Sleepless? There’s a bike for that.

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When I aimed for bed last night the alarm was set for 5am. Far from my favorite hour of the day, but I suffer from an affliction that some of you might call “being a runner”. Yes, I know, that’s uncommon around these parts. And there’s no known cure. I usually self-medicate with knobby tires and beer. Anyway the plan was to crawl out the door around o-dark thirty for 90 minutes of chasing my tail. However for some reason sleep was hard to come by. After first crashing out around 11pm I awoke to see 12:15, then 1:53, and 2:50. The last straw was at 3:40. Up again. Not really sure why; life has been pretty swell lately. There’s a lot on the horizon for the coming months, but nothing heavy, nothing to fret over. However that looming 5am alarm was now nagging at me. Do I just say fuck it and try to sleep in? Do I run right now? The idea of getting up for that run was almost purely for spite now. But to spite who? Myself? I’d be the one doing the work, tiredly trying to look fast striding over the lake. But I was up and I was becoming frustrated.

So I decided to grab a bike instead. Fortunately I own more bikes than I do running shoes, and there are some trails about 2-3 miles from home that would clear the sleepless fog out of my eyes at 4am. En route I rolled past Dirty’s house and made some obscene gestures that I can only hope disturbed his slumber somehow. I made a quick 8 mile loop through the park, stopping at the amphitheater to admire the moon and my awesomely imperfect situation. Turning for home I somehow figured the sun would be making an appearance soon, but I had forgotten about the extra early departure. It was barely past 5:15, and the horizon wasn’t even faintly blue. I had also forgotten about city rules and police. Exiting the park in the dark, which apparently is closed from 10pm-sunrise, a cruiser pulled up next to me as I rode south over the Mill Ave bridge.

PD:  Hey, whatcha doing out there this early? That park is closed until sunrise you know.

S Jesus:  Sorry Sir, I didn’t think of the hours. I couldn’t sleep and figured I’d get a quick spin in.

PD:  At 5am?

S Jesus:  Couldn’t sleep. Runners are out here this early aren’t they?

PD:  I suppose so. Just keep the posted hours in mind next time. Have a good morning.

It was short but sweet, and exactly the way to correct a potentially shitty morning after a restless night. Actual effort at work today was going to be shot anyway thanks to the lack of sleep, might as well get a nice cruise in before the Man sticks it to you. And fuck it, I can always run tomorrow. So the next time you’re struggling to stay asleep, there’s a bike for that. See if the cops come find you.

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5 Replies to “Sleepless? There’s a bike for that.”

  1. Nice. I’ve never gone night mountain biking and was going to hit Papago tonight. Then my wife was like “let’s go to Four Peaks” and I was like “okay.”

  2. Bike.


    Lather. Rinse. Repeat.

    If that don’t work I figure, “Fuck it. I’ll sleep when I’m dead”.

  3. SJ: I love rolling early morning (say start at 4am) especially during the winter to put the Jetlites to good use and get a mental edge over the rest of the ham and eggers out there. Rolled through Papago many times early with no troubles from the man but probably a good thing they’re out there “keeping the peace” given the questionable characters that likely lurk in the shadows of an urban park. Must say was extremely impressed by your 12 hours in Pap performance. For a man of your advanced “experience” to be able to power through that self-induced pain closet is a bit of an anomaly requiring a unique level of commitment. Not sure how much you are into running but if you ever want to see pure God-given talent I suggest you youtube any of Sir Sebastian Coe’s otherworldly performances back in the late 70’s early 80’s. The 1:41.73 800 meter is a particularly scary one.