Something else happened on Day Two of the Zoo 2 Zoo ride. In my early morning rush to get ready, I lost my Garmin. At first I was distraught, not so much at the thought of having to cough up $300 for a new one. More that this was the biggest day of the whole thing and here I was at the start in Lithgow with no GPS to record it for posterity. Woe was me. Or so I thought.
I did manage to record some of the day’s riding through my phone…until its battery died about 15km north west of Bathurst. That said, even before it died my phone was tucked snuggly in my back jersey pocket so I had no way of knowing my speed or cadence or gradients or heart rate in any case. After the battery gave up the ghost, for the final 85km I had nothing at all.
Apart from racing on the track during winter (where I was too lazy to set it up on my track bike) this is the first time I’d ridden ‘technologically nude’ in a very long time. And I liked it. Suddenly I was forced to listen to my body – really listen – and not rely on numbers and thresholds being spat out on a LCD screen on my stem to measure my efforts. As it turns out, I survived the day just fine. In fact, in many ways I rode more strongly than ever.
This story has a double happy ending too. For at the end of Day Two I found my Garmin buried amongst energy gels and sweaty gloves in my overnight bag in Molong. Question is, will I keep using it?
(Answer: yes. But I certainly won’t fret should I ever forget it again).