This morning I had planned to go for a run, but that new pair of SIDIs, still sitting in the box from Christmas and newly equipped with a pair of cleats, made me head for the garage to get the Badger. I have been running for most of the winter and none of my bikes has really seen any action.
The sun was out and my ride was fairly enjoyable. I was out for a couple of hours and logged a pathetically low number of miles, but I was out at least. I felt a little sluggish because even though I have been running consistently, it just doesn't keep you in shape for the bike.
What was more significant about today's ride than anything else, though, was the moment I pulled the Badger out of the garage and looked at it. It was still covered with mud and sporting the number plate from Iceman. That's right, last fall's Iceman from hell. The race I so didn't want to finish. The race in which the mud caked my bike and sucked all the energy out of me. The race I made myself finish anyway.
When I looked at that bike I remembered how tough I am. In four years of bike racing I have had one DNF, and it was only because my bike was completely out of commission. I have faced races that were too hard, for which I was woefully unprepared, and races that were humiliating beyond comprehension. And even those I finished.
As some of you (presuming any of you are still out there) may already know, the last several months of my life have been pretty difficult. And as soon as all the logistics are worked out, the person labeled as my spouse on the sidebar of this blog will no longer be my spouse.
Given what's been going on, it's no wonder that I've been spending a lot of time wallowing. But I'm done with that now. That doesn't mean I'm finished with being sad or that I'm going to be happy every second. I am, however, done with my emotional DNF.
After all, I'm tough, as the Badger reminded me this morning.