|Professional Tweaks, Tips & Reviews By "AJ" Picarello
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I was inspired to venture into uncharted waters after reading an article in Bikehouse magazine. The story was about a fellow who felt he was addicted to cycling and would make an attempt to abstain for thirty days. Needless to say, kicking an addiction is brutal for anyone and he was beaten after only eleven days. Inspired and just a bit curious, I also decided to test my will and abstain for as long as possible from mountain biking.
I realized how addicted I was after just day one with no riding. I new this personal challenge would be difficult, but after a few days I would be amazed if I could last much more than a week. I new my morning rides would be most difficult to conquer. My mornings are very surreal and I cherish the tranquility. I think without my morning ride, I could go insane. I cowboyed up and conquered them like a man. I simply kept myself busy and left no room for downtime. I did not read magazines or venture into the basement where my quiver lies.
I was becoming very proud of my accomplishment, but could tell no one about it, not even my wife. I think she was a bit suspicious that something was going on with me. More down time on the home front equaled more attention she was going to get, whether she wanted it or not.
I was accomplishing tons around the house! Home repairs, put off for years, were getting done by the second. The pooch was groomed, the hermit crab fed and the little ones teeth brushed. Into my second week, I had to shift into second. I had to dispose of any videos/ DVD’s as they were calling me. This was a very difficult move on my part as any addict knows how we cherish our movies.
My bike shop web site was beginning to flourish once again, as I entered data like systems technician from Bangalore. The pain in the grundle region ached more and more. I literally “itched” to ride, the type of itch too deep to scratch. Riding was a part of me and my body was rejecting my new found mission. What scared me most was that I knew I could go the thirty days! I felt I could stop completely, but at what expense?
I noticed my injuries were healing and I was becoming very sensitive. My body, specifically the derrières and callused hands were beginning to go soft. I would yelp at the slightest touch and was losing my ability to control my grip on things. For this one reason, I lasted three weeks and one day.
My first day back with my monkey was not a day of disgrace. It was a day of revelation. I now understand that my so called “addiction” is not something to be ashamed of. Riding is mandatory; it’s just something I have to do. Without riding, I will loose control of myself and become a person I don’t know. Abstaining is not natural and all of my senses screamed this to me.
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