Embracing the Highs and Lows of Cycling: From Candyland to the Valley of Darkness

a senior cyclist riding through candyland
Cycling can be an incredibly rewarding and enjoyable form of exercise. There are days when it feels like you are riding through Candyland, with the wind in your hair and the sun on your face. These are the days when everything feels effortless, and the miles just seem to fly by. It's easy to get caught up in the euphoria of these rides and forget about everything else.

However, it's important to remember that cycling, like life, has its ups and downs. The very next day, you may find yourself struggling through a ride that feels like a journey through the Valley of Darkness. Your legs may feel heavy, the wind may be against you, and every hill may seem insurmountable.

cyclist riding through valley of darkness
It's on these days, when cycling feels like a chore, that it's important to remember the joy and sense of accomplishment that you felt on your last ride. It's easy to get discouraged and give up, but perseverance is key to achieving your goals. Embrace the challenge, push through the pain, and remind yourself that every pedal stroke is bringing you closer to your destination.

One way to make sure that you don't get discouraged on tough days is to set realistic goals for yourself. If you're just starting out, don't try to ride 50 miles on your first day. Instead, start with a shorter ride and gradually increase your distance as your fitness improves. Set yourself small goals along the way, such as riding a little further or a little faster each week.


Another way to stay motivated is to vary your routes. If you always ride the same roads, you may get bored and lose motivation. Mix it up and explore new routes. You may discover hidden gems that you never knew existed.

Finally, remember that cycling is supposed to be fun. Don't take it too seriously, and don't be too hard on yourself if you have a bad day. Every cyclist has been there. Learn from your mistakes, but don't dwell on them.

Cycling can be a wonderful form of exercise that brings joy and a sense of accomplishment. Embrace those effortless, Candyland rides, but also be prepared for the Valley of Darkness. With perseverance, realistic goals, varied routes, and a sense of fun, you can overcome any challenge that comes your way.

I hope you liked this post enough to check out more of my blog. Here is my next post:  Caffeine for Cyclists Riding a Century: The Good and the Bad

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