Operation: MTB relocation
I didn’t want to make the same mistake I did when I joined my first duathlon: On a whim, I signed up even though it’s been almost a year since I rode, and I only trained indoors for a week.
In an attempt to somehow do better on my second (but first sprint), I decided to bring the MTB to Makati for more riding practice. Hence, Sunday was supposed to be MTB transport day. And since it’s no off-road race, I thought of borrowing my dad’s, which was more light-weight than the hardtail one.
But getting a bike to Makati wasn’t a breeze, as my folks would probably do everything to prevent me from taking my calorie-burning activities outside the gym. Here’s how I got my way, albeit some mini conflicts (which I think and hope could be resolved) and why doing this duathlon is worth all the trouble.
The mystery of the fluid brakes
For the nth time last Friday, I’ve sent out my “press release” that I’ll be borrowing my dad’s MTB for the sprint duathlon. Two hours before reaching home, however, my mom told me the MTB’s fluid brakes needed repair.
Over the phone:
“Sira ‘yung brakes, eh,” my dad echoed.
“Oh, ipapa-repair ko,” I offered.
He went on that he tried having the fluid brake checked at Sabak and other bike shops, but the “part” couldn’t be replaced.
“Bike King? The one in Alabang? In BHS?” I asked.
Oh ok, I thought. That’s kinda weird. The fluid brakes acting up and no one could have it fixed?! Isn’t that a DIY thing?
For some reason, I thought my father was just making excuses for me to pass. But then again, I may be wrong—these fluid brakes could really be sensitive (I remember him using the hardtail MTB during one of his Nuvali rides).
So when I got home, I checked on the full-suspension MTB myself. I was surprised to find it tied and locked. That’s odd. This tells me my brewing theory of no-duathlon-for-Tracy is right.
I slowly pushed the MTB forward and hit the brakes; it’s working. I pulled it backwards, hit the brakes, and both seemed to be working. But then again, I could be mistaken because I’m no bike expert.
So to find out if my theory was right, I approached my dad, and told him nonchalantly that I checked on the MTB and “hindi naman sira ‘yung fluid brakes, eh.”
“It is,” he said in a similar, casual tone.
Instincts: I smell something fishy…
For some reason, I wasn’t convinced. I’m no MTB expert; I’m no fortune teller nor mind-reader; but I just felt like my parents were ganging up on me. I never trusted my instincts, but this weekend proved me that I should sometimes pay attention to that tiny, doubting voice inside me.
Saturday night, and we were talking about a totally different thing when my father blurted out “The one who lies…” and his voice trailed off.
“So tell me, are the brakes really busted?”
My dad looked at my mom. And the truth was out.
Full-suspension MTB is in top condition. All they wanted was for me to stop toasting myself under the sun.
You’re beginning to look like a boy, yaddi yaddi yadda.
Look at you, you’re getting darker and darker, blah blah blah.
After their monologue, I simply said that I use sunscreen and whitening lotion, which apparently aren’t doing their promised magic.
Sunday came and I loaded the hardtail bike onto the MPUV. That would end the debate, I thought.
When we got to Makati, my father voiced out his fears of me losing the bike and the dangers of sharing the road with vehicles. The fear, of course, rubbed in on me.
Worth all the trouble
The bike, they’ve always known, was my first love. When my brother and I were kids, we quarreled because I attempted to ride his BMX. And because back then I didn’t know how to ride yet, I fell and sustained wounds. I thought that was the first and last of my biking attempt. But on my next birthday, I got a red bike with training wheels.
And when I finally learned how to bike, my brother and I would ride and race together—one of my fondest childhood memories, aligned with playing in the garden and backyard, playing with our dogs and afternoon summer nap time that we kids hated (but now would love to get some). That was, until we both outgrew our bikes.
Now who wouldn’t fall in love again with biking and dare go through all the trouble if it reminds you of your carefree and fun childhood, of chasing butterflies and family bonding? Of course the recent mini conflict made me feel bad. But the duathlon excitement and anxiety are much more powerful, and I don’t want to worry about family issues that can be resolved by proving that there’s nothing to fear.
For two nights now, I’ve taken the bike for a ride for a total of 33km. The MTB is locked safe and sound, and I’ve been riding it with impeccable balance (Ang yabang! Well, I hope and I should! :-P).
So I guess that settles it: Dump the doubts; forget the fears. Keep riding and running—look back at fond memories of the past, but stay on the present and relish the joy of today. And enjoy the best of both worlds! 🙂