I’m a PC. No, I’m a MAC… no, wait…

What the heck am I talking about?

Well, let me tell ya…

Determined not to let all of the training from the past year go to waste if I can help it, I’ve been doing my best to keep it up as best I can as the “Exercising Hermit…”

The long and the short of it is, that as of last night, for the first time in my adult life, I was hit with a realization that will make Rick smile, I’m sure…

Yes, for the first time, I found that I have been enjoying biking more than running! Yikes!

I’ve been able to do some great rides lately, and my biking fitness is as good or better than it has ever been. I can actually feel the improvement, and it’s certainly easier on the ole’ carcass than running…

For example, yesterday, I did the ride from Sandpoint up to the Schweitzer Ski area, a distance of 9 straight uphill miles, but it’s on a road, which I’m really enjoying. Tour de France, here I come! (Except they could do it in 60 minutes or less, so maybe “Tour de Athol” is going to be more my speed!) It took me 80 minutes exactly, but the way down? Yee hah! 19:56, reaching a speed of 42 mph, which on a mountain bike feels pretty quick, I must say. Couple that with my “Two Peaks” ride last week, and I’d have to say that yes, now I’m a biker, even if only a neophyte.

Then today, as fate would have it, I went to Farragut, and had one of the best, most difficult, beautiful and enjoyable runs of my life, so once again, I’m a PC… or maybe it’s a draw, and I’m both. Either way, I actually feel as if I’m in my best shape in 20 years… I finally made it to the “176” barrier for 2 days in a row, and today, broke my time running to the top of the mountain by almost 4 minutes. The trekking poles worked amazingly yet again. I was able to run all the way from High Point trailhead to the Bernard Peak viewpoint and back, down to Buttonhook, up Big Nasty, and then down Squirrel cache back to the trailhead in under 1:10… it was the best I’ve felt running in months.

For sure, if I only have an hour to workout, nothing makes me feel like I’ve accomplished as much as running, especially up big hills, but biking has been a blast!

As a parting thought, I love this time of year when the colors are changing, and I hope everyone else is managing to keep your “warrior hearts” going, and are appreciating the cooler fall weather as I am. I hope you’ve had the chance to maybe stretch your limits a bit… One of the best measures I’ve found is to go on a run or a bike I’ve done often, though perhaps not for a while, and then try it again with the same effort, and see how I do compared to before, both in terms of time, how I feel, and most importantly, how fast can I recover and keep going.

Having the “post race blues?” Getting caught up in the new season “rut?” I encourage all of you to remember where we were a year ago, and then recall how much of yourselves you put into the past year, and the lifestyle changes we all made… honor yourselves and your new health and steal those few moments you need to get out and keep it going. Don’t fall back… PFM: Perpetual Forward Motion!

Good Training to all!

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