Why I’m not a professional cyclist:)

I’m not really a fast cyclist. For all that I like to talk about working hard on my bike, it doesn’t actually mean, objectively speaking, that I’m all that speedy.

But that being said, I do sometimes like the feeling of flying. Last night, with too much pent-up energy, I found myself pounding it hard down an eerily empty Springwater Corridor. And then in totally un-stasialike fashion, I also found myself cranking up and down and up and down and up and down the also eerily quiet Riverview Cemetery.  Un-stasialike fashion, I say, because I’m not really into going up and down things over and over–I’d rather find another hill and see something new–but for whatever reason last night it seemed appealing.

And it did feel so good to crank it like hell up the hill and zoom back down, even if, like I said, it probably wasn’t objectively all that fast. It felt fast to me, and that’s what I was going for. (Though promise me you won’t do the zoom thing when there are people around in the cemetery).

It also kind of gave me a bigger appreciation for those stalwart few (or many?) of you who actually do stuff like this on a normal basis for training. Those of you who actually motivate to go up and down ad nauseum because you’re keeping track of things like heart rate and speed and cadence and what-have-you–you guys have my respect. I liked doing it yesterday when I was looking to burn off a whole bunch of pent-up energy, but I really don’t know that I could be motivated to do it all the time, just with the tenuous belief that it’s making me a better cyclist.

Though I could see that it would be good for you, I’m not sure I have the heart for training in the conventional sense of the term. My “training” is to ride my bike as much as I possibly can, because I like it, and to seek out hills, also because I like them. This is probably why I’m not the speediest speedster in the west: I’m only doing what I like–which does involve pushing myself because I like the feeling of having met a challenge, but it’s definitely not the strategic and plotted pushing of formal training. Those of you who can do that are kind of amazing.


  1. That’s so interesting that you rode your bike in Riverview Cemetery because just a couple weeks ago, I discovered that I had a distant relative buried there. At the time I thought, “That looks like the sort of place Stasia would enjoy, maybe I should tell her” but I didn’t because he’s a realllly distant relative. Anyway, sounds like a fun time.

    • Sarah!! You should definitely tell me that kind of thing so I can go on a scavenger hunt for reeeeeally distant relatives to my distant (distance-wise, I mean;) relatives:) heh. Next time you guys are here we should go to Riverview. As weird as it may be to go to cemeteries, I think it’s one of the most beautiful and peaceful places in Portland.

  2. Sounds good. Actually I don’t think it’s weird to go to cemeteries. They’re kind of like parks, but more quiet.

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