During mile sixty-two of a 120-mile bike ride last Sunday, my legs felt like stale Wheat Thins.
Throughout the 90’s, I used to live for the moment when I saw my mom put a fresh box of Wheat Thins in our pantry, because seconds later, while in a hangry exercise induced stupor from whatever sport was in season, (soccer, basketball, cross-country, track, etc.,) I would grab a sharp pair of scissors, peel back the top, clip the plastic bag inside, instantly overwhelmed by the sweet smell of processed ingredients wafting in the air, and stack between six to eight of the delicious square crackers between my thumb and forefinger and shove them into my mouth in one giant, glorious bite that provided a quick shot of empty calories to satiate my burning teenage belly until dinner, or at least for the next ten minutes.
Sadly, sometimes that once fresh box of Wheat Thins sat too long in between the uneven pantry skyline of Honey Nut Cheerios and Grape Nuts cereal boxes, nearly forgotten, until the next moment I swept into the kitchen possessed with unhinged hunger.
Without hesitation my eyes narrowed on the lonely box of Wheat Thins huddled back in the corner on the top shelf, I grabbed it in a flash, and dove my hand deep down to the bottom to retrieve whatever shattered morsels were left and gobbled them up immediately. Yes, even in their advanced, chewy, stale state nothing satisfied me quite like Wheat Thins.
I craved their sweet and savory combination any way I could get them, fresh or stale; they were the caloric failsafe of my youth.
That is why while burrowing hard into a relentless headwind during my ride on Sunday, barely half-way through, and feeling fatigue that had mounted from stacked days of training, it hit me, my legs felt like stale Wheat Thins.
My legs were not fresh, but I knew they would power me through every remaining mile.
And then run.
My legs really wanted to run.
However, I know these long, tiring, meandering, and gorgeous rides are a necessary piece of my Ironman puzzle. The more I ride in training, the better I’ll feel on race day.
Of course, some rides feel better than others, but just like a satisfying handful of stale Wheat Thins, I know I can count on my legs to get me through every single one of them.
In related news, it turns out Red Bull really does give you wings.:)
The music choice this week is the new single from the Jonas Brothers, Cool. The song AND video are both a delight, and I guarantee will put a smile on your face.:)