Mountain Biking

Get a bicycle.  You will not regret it if you live.
~ Mark Twain

I have talked a lot since the beginning of the year about how I am working hard to get into shape – not skinnier, or losing weight, but physically fit.  I am having a really hard time getting back into running like I was 7 or so years ago.  After injuring my knee and not being able to do any physical exercise for months, I lost all motivation for running.  I have been running off and on this winter and spring, but nothing consistent.  I would love to be back to the point that if someone called me up and said they wanted to go for a run, I could go without being afraid I would die of oxygen deprivation first.

Another thing that has been challenging is finding an exercise that I love as much as running, but that might be a bit easier to get back into.  I golf at least twice a week, but that’s not really very hard exercise – especially when you use a cart like I do.  I love to ride my bike, but I hate to ride on the regular roads because they get so boring and the view is always the same.

Enter my new adventure . . . trail riding on my mountain bike!  I know this is not a new sport, and I know there are people way way better than me, but I absolutely love it!  The fact that I can combine so many of the things I love – being outdoors, exercise, and adventure – into a great form of exercise is just a huge plus!

Sunday I took my bike to one of the mountains above La Grande and rode some of the roads/trails up there.  I had a great time, and I really didn’t think I went very far until I clocked my distance with the pick-up.  Originally, I thought I had ridden about 8 miles, but I forgot that I rode a quick little spur road that was about a mile long.  All in all, I rode about 10 miles, and it felt great!  My legs felt like jello, my arms were sore, and I definitely need a new bike seat before I do much more bouncy riding like that.

I stopped and took a few pictures with my phone at a couple different places because it was such a gorgeous day.  Oh who am I kidding?  I stopped to take the pictures because I thought I was going to die!  🙂  Anyway, the panoramic picture above is from one spot on top.  I took several (six, I think) pictures and stitched them together to make the panoramic.


I guess the moral of all this, for me, would be to try something new, you never know what you’re missing out on if you don’t try new things.

Bicycling is the nearest approximation I know to the flight of birds.  The airplane simply carries a man on its back like an obedient Pegasus; it gives him no wings of his own.
~ Louis J. Helle, Jr.