I certainly didn’t need my new bike.
My old bike was fine. I could have kept cranking it for a long time. So what’s the deal? Was it just about buying a shiny new toy?
I hope not. I bought this bike for a specific purpose. It’s similar in many ways to the previous version, with one significant upgrade.
My new bike is equipped with an electric-assist system. I’ll tell you more, but first I have to confess that I’ve fussed with this decision for at least a couple of years. Why the delay?
I postponed this decision because because I was afraid!
I was afraid of what people would think. I feared they would think I was just looking for an easier way to ride.
Silly, isn’t it, to live in fear of the opinions of others? We do it, though, more than we want to acknowledge. Even after 32 years in a wheelchair I’m still self-conscious and I spend far too much time wondering what others are thinking.
I was afraid it would actually be easier. I feared losing the workout, the exercise, the feeling of accomplishment. And instead of doing the research, or taking an actual test ride, I lived with what turns out to be an unfounded fear.
So, you’re wondering, why buy an e-bike if I wasn’t seeking an easier ride? Well, it’s complicated.
For me, cycling has been primarily a solitary activity. Mostly that’s a good thing. Cranking my bike is great time with God. He and I have some great conversations on long stretches of trails and country roads.
However, I’ve often wished I could ride more with the FREEDOM TOUR teams and be a part of the comaraderie. The problem – I’m just too slow. It’s not much fun for able-bodied riders to lumber along at 11 or 12 mph.
So I didn’t want the e-assist to make it easier, I wanted it to help me go a little faster. So far, the results are better than I expected.
The system’s designed to “help” in a proportional manner – the harder I crank, the more it assists. If I loaf along exerting little or no effort, the system doesn’t do anything. So rather than decreasing my exercise, the e-assist actually encourages me to work harder. On my first few training rides I’m going faster and getting a better workout.
Crazy how fear works. I let artificial, imagined worry keep me from a choice that might have improved things for me and for my friends.
What’s your fear? What are you imagining that keeps you from following the dream?