James Durand

Are you excited?

By James Durand

It’s this time of year when my excitement for biking is at its highest, and this year more than most.

Last Thursday on our group ride, we arrived at the top of the hill and while sucking in as much air as possible, we realized our group as a whole was really tired and abnormally out of shape for this time of year.

After such a long winter, two years of COVID, and limited everything, we’ve been missing out on lots of riding.

I started thinking of how much riding I normally would have done by the end of March, and rather than getting discouraged because of my horrible fitness and diminishing skills, I smiled.

I thought about how many big projects we’ve just finished, how much simpler life is becoming, and how many rides I have planned for the summer.

It reminded me of when I started mountain biking. It wasn’t a career, it wasn’t racing, and I didn’t have any goals connected to riding. I just loved bikes, exploring with buddies, and a good bit of suffering.

I wouldn’t say this season is just like the early 90’s when I started, since so much has changed in life, but there is a feeling of newness to it that has me excited, wondering, and maybe a little nervous.

I’ve planned huge riding weeks with friends that include 4,000 meters of climbing (and 4,000 meters of descending). I’ll be riding the Whistler bike park where we spend more time flying through the air than riding on dirt, I’ve entered a three day e-bike race where I’m as green as it gets, and Chenoa and I are planning a big road ride or two later in the season.

It kinda sounds like I’m trying to squeeze the last two years of missed riding into the next four months and hoping that all the fitness and skill will come back. (pipe dream)

As I write this, I think about how I promised myself I’d simplify life and do less going forward, and the words above don’t sound like less do they? Hmmm … maybe I should rethink this.

OK, rethought it, here’s the outcome.

In reality, if all you’re doing is what you love, is it ever too much???

I’m James Durand and I’m Goin’ Ridin’…

Campbell RiverCycling

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