Since dropping off my trusty new(ish) mountain bike, herein referred to as "White Lightenin'" (I know . . . just - I know . . .) for a tune-up, I've been using my road bike, Mike the Bike, and my own short stubby legs to get around. I biked a couple times to work (a 16 km round trip, plus another 2.5 km for dropping off/picking up my daughter at daycare), and another couple times I've opted to walk through the river valley (a 12 km round trip, plus the 2.5 km to daycare). Luckily, the weather's been holding out for this - it has been BEEEEAAAAUUUUUTIFUL the past few days! Even when it rains, the rain is short-lived and doesn't cloud the whole day with grey, dismal skies. There has been some intense wind here and there, sometimes gusting up to 40-60 km/hr, but I just try walking those days instead of biking and I barely notice it.
Even on the days that I haven't had to go into the university, I've made efforts to get out and do some biking or walking, just for the sake of getting some exercise and fresh air. In fact, I've made a deal with myself: I've put a moratorium on dieting - I am no longer allowing myself any kind of restriction, calorie counting, or food group limitations whatsoever, so I eat whatever I want whenever I want without handicap - with the understanding that I also exercise at least an hour a day, at least five days a week. This is my way of trying to break my lifelong cyclical habit of dieting and bingeing, then dieting more and bingeing again, etc. etc. If I can manage to break free of the scarcity model - i.e., eating as much as I can whenever I'm not dieting because I know I'm probably going to start severely restricting right away - perhaps I can start having a healthier relationship with food. I'm just over a week into this new experiment - I'll keep you posted how that turns out!!
In the meantime, I'll continue making a concerted effort to exercise, and that means a whole lot of biking and walking whenever I can. Given the beautiful weather we've had lately, that's turning out to be quite a blessing. It's only when I'm outside enjoying the fresh air, taking in the scenery of our beautiful river valley or cruising through thoughtfully-designed established neighbourhoods in central and west Edmonton, that I fully appreciate the beauty therein. The hum of my tires on the pavement, the rhythmic beating of my heart and legs, the cool spring air breezing over my skin. "Beautiful," I say aloud under my breath. The parks, the beautiful old houses, the bright blue skies, the children playing on elaborate play structures in neighbourhood schools: "Just beautiful". It fills me with pleasure, appreciation, and great gratitude. This is living.
I don't get that in my car.