
*Insert obvious joke here about walking to school uphill both ways in the snow... and LIKING IT!
**Some of you may know that I gave up caffeine and diet coke back in April -- I did this successfully for 3 months, and experienced a drastic decrease in headaches and heartburn. But I've missed the ritual of coffee, so I've slowly started working some decaf back into my menu, alongside a dose of Pepcid / Prilosec... so far so good!