I did the dumbest thing on Wednesday and I'm still paying for it.
The kids wanted to go swimming, but I didn't because it was only 50 degrees outside; hardly bathing suit weather. Not wanting to be one of those party-pooper moms, I countered with another suggestion....
"Hey guys, let's ride our bikes to the library and get books!"
The kids thought it was a brilliant idea, and I thought it was pretty magnificent, myself. After all, we could kill two birds with one stone by completing the subjects of P.E. and Reading in the same trip. Not to mention that I needed to gather some more books for the Arizona Unit Study that I'm teaching at co-op this semester.
The only challenge was that the library was relatively far (4 mile trip) on the other side of the lake, and I knew my littlest girl couldn't peddle that distance on her own. It's rough terrain: some dirt roads, lots of hills, and no sidewalks. We hadn't been riding much in the long, cold winter months, but I wasn't about to let that stop me.
Not one to shirk from a challenge, I chose to adapt and overcome. In my infinite wisdom, I devised a plan to ride my husband's mountain bike with the old baby bike-seat attached to the back. I put a helmet on my six year old, maneuvered her into the little seat with her legs dangling off the sides, and had a little test drive to see if the whole contraption was sea-worthy. We had a 1/2" clearance from the seat to the back tire, so we were good to go. I gathered up the troops, bikes, helmets, and backpacks.
"Tally-Ho". We were on our way!
Although I looked ridiculous, my girl thought it was the coolest ride EVER. At some point in my motherhood, I lost all semblance of pride. It was no longer shameful to be rollin' down the dirt road with a kid in a princess helmet chillin' in the baby seat on the back of my bike. Both of us were cracking up the whole way there because it was so funny. I felt like a rickshaw cart driver in China.
My girl would chant "Go mama, go!" up the big hills. I was definitely feeling the burn in my legs. At the time I remember thinking that people in those spinning classes at the gym should just adapt my method of exercise. After all, if Luke Skywalker did his training with Yoda on his back, then peddling with a six year old behind me had to be on par with the superior Jedi- Knight training methods.
As my little clan of cyclists rode down the road, I quickly waved to one of my good friends as she drove by. When she didn't acknowledge us, I knew that we had achieved Ultra-Nerd status. Either that or she was texting someone and didn't see us.
After we arrived home safely, my legs felt a little wobbly and noodle-like, but I was no worse for the wear. In fact, I thought about doing it again in a day or two because it was a great change of pace from my regular jogging routine.
6:00pm- My legs felt a little fatigued.
8:00pm- I walked a little stiffly to kiss the kids goodnight.
11:00pm- Jolted awake by EXCRUCIATING pain in my legs.
11:03pm- Tossing and turning from the intense cramping in my lower limbs.
11:05pm- I'm convinced my thighs are bleeding internally.
11:07pm- My quadriceps feel as though they've been put through a meat grinder....twice.
11:08pm- My hamstrings are burning with the flames of hell.
11:09pm- I cannot tolerate the cramping any longer. I must take action.
11:10pm- I'm thinking I need to get up and eat a banana for the potassium, but then remember that the bananas are black and ready for banana bread. I don't eat black bananas. Back to square one.
11:11pm- I decided to hobble to the bathroom and rummage through the cabinet looking for the Icy-Hot muscle cream. I apply it liberally to my legs.
11:13pm- I'm back in bed and my legs still feel excruciatingly painful, but now they are freezing cold too...or burning hot...I can't decide which sensation I'm feeling. All I know is that it has added insult to injury. The Icy-Hot does nothing to soothe the pain.
11:15pm- Crawl back out of bed so I don't wake up my husband while I'm moaning in intense agony.
11:16pm- Rummage back through the bathroom cabinet to retrieve two Aleve for the pain. I head to the hall closet to grab the heating pad and a blanket and limp to the couch like an invalid.
11:17-12:05am- Suffer in silence on the couch with a heating pad, waiting for the Aleve to kick in.
6:48am- I'm awakened by my husband who wonders why on earth I'm sleeping on the couch.
6:49am- I relive the torturous middle-of-the-night crisis for my husband who can't stop laughing at my misfortune.
6:52am- Still under the influence of Aleve, I'm feeling great and decide that yesterday might have been the best work-out I've ever had.
12:30pm- Pain medication wears off, and I decide that yesterday may have been the worst work-out I've ever had.
1:15pm- I make a vow NEVER to do anything stupid like that again!
48 hours have passed from my moment of temporary insanity, and I've decided that plain old jogging isn't such a bad gig after all. Why switch things up? Perhaps I'll get on a bike again one day, but not while toting a six year old...unless I'm training for the Iron Man Triatholon...or to be a Jedi Knight...neither of which will be any time soon....if ever.
Still Suffering in Silence,