In the last few months, I’ve been biking a lot. I even did my first bike race last weekend! And I honestly have to say that I’m pretty much in love with being on a bike. I’m still not running pain free yet, but I’ve decided to focus on biking while I work on my core strength. But I have to be honest – I actually think I love biking more than I ever loved running! Running was always hard for me. I loved it, and I did it all the time to relieve stress and to train for races, but it never got easier. I’d be sweaty, exhausted, and sore after a fast or difficult run. I don’t feel the same way when I bike. I feel like I’m fast and strong after a long ride! And I like that I can explore more of Anchorage then I ever could on two feet. I’ve been able to bike across Anchorage from my own front door, and I’ve even biked to other towns.
I’ve been thinking back on what it was like to start running for the first time, and I’ve been feeling like that all over again with biking. I want to bike all the time! I’m reading articles with biking tips, hanging out with people who want to ride after work, and learning how to change my tires. After a year and a half of no running, it feels so amazing to get back into a new sport that doesn’t hurt my body. I seriously feel like myself again!
It also doesn’t hurt that I’ve been doing some pretty epic rides. On Friday my friends and I rode the entire length of the Bird to Gird Trail. It’s a 14ish mile paved trail that runs from the tiny town of Bird to the cute ski town of Girdwood along Turnagain Arm. It’s literally the most gorgeous car ride I’ve ever been on in my life, and biking it is even better!
We biked up and down some pretty big hills, but the views from the top were worth it! As we biked down into Girdwood, my friend noticed a momma black bear and her cubs on the side of the trail. I was in panic mode, but we were stopped with 4 other girls who were biking the trail and I felt a lot safer with a group. Black bears can usually be scared off with loud noise, so we made a lot of noise as we biked out of there! We finished our night at an amazing restaurant at the base of the ski slopes. I’m seriously hoping we can do that every week!
Now that I’ve found a few friends who like to bike, I know I’ll be able to get out on the trails a few times a week. I’m really looking forward to lots of epic bike rides this summer! But first I have to survive the Gold Nugget Triathlon, which is this weekend. I remember feeling like the bike was the hardest part last year, but this year I think it’s going to be the easiest part for me. I’m excited to see how fast I can bike 12 miles in between my swim and my “run”!
If you couldn’t run, what sport would you try next? What’s the coolest bike ride you’ve ever been on?