Shadow (dariaphoebe) wrote,

Was my morning ride "just exercise", or was it more, I wondered idly. I had some inkling that part of my usual bike route was impassible due to paving. Still, I pushed up the hill to that point, only to discover I'd have to backtrack and choose another route. And any choice I made meant giving up progress, possibly combined with pushing myself beyond the bounds of what seemed safe.

When the cost of your journey is laid out before you, it becomes easy to second-guess yourself. Was I sure about this? Was it a mistake I let go too far? It's then that you have to take stock.

I retraced my path back a block and began climbing a steeper block. This was a block I avoided because my center of gravity typically meant I felt like I was about to roll over backward. I looked ahead at a city crew patching the steps beside me, and hoped I would not give them fodder to laugh about. So there was a lot of second-guessing taking place.

At times it seemed like I'd come very far, but when poring over it in my mind, the progress felt very hard-won, and not so great. At the same time, even with the second-guessing, all I could muster was that starting the journey on more solid footing and with a better understanding of the costs might have been prudent. But this was where I was, and so this was what I had to live with.

I topped the block and turned to continue my usual route, not even able to gasp a sigh of relief in the midst of my hard breathing. The sense of accomplishment, even if I knew I wouldn't try it again soon, was probably etched on my face as I pushed on up the slope past a detouring, descending car. Today, at least, I had dodged the question and come out unscathed.

Step 86: take stock before you start. You'll never be fully prepared but at least you might be better prepared when things start coming apart.
Tags: cycling, transition

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