It’s finally here. Time for play upon the water. Time for backyard pursuits, like gardening and grilling. It’s also time for my biannual dressing down at the hands of various physicians for my sorry physical state.
Blood sugar at astronomical levels. Triglycerides are off the el chart-oh. Bad cholesterol – I could sell it by the pound. Good cholesterol – not an ounce to be found in my blood stream.
Add into the sauce the death of two very close friends and one Pop, mix well, and hold over a glowing fire and you get a semi-humble bitterman feeling the hell out of his own mortality.
“If there was an exceptionally beautiful girl at my kitchen table, sans clothes, and shoving a fat slice of deep dish pizza in her cherubic face right now, I’d probably be staring at the pizza”, said Ed a couple of nights ago via email. I believe my super bud in Milwaukee summed it up nicely. Seems he is facing the same myriad of health issues as well.
So, I have made a pact with myself. Thirty pounds by the end of summer. Don’t care how, don’t care why. Thirty pounds. It’s my new mantra. Who needs a New Year to get back on track. Not me, sez me.
I used to ride bikes. Everywhere. Forty mile loops on a daily basis were not uncommon even into my mid thirties. After two back surgeries and numerous other orthopedic problems, it was the one form of physical activity that did not stress my back and knees. As a result, I developed a huge bike habit. But once I landed upon the Worst Coast, I laid it aside and left the old Cannondale to decompose silently in a corner of my garage until it finally, quietly disappeared for pennies on the dollar at a garage sale. Maybe I was freaked at seeing a real hill for the first time. I’ll plead chasing the almighty dollar in this here rat race. Either way, a bad decision on my part.
I got froggy and purchased one of these brand new. The credit card tab has long since been paid and still, it languishes away in my garage for several months now. I’ve tried to ride it. Somehow saddle sore seemed a righteous excuse. Long gone are the days of ripping off 130 miles a week on my hard leather San Marco. So I went and saw Bob and Chandler at my local shop for a set of wide platform pedals and a semi comfortable seat and started turning the cranks.
I’ve been riding it to work. I got a set of panniers and have been riding it to the shops. I’ve been riding it just to ride it, which these days is unusual. It’s all about making the time and forming the habit. I’ll never be back at the level I was when I was 25, but thirty pounds is the goal.
I should have told Ed to smack the bird with a shovel and hold on to the pie. I’d probably pedal to Milwaukee for a slice of his Chicago deep dish at this point.