The Buddy System

Shortly after I posted this morning – and after agonizing about whether I should do housework, lawn work, or just go for a bike ride already – I headed out on a bike ride with my oldest son. We planned to do a 13-mile out-and-back, pumped up our tires, filled our water bottles, and headed out. We were only gone about a half-hour, as we ultimately decided to make a 5-mile errands-running loop.

I commented to my husband that while it wasn’t what I wanted to do, any bike ride is better than no bike ride. To which he responded:

There’s nothing stopping you from going out again right now. Why don’t you just ride by yourself?”



I realize I am asking too much of my oldest son. He’s a fun dude to ride with and he can do up to 26 miles with me as long as it’s relatively flat, maybe a few smaller hills. I always ride behind him and guide his route verbally. But he’s also my kid and I shouldn’t expect him to be my Cycle Buddy.

Which is what I want.


But why do you need a buddy?

Because it’s more fun. You have someone to talk to.

Because it’s someone to keep you honest. And is your support when you want to quit.

Because there aren’t many bike paths our here so it’s someone who will call for help if G-d forbid anything were to happen on the ride.


So why don’t you go to the bike paths?

Because I haven’t adjusted my mindset yet to understand Pennsylvania is not Colorado. There are bike paths and they are about a half-hour away from me. And I need to just come to terms with this and go to the bike paths to ride.

I’m a mom and that drives some of my decisions. At the end of the day, I need to be there for my kids – and that includes being safe when I do go out. Ergo – the Buddy System means I need a buddy when I go out riding.

But not really, right? I used to ride by myself in Colorado too … but on bike paths. And maybe it’s just that I’m not quite comfortable yet with the roads out here – I want to know where I’m going, what parts of town I might end up in, and how to get back home. Or at least guide someone to my location if I need to be picked up.


So I found a group ride tomorrow afternoon that I will attend if the weather holds out. I know it’s not supposed to (50s and raining) … and even if it doesn’t I will put it on my schedule for the following Sunday afternoon. It will feel good to get out with people in my ability bracket.

Wish me luck.

Author: Laura

wife. mother. kick-ass girl. all mountain, all road adventurer by bike.

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