I have been obsessed with riding my bike to work for the last 10 years. Not obsessed as in it’s something I do, but obsessed as in it’s something I think about a lot. One summer back in 2009, I rode once a week to the hospital when I worked in the ER. That trip was 0.8 miles of bumpy, dirt road hell and then 10 smooth trail miles. The trail miles sound nice but the prairie winds of the Midwest cut through your soul as you pump your heart out and only hit a max speed of 8 mph. So, my almost 11-mile ride would take an average of 1 hour each way.
I had my first baby in 2010 and the bike has stayed on the wall of the garage for the last 9 years. I feel like my desire to ride to work has amplified over the last year. I ruminate about listening to the birds, feeling the breeze and pedaling to work but I have yet to bet my butt on the hard, uncomfortable seat.
In an effort to prepare my body, I biked 10 miles today. First bike ride in FOREVER. It was awful, and my calves are still pulsating. I didn’t really get anywhere because I was cruising around trying to figure out how the hell I could get on the bike trail without getting run over. Nebraska drivers aren’t known for being nice to pedestrians and bicyclists. There’s a lot of side of the road memorials and Mr. Miser always tells me it’s for a dead bicyclist. He also sends me bicyclists articles every time I start talking about biking to work. Headline: Doctor Shot Dead Biking to Hospital. Not sure why he thought this was relevant for my journey but there is a sliver of truth to vehicular homicide as a possibility.
Lately, everything has been lining up for me to actually pull this off. The hospital sent an email out that our new building has a bike rack room and a shower. Theoretically I could use all trail to get there from my neighborhood so I would be rather safe unless I get backed into by a soccer mom pulling out of her drive way. So here I am still desiring a ride in but not actually motivated enough to make it happen. I hate commuting to work. It can take me anywhere from 30-55 minutes to get there depending on traffic but Nebraska weather scares me. It can snow in summer around here. My car gets 50 miles per gallon, so this isn’t a money issue. The inner struggle is real.
So rather than revel in the fact that I biked my ass off today and didn’t get hit by anything, I am torturing myself with the fact that I have yet to bike to work from my new neighborhood.