I went for a bike ride today after learning that when David works out he burns around a thousand calories an hour, at least according to his little heart rate monitor and software. Of course, he exerts a lot of energy. I don't.
Still, he encouraged me to go on an hour bike ride. Sounded simple; 30 minutes out, 30 minutes back. How hard is that? I agreed and after his nearly 10 mile run, we switched places and I went out on my bike.
I meant to grab some water but forgot, however I DID bring something equally important: my iPhone. It makes sense because I left with no spare tube or tools or even the knowledge to fix a flat tire, so my phone was absolutely essential. Besides, I decided to use it to listen to music.
My ride started out good. It's amazing how much I actually saw riding a bike rather than driving in a car. My thoughts seemed clearer on a bike and though I was still amazingly tense, I have to say that I felt like I as beginning to relax. Later I realized I wasn't so relaxed.... I grip my handlebars so tightly!
On my way out I passed by a little church advertising free family movie night every 2nd Saturday of the month. I wondered how it was doing with that; were they bringing in families from the neighborhood? Was it for the church goers to build community by enjoying a good time together? Did they have people critical of the type of movies they played? (because even "G" rated movies I can easily find fault with!)
Then as I went passed this little white, traditional looking church, I saw that right across the street was a house that sustained fire damage. I wondered if the church was helping this family, regardless of if the people attended. I rode on but wondered.
As I got out a bit further, open fields replaced houses, I saw a beautiful mountainside with tall green grass intermittent with bright yellow mustard flowers. The trees were uniquely shaped and had no leaves; it looked so beautiful. I wished I could take photos there, really appreciated it's beauty. Again, something so easily missed by being in a car.
Before the Big Hill that is perhaps only "big" to me, I heard the ding of my iPhone going off. Ah, an email! Of course, I should ignore it but I'm so curious so I stop. This was a bad decision, because though I felt I was doing pretty good, as soon as I dismounted off the bike I instantly felt nauseous and lightheaded. I couldn't figure out what to do first: Throw up or pass out? So I did neither. I just sad down which began to help both feelings subside. I shakily got on my bike and have to admit, I felt pretty dizzy for the next several minutes. I was tempted not to climb Big Hill since I only had 7 minutes before needing to turn around to go home, and yet I HAD to make it to the top of this tiny Big Hill. So I did. Of course, then I had to go down a ways because it felt so good to go fast. I failed to realize that by doing so I'd just have another incline to face on the way back home.
I will admit that coming home, I was quite slow. Instead of focusing on pushing myself of going faster I just wanted to get home.
On my way home, I of course almost got in an accident, and I again saw things I'd not be aware of if I wasn't on a bike. I saw a flyer asking if I'd seen a teenage runaway boy. I said a quick prayer for him also, wondering if the family went to church, if they had people in their life to be with them, helping them. That the boy would be safe and return soon.
I was happy to be home, and David eagerly asked how my ride was. I said slow. I took off the heart rate monitor and he looked at my results. It's pretty disheartening. I was out there for over an hour and, well, basically David can run faster than I can bike! How sad is that? I was also saddened to see that I don't burn 1,000 calories an hour..... it was substantially less! David enjoyed analyzing my results, noting when I got stuck at a light, where I went, average speed, average heart rate. He sent me out saying to try to keep my HR under 150 but that was impossible. I seemed to average closer to the high 160's..... supposedly one time spiking to 191 but I don't recall noticing that.
Will I bike again? I think so. It was a nice hour; I enjoyed the time of reflection and solitude. I enjoyed being alone with my wandering thoughts and questions, without being in front of a computer. It was just a bit easier to let my thoughts go rather than demand an answer for them.
I kinda liked it.