The first leg might not be the hardest but it is the hilliest. Over the last 2 weeks I have cycled approximately 1,000km across British Columbia and into Alberta. It’s been awesome, or as they say in Canada “it’s been arsum.” I have loved every pedal stroke.
I for one am very interested to know what happens to the shape of one’s legs as they pedal thousands of kilometres. This is what my leg looked like in Ruth’s kitchen the week before I left…
Analysis: actually already got a bit of tone around the gastrocnemius. No line of separation at the top. Legs are nice and clean. (I really miss those pjs, they are so comfy.)
This is what my legs looked like this morning…
Analysis: disappointingly similar level of muscle tone. Miscellaneous and unexplained bruise on right calf. Lots of midgy (ie mosquito) bites. Permanent smudge of chain oil. Legs slightly hairy as difficult to shave without slicing off midgy bites.
Apparently there is some ‘trend’ for high school girls in Canada (and presumably elsewhere) to have ‘the thigh gap’ (ie legs so skinny that there is space between your thighs when your knees touch.) This is absolutely ridiculous. I think it’s horrendously sad that young women feel they must contort and damage their bodies in such a way in order to meet an unhealthy model of beauty. Needless to say I do not have the thigh gap. Nor do I want one.
I’ll tell you what is beautiful: thighs made for cycling. 20 inch thighs made of muscle, bone, joint and love. Thighs so strong you can scale a mountain pass. Thighs with deep tan lines from riding for two weeks in the sunshine. Thighs with midgy bites because the critters can bite through Lycra. Thighs that ache from cycling mile after mile and mile. Thighs that will carry you across a continent. Forget false ideals. What is truly beautiful is the ability of the human body to go and keep going.
I love my legs in all of their lumpy-bumpy-bitten-bruised glory because they are strong and will carry me to Winnipeg and beyond. Here’s to the next leg!