The Final Excuse For 2013

By Cecil "Zeke" Yount | Dec 27, 2013

Today I offer up my final excuse, err, accounting of the year as to why I’m not riding my bicycle as much as I’d like. I could blame it on the weather, you know days and days of unending rain followed by cold, cold temperatures. How cold was it, you say? The weather was so cold the neighborhood raccoons were wearing knit sweaters as they emptied our bird feeders.

Last Friday was illustrative of my efforts to improve my fitness. It was a good weather day for December.  The mid-afternoon temps were reaching the low 50’s, there was a slight wind, and fluffy white clouds dotted the sky. I deemed it a fine day for a ride. First up, I needed to get appropriately attired, which meant finding clothes located in a box left somewhere following our move to beautiful downtown Buzzard’s Roost. With the box located and a decision made to ignore the slight smell of mold, I wriggled and pulled into my lycra/spandex knickers that somehow shrunk while in storage.  The “club fit” jersey (read FULL cut here) was encouraged into place soon followed by shoes and helmet.

Of course, it was necessary to “wire up” as we say in the “let’s measure everything we do” world of today’s fitness. That meant pulling off the jersey, strapping on the heart rate monitor, synching up the Bluetooth radio, letting the phone find the all critical GPS satellites despite the knowledge that I was probably not going to ride further than five miles.

Finally, underway and smoothly rolling down the road, a crazed squirrel, exhibiting madness like I’ve never seen before, dashed and pranced its way just in front of my tire requiring me to brake in a semi-straight line to avoid falling in the “horse apples” decorating the road. I didn’t need the GPS enabled fitness tracking software to advise me my heart rate was now out of the “fat burning” zone.

By the half mile mark, I was settled back into a good cadence but was quickly reminded that daydreaming on a bicycle is a bad idea as one of the local resident’s daughters practiced the fine art of make-up application whilst talking on a cell phone whilst driving with her knees whilst ignoring that big old red thing at the intersection. You know – the STOP SIGN!

Still undeterred, I climbed to the top of the rise now a full mile away from home only to find the road blocked by a mountain of trash and debris that had toppled from the county’s newest landfill – some of you probably know it as the Park ‘N Ride at exit 33. Yes, the road was impassable and a real threat of puncturing a tire on a used needle lurked amidst the empty Budweiser bottles, used baby diapers, and fast food containers. My spirit was broken much as the Genuine Miller Lite bottle of beer to my left.

I turned around and dejectedly made my way home. My mood soon improved, however, knowing that once again I would sleep securely in the knowledge that I had really, really tried to improve my fitness. As they say, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

For more information, visit http://gr8smokieszeke.blogspot.com and www.bicyclehaywoodnc.org . You may also link to Zeke’s Great Smoky Mountain 2 Wheeled Adventures under Opinion on the Mountaineer’s website.

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