I like a challenge, I guess, and am missing the accountability of the 30 Days of Biking challenge I did in April so I decided to set a goal of riding 50 miles each week. Fifty miles is peanuts for some riders but a pretty good number for me, I think. Fifty miles a week works out to 200 miles per month and when you work in the 200 miles I've already put on my bike, a thousand miles by the end of September!
The 50 miles a week goal seemed reasonable when I set it but I've already discovered that life can get in the way and even a reasonable goal can feel, well, unreasonable. I planned to kick off my 50 mile goal with a nice 18 mile ride with Owen on Monday morning but before I could suit up and go my mom called and asked if I would go to the ER with her and my dad. Of course I would go, I told her, my bike ride could wait until after our trip to the ER.
What happened to Dad? Long story short Dad fell from a ladder Saturday morning and bonked his head. The ambulance took him to the nearby hospital where they determined he had a concussion and, after checking him out, sent him home to rest. He rested but then his back started to hurt really bad. So we took him to the ER Monday. The place was packed and we had to wait a long time to get seen. Finally the doctor checked Dad over, ordered x-rays and discovered that Dad has a compression fracture in his T12 vertebrae. No wonder he was in pain! Despite the fact that Dad was miserable, one of his biggest worries while we waiting in the ER was that I wasn't getting a chance to ride my bike. That was awfully sweet of him - he's the kind of guy who looks out for other people more than himself.
Dad actually sitting still - Christmas 2009
After the day in the ER I dropped my parents off at home and drove myself home. I was exhausted and decided not to ride. Tuesday morning I woke and still felt too wiped out and stressed to ride so I did what I often do when I'm stressed - I cleaned. I suppose biking would have been a good stress reliever (though it was pouring rain much of the day) but I ended up cleaning my room from top to bottom. It felt great to have it done but I didn't get any miles in towards my 50 mile goal.
So today I decided I needed to ride at least 13 miles. I got up, took Rose to school, took Rocket (our 6 month old pup) to the dog park, wrote, put some food in the crockpot for dinner...and at some point I started wondering if I was putting off my ride. I think I was and I think it's in part because I get kind of scared about riding on my own on the road. I have some theories on this but I'll write about them some other day. I do think it's kind of funny, though, that I have a road bike and I'm afraid of riding on roads.
Oh well. I told myself I had to get out and ride and even though it was raining a bit I got on my bike and rode 8.4 then rode again later in the day to get in thirteen. Thirteen miles down, 37 more miles to ride by Saturday. I'm thinking the best way to make sure I get my miles in is to ride right away in the morning. Geez, I'm not a morning person but I have a full day tomorrow so morning it will have to be.
p.s. - Dad, by the way, is doing okay. His pain is more under control and Mom says he is resting well. The hardest thing in the weeks to come will be making sure he rests. He doesn't sit still well - sort of like me.