At any rate, I accidentally biked twenty miles today (that is not a typo). I'd only planned on doing thirteen, but then I ran into a problem. Each morning as I haul my bike out of the truck, I decide just how many miles I'm going to bike that day. My number depends on how much time I have, and whether I feel full of energy or if I feel every single one of my forty plus years. (Never mind how many plus.) The point is to make my decision, and then stick to it until I accomplish my goal. I freely admit that, in the past, I often would "try" to do a certain amount of exercise, but then wimp out long before reaching my goal. Hence the reason I need to lose so much weight. (I'm sure it has nothing to do with the amount of sweets I consume.)
This time around, I've determined that I can add miles after I start biking, but I can never do less than the amount I set in my head. This morning I set out with the number 13 in mind. I try to double up on certain sections of the trail (re: parts where it's fairly level) in order to get in my set number. Today I was going to do a loop between mile markers 11 and 12, so that I could add a total of two miles to that stretch of the trail.
I was biking along, looking for the mile marker when I happened to pass a Very Buff Guy jogging in my direction. Very Buff Guy was also very shirtless. I did not gawk. I took a moment to very briefly appreciate God's creation as I passed, and then went back to looking for the mile marker.
Unfortunately, the mile marker came up right after I passed Very Buff Guy. If I turned around here, would it look like I was trying to follow him? Worse yet, I'd eventually have to pass him again since even someone like me on a bike tends to go faster than someone jogging. I did NOT want Very Buff Guy to think I was angling for him to give me attention. It's not just that I wasn't interested, but as I mentioned, I'm not very coordinated. I enjoy riding, but it's not necessarily a pretty sight. Plus, I was sweating profusely and worried about anyone having to be downwind of me for very long.
So in the interest of not giving the wrong message, I continued in the same direction, determined to make up those two miles somewhere else. By the time I got back to the trailhead, I still had 1.5 miles to go in order to make my goal for the day. As I turned around and headed back to the next mile marker, I did some math in my head. Doing one more mile out and back would give me 13-1/2 miles. That was over my goal, but a mile and a half short of the fifteen miles I did on Tuesday. I quickly decided to ride two more miles and then turn around, so that I'd do a little better than I did on Tuesday.
I should have realized all that math would catch up with me. I was getting tired, and really hoping the next mile marker was around the corner when I looked up and realized Very Buff Guy had turned around and was once again jogging toward me.
Just beyond him was the mile marker I was looking for as my turning point. What were the odds?!? I reluctantly biked on past the marker. After all, I reasoned, I was only another mile from the point where I turned away from the busy street. Why not add another two miles to my total?
I was almost at my turning point when I realized I was coming up behind another Very Buff Shirtless Guy.
Are you kidding me?!?
The next mile marker was just beyond him, and I would have to turn around almost immediately after passing him. Once again I risked sending the wrong message (or just embarrassing myself by falling off my bike as I made the turn.) I slowed down, thinking I'd let him get past the mile marker, but after awhile it just looked like I was tailing him. Eventually, I turned a little short of my goal and headed back down the trail.
Cutting off that tenth of a mile bothered me, so I biked a little past the trailhead again, just to make sure I made up for it. Then I crossed the street to my truck, loaded the bike and headed home. As I congratulated myself on what I had accomplished that day--not embarrassing myself ranked almost as high as the amount of miles I'd done--I realized that once again my math had been faulty. I was trying to make up time, but since I can't add correctly, I'd actually gone 20.5 miles before I was done.
I'd be proud of myself, except for the fact that I can hardly move. Those extra miles really did me in.
Stupid Buff Guys!