The Cowardly Cyclist

If fear burns calories, then I've just had a great workout. My heart was certainly racing. It was my first time mountain biking. I've logged plenty of road miles, but never turned a pedal on a dirt trail before. But here we are in Costa Rica, with trails right outside our door and amazing views out over the Pacifist Ocean. Despite a sliver of trepidation, I was up for the challenge.

Molly starting the mountain bike trail

At first the rocks and uneven terrain were unnerving. And the rapid shift between sudden ups and downs took getting used to. But I finally got the hang of grinding uphill in my granny gear and rounding sharp turns – carefully. I even managed to hold my fear of heights at bay while traversing narrow trails carved into the hillside. As long as it was gently rolling or uphill, I was able to hang in there. I took a couple of spills and drew blood, but it wasn't even doing anything difficult. I just slipped in soft dirt. I really thought I was conquering this thing.

Then we reached the ridge line and headed downhill. Even when I'm road biking, I dislike gathering speed and tend to ride my brakes on the way down. I should have foreseen the consequences. All the challenges of the dirt trail suddenly intensified as the pitch grew steeper. Braking wasn't such a great idea, and I knew I should just let the bike roll. But I was terrified. Not knowing what was around the next corner only intensified my fear. That bit didn't go so well.

Rich mountain biking
Molly mountain biking

Don't let the smile fool you. I was just glad to stand still for a spell. I also took the opportunity to enjoy the view, as I certainly couldn't take my eyes off the trail for long enough to take in the vista.

Actually, the final piece of the trail leveled out and I could honestly say I enjoyed that bit. I'm just not cut out for risky, speed induced drama. All the elements that attract thrill seeking mountain bikers are the same things that put me off. I like the milder terrain that is more like, well, road biking.

I admit it. I'm a conservative kind of gal. Even a bit cowardly.

 

2 thoughts on “The Cowardly Cyclist

  1. Moltex,

    I would also be a cowardly cyclist for mountain biking. A bunch of years ago they put a video on the wall at a refresher from the helmet cam of a ski patrol frend as he rode down the trails at Sugarbush in a group. I KNEW I would never try it. How did Rich like it?

    Glad you survived to tell the tale.

    ~ Betsy

    On Fri, Apr 21, 2017 at 12:03 PM, Superior Footprints wrote:

    > Molly posted: “If fear burns calories, then I’ve just had a great workout. > My heart was certainly racing. It was my first time mountain biking. I’ve > logged plenty of road miles, but never turned a pedal on a dirt trail > before. But here we are in Costa Rica” >

    • Rich is hanging in there, but very conservatively. He walks the steep uphills and downhills. Funnily enough, we set out together this morning, Rich biking and me running the trails. He pulled away quickly, but I caught him and mostly stayed ahead! The tortoise and the hare.

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