Dear Bike,

After running in those Vibrams for a mile…well…my love for you has deepened. My feet have never been sorer.  I woke the next morning to the usual—baby crying for mama—and sprung to the bathroom like a paraplegic ostrich. It took several lurching steps for me to realize that my feet had not been replaced with pegs. I was grateful not to have to stand to pee.

Not only had I been on that run, but I had also been at the gym that morning doing God knows how many sets of lunges while pretending to be somebody’s personal trainer. I did an equal number of abdominals, rendering me useless from the nipples down on this fine morning. I hobbled up the stairs to the baby who dared ask me for help getting out of the crib (Can you understand now the sacrifices your mother probably made for you?!).

As long as I kept moving I was doing all right. The low-level nausea was the easiest of it—a lot like pregnancy. Early afternoon I made the mistake of sitting cross-legged on the floor while lecturing about sports massage for 30 minutes. It took three students to lift and uncurl my legs from one another.

A week later I learn from my ultramarathon hero that I should have begun by running across a grassy field for a quarter mile in the evil foot gloves. Never again will I look at a fire road without wincing.

Yours forever,

Bettina

Dear Bike,

I think we’ve found the delicate hour between triathlete trainers and berry-dining bears. Rather than a 7:30am ride, we were on the trail shortly after 7. In this way we were able to send the trail runners out ahead to scare off the bears, but remained just slightly ahead of the other bikers. Amazingly enough there were still about three other bikers getting ready in the lot. EVEN AT @!#$ 7am I cannot drop my skirt in the parking lot!?

Although there are a few puddles, the trails are in great condition. Everything is moist, pungent and squishy. The ferns are filling out and the fungus squirts up from the dirt in orange plumes. Jumps are perfectly landed on ground that grips back against the tires while slightly cushioning impact.

Just ask Michael who bruised his ribs and split his elbow open after an endo the other day. Any dryer and he would have stitches and broken ribs instead.

I was careful on the wet bridges—remembering my own early morning dew drama in which my ankle bone was smashed flat.

The runners, who were not a bear after all, happen to mention that they had just seen one up the hill. For the next several miles I talked to the bear, sang to the bear and told the bear how young rabbits are much tastier than I am. (Sorry PETA). I thought about all of the raspberries I’ve eaten from my own garden and realized that I would probably have an infused raspberry smell—and taste—about me.

Anyway, it was good to be with you again – just you and I.

Blissfully yours,

Bettina

Read Part 1 here.