Only through our connectedness to others can we really know and enhance self. And only through working on the self can we begin to enhance our connectedness to others.
~ Harriet Goldhor Lerner
Gain health from lusty, heroic exercise, from free, firm-nerved adventures without anxiety in them, with rhythmic leg motion in runs over boulders requiring quick decision for every step. Fording streams, tingling with flesh brushes as we slide down white slopes thatched with close snow-pressed chaparral, half swimming or flying or slipping — all these make good counter-irritants. Then enjoy the utter peace and solemnity of the trees and stars… Find a mysterious presence in a thousand coy hiding things.
~ John Muir
What a week it has been! I am happy to report that I completed the Seagull Century. Oh, not 100 miles. I decided when I signed up that I’d do the metric century (100 km.) and that I would take my time doing it since there was no requirement this year that it be done all at once. I started out moving at my usual turtle speed. By the end of the week, I’d grown faster and stronger. It was amazing, to me, how fast I adjusted and changed.
My grand total, as of Friday evening, was 120.54 km which converts to 74.9 miles. If I had it in me, I would have gone out today to see if I could make it to 100 miles, but I took it easy. 6.3 miles today, which gives me 81.2 miles for the time period given for the Seagull Century (October 3-10).
A good friend, who I miss a lot, joined me on this mission and will be completing her 100 miles today. She’s been a hardcore cyclist for a while and I would have expected nothing less from her. Even though we are quite a long distance apart, I’m so glad my friend joined me. It helps to know there is someone there with you, even if it’s only in spirit. M also joined in from time to time. His mileage for the week was somewhere around 30 miles.
I learned quite a bit about myself by doing this. I am stronger than I believe I am. I can, in fact, complete things when I want to. And there was something about being out and about on my own, at times, that somehow brought me closer to nature than I already believed myself to be. I have been doing a lot of honing in on what’s important to me, and what work I can do to support that. There is something in the rhythm of riding (and walking) that produces clarity. I have ideas. I’m not sure yet what I will do with those ideas, but at least I feel as if I have a sense of direction now.
I had beautiful weather all week. Wednesday was the hottest day, in the 80’s (F). I’m not sure which was the coolest. Luck was with me in terms of the wind. My first few days of riding we had relatively light winds. It got increasingly windy beginning on Wednesday which made the rides a bit harder when there were headwinds which is at least half of the ride but sometimes, around here, it feels like the wind is coming from all directions and you’re always going into it. I don’t know if that’s related to the water or some of the wide open spaces. Whatever the case, wind resistance is as good as hills in terms of making your legs work hard.
To celebrate my accomplishment, I went to Assateague Island yesterday to ride around a bit more, to visit with the wild horses, to sit by the ocean and listen to the waves, and to just relax for a little while. It was crowded out there, especially for the off-season. I know I mentioned that the last time I went there. I don’t really need to read any articles or watch any news stories to know that the pandemic has been driving people outside, to places they don’t normally visit or to places they wanted to visit. The campgrounds seemed pretty full, some spots taken up with large groups of people. The bike path wasn’t too bad until you got near the visitor’s center. I skipped the steep ride up and over the bridge because the path for pedestrians and bicycle riders is narrow and there were too many people on it.
It was, as always, beautiful out on Assateague Island. The goldenrod is blooming all over the place, including on the dunes. I took lots of pictures and will bring you some of them on Monday with what I think will be my Walktober post. I was hoping to catch a lot of autumn color, but it’s just getting started here. We might be well past the Walktober dates before we hit peak fall foliage.
Thank you for stopping by today, and sharing a little of my metric century ride with me. I took a lot of photos on my rides, mostly with the phone camera. Sometimes I think the phone camera is working better than my big camera lately. That might be due to lack of practice. Or it could be that the big camera is getting old and in need of replacement.
I’d invite you out to the Point to watch the sunset but I don’t think there will be much to see. We could, however, walk out to the dock for a bit, check out the trees in the woods, and see what’s going on out there. If the clouds should decide to part enough to give us a good sunset, we can watch from there. Sunset is scheduled for 6:31 PM. It’s relatively warm today, but you might want to wear a light jacket.
Please be safe, be well, be kind, and if you’re in the U.S., VOTE.
A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy: 1,566) Completing a challenge. That always feels good! 1,567) Being able to travel farther on my bicycle than I usually can or do on foot. This has allowed me to explore and see more. 1,568) Feeling stronger. 1,569) Getting my flu shot. Did you get yours? 1,570) An evening yoga practice that helps me work out some of the kinks from all the riding, and soothes and settles.
Walktober reminder: The dates are October 3-18. Take a walk (run, ride, whatever) and post about it sometime during those dates. I will gather it all together and do the round-up post sometime after that (I’m looking at October 26th as a possible date — it depends on whether or not anyone needs more time). The official post is HERE. Leave your link or pingback there. If you should mistakenly leave it elsewhere on my blog, no worries. I can usually find it. However, it does make it easier for me if the links are all in one place. Thank you!