Just one of those stupid spur of the moment ideas. One of those choices of chance designed to spur not a specific outcome but a change of habit. Maybe a change of base assumptions or a re-approach to a way of working. You have to trust impulses now and again. Give into chance and honor slightly harebrained schemes or you sink into a slightly musty and dour sameness.
I’ve mentioned before that the body is lazy. Works just enough to make itself strong enough to deal with the daily stress it encounters. You dig ditches? You push paper? You make verbal sense of things over a microphone? You do 6 sets of free weight bench presses every other day. If the stress remains the same on a consistent basis, you form against it and the unneeded bits wither and die.
Basically, you take a “set”. Strong and resilient in one direction only, while that which supports you becomes a bit frail.
I think the brain is the same way buoy get lulled into a way of approaching things. The rote approach. So how do you shake tho be up enough to keep it vital. To keep your brain engaged and always asking “what’s next?”
It’s why we take a trail we’ve never ridden, or put together a bike in a different way. Deep down we know that we remain alive and vibrant only when we shake things up a bit.
Which is more or less why, on the second of this month, as I rode for the second day straight, it seemed obvious to pull a 28-dayer. Ride once each day for every day in February. No mileage goal. Just on a bike for a bit, with any distance acceptable. (Though since the levee gate is a mile away, and that’s always been my de facto log-a-ride ride, let’s say two miles on a ride will be the minimum…)
There’s certainly precedent for this - the whole April = 30DaysOfBiking meme which popped up a few years ago. I did it then and it’s a nice excuse to get out and ride when things are warming up and spring is in the air. Maybe it is cheating to use a shorter month, but then again, February weather can be varied.
But, that is really starting to parse the whole idea a little too much.
Fact: I have not been riding enough. Fact: I’m out of the habit of daily commuting/riding (being as my commute is generally under the roof of the same structure), and as I mentioned recently, this is forcing me to relearn the habit of how to get out of the house quickly.
It’s probably just the way my brain folds, but that’s what I’m doing this month.
A more elegant solution has been teed up by MG o’er at Chasing Mailboxes D.C. She has opened up the 2013 Errandonee, beginning this weekend on Saturday, February 9th. Wander yonder to get more info, but with a bit more panache and formality than my little endeavour, MG has tasks and destinations to be covered and logged, along with a small bit of paperwork to include.
February 8th, 2013 at 8:43 am Jim — Lovely to see a post here again! I did MG’s Coffeeneuring Challenge this past fall and was glad for an excuse to get out and ride and find new coffee shops in my neighborhood. I, too, have felt some bicycling malaise. My body is taking winter weather more personally this year; my knees ache in the cold and I am tired from the tumult of my career-change (and the resulting change in the social and psychic landscape). But there are small victories. Last night I rode most of the way home (I go multi-modal a lot) and while I felt dreadfully slow, my legs felt smooth and fluid and I enjoyed the ride. I look forward to warmer days and a corresponding increase in the inspration to ride longer and farther on the weekends. Happy riding –BH
February 8th, 2013 at 5:58 pm Fact: You will be a better person for doing the Errandonnee. :)