On Cycling

2018 for me was the year of cycling. I biked over 1,000 miles outdoors. The earliest highlight in the season was Ride for Heart, an annual charity ride on a stretch of Don Valley Parkway and a part of Gardiner Expressway.

Not having climbed much, I was a little worried going into the ride. To my surprise, the climbs over the long distance were manageable, although I often found myself grinding on the lowest gear possible whenever I approached the hills.

Near the end of 75km ride, I was getting exhausted and my legs were getting numb. Just as I was about to pass the very last turning point only with a few kilometres to go, I hit a narrow pothole and got my first flat tire, which I managed to fix after struggling for a few minutes while a few concerned cyclists passed by asking if I was in need of any help.

Just as I started pedalling again, I heard a low hiss that I had feared, which meant that I accidentally ripped the only spare inner tube while putting it on. I accepted my fate and decided to walk the next couple of kilometres. If you have ever tried a pair of cycling shoes with cleats, you will know that the shoes are very hard to walk in.

After I waved on a few concerned cyclists, a very kind man about my age got off his bike and offered to replace the inner tube while I stood idly by. Thanks to him, I was able to complete my ride with my head held high.

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