Monday, October 19, 2009

Tempo

For the past three days, I've been down with a slight sinus infection that was threatening to work its way into my lungs. I had been feeling like I was on the ledge of a full-body rebellion as it was, so I reacted by sleeping and going to work and sleeping some more. Meanwhile, the refreshingly normal Juneau skies purged themselves of a lot of pent-up rain and my cold retreated, probably due to boredom.

This morning I woke up with actual energy for the first time in days, and all my body wanted to do was run out those last droplets of viral sediment. The rain seemed to cease and their were patches of sunlight in the clouds. I pulled the Road Monkey down from my car, where it was threatening to rust to the roof rack; amazing how a full week can go by just like that. "Today," I told myself, "I will ride hard."

Swirls of steam rose up where cars streamed down the wet road. I wanted to emulate that, so I laid hard into the pedals, breathing deep, raspy breaths as I focused on the acute burn of individual fibers of quad muscles. I was an explosion of pent-up energy, burning off three days worth of night sweats, morning mucus and gurgling gunk. I powered out to Eagle Beach and back, about 36 miles round trip, in something that felt like 20 minutes, but was probably closer to two hours, although I have a bad habit these days of not keeping track of mileage, speed or time.

But it feels like I rode fast, and that's what matters.