“A cyclist is someone who is seriously involved in cycling. A person riding a bike is, well, a person riding a bike. Cyclists use the word “cycling” to indicate that they are engaging in a Serious Activity, not just a ride down to the coffee shop.” (Google)
Consider cyclists bedecked in seriously tight biker gear on narrow bikes zipping as fast as they can down the road. Then, there’s Virginia on her purple bike enjoying the scenery, pedaling, but not so fast as to miss anything: blue birds, woodpeckers, trees, deer, turtles (& the occasional shirtless scenic joggersby.)
It’s a careful thing not to crash (a cycling hazard.)
My purple bike reemerged from a loooong hibernation after an automobile accident awhile back jostled almost-behaving neck discs into misbehaving again. (More details? Click here: Crash! Smash! Bamboozled.)
Cycling the last two months has been exhilarating, but, let’s face it, also a difficult task getting lax muscles back into shape (after their long hibernation.) Bike trails have made it a joyful endeavor (despite reticent muscles) because they are so beautiful.
We’re blessed with an amazing 52 mile bike trail that goes from Williamsburg to Richmond, the capital of our state (hence the name: Virginia Capital Trail.) We can access it from the back of our neighborhood, but there are choices:
@ Jamestown there’s a 3 mile loop, and a 5 mile loop around the island. If you have a chance to check out Jamestown’s cool digs (literally), there’s cutting edge archeology & historical sites to visit.
My neighbor Laurin (who is in GREAT SHAPE) said the hilly way was hard. The first time I tried it, I almost cried. Had to turn around 15 minutes in. But now I can make it with lots of huffing, puffing and all-encompassing exerted pedaling.
My muscles may feel like jelly after, but it’s a beautiful ride. There’s a sense of accomplishment putting muscles through their paces, getting stronger so next time it’s not so hard (in theory, anyway.)
For Virginia & her purple bike cycling is a Serious Activity: getting atrophied muscles in shape, taking on hard hills, and chiseling pounds away. But it’s one meant to be enjoyed, a chance to hang out with nature, fellowship with friends & family when riding together, and thank our Creator for Heavenly paintbrushes so busy all around us (& within us.)
A thought from Virginia (the contemplative purple-bike-rider.) Just as riding a bike uphill exercises and builds up leg muscles (& more besides), so, too, we need to exercise our compassion muscles, to get them in better shape for steep mountain-sized challenges around our whacked-out world.
“Compassion is a verb.” Thich Nhat Hanh
Virginia : )
p.s. For a more in depth look at cycling tips (& the fun of a serious biker in India), check out Dev Mallangada’s inspiring blog: Cycling – What it Did to Me.
p.s.2 All photos brought to you by Virginia’s iPhone : )