Carpe Diem, The Series: Weather Permitting

cycling in the rain

Paul Stevens

Carpe Diem (but in a relaxed sort of way)


I’m sitting in the house on a Saturday looking out at what is a cool and miserably wet day.  My fellow Manditos (the bike riding group I pedal with here in Sarnia) had some preliminary thoughts about trying to get ourselves out on the current weekend but of course that would be totally weather dependent. 

With conditions as they are, we will have to wait for a few more days for sure.  Well, we can take comfort in the fact that it at least is not snowing as that would not be outside of the realm of possibilities even at this part of the early spring season.

What to do, what to do? 

Days like this provide no opportunity to much other than to knock off a few items from the ‘honey do’ list so it was a good time to move the renovations on our spare room project a little further along to completion.  I have installed new crown moulding which I think looks pretty good and I have repaired the little cracks and dings in the walls and ceiling that will happen in a house that is coming up to its centennial celebration.   The room is now ready for paint and it is then done.  No time for kicking back however as the next project beckons and that will involve finishing the deck I started last fall but had to interrupt when I was on the losing end of my bicycle/pick-up truck collision.

Related Article: Crunch Time!

Ending Things On A High Note

Hockey season is down to one last pick-up game before I hang up the skates until next fall.  The ‘Pylons’ (recall that is not the real name of our team – we just play that way) finished up our season of league play a couple of weeks ago and we did it in style – we actually won the final game by an impressive margin.  I think the score was about 9-3 and the reason I say that I ‘think’ that was the score is because there is a mercy rule in the league that stops showing the goals on the scoreboard after a team chalks up seven goals.  No need to rub it in after that point.  I say this with some authority as the Pylons have been on the receiving beneficiaries of that rule many times. 

Lighting the goal lamp somewhere around nine times pushed our season total in goals to something that almost encroached on respectability, almost being the operative word. The Pylons remain very much a work in process, but what the heck, we’ll take it and relish the accomplishment all summer.  Given the very uncharacteristic offensive outpouring, I am a bit surprised we weren’t asked for urine samples after the game to make sure we weren’t ‘juicing’!  This is not unlike the game of golf where that one decent shot per round makes you think that there is untapped, latent ability which gives you optimism, misplaced as it may be, to get back out there and try it again.

Sitting around the dressing room after the game and having the customary post-game refreshment, (aka beer), you would have thought that we had just won the Stanley Cup.  The mood was downright jovial but who doesn’t like to end things on a high note?  I have a nagging suspicion that we will be brought back to reality plenty of times next season.

Music For Motivation?

Until the weather becomes more predictable and favourable and with hockey season all but done, this may dictate some additional time in the gym before things get rolling, no pun intended. If you like to wear headphones when you are doing a workout, what type of music do you prefer?  (As a public safety note, I trust that you never wear your headphones should you be doing outdoor roadwork on your bike or on your feet as you are unlikely to hear oncoming vehicles and the like.)

This is purely a matter of personal taste of course but for me, it has to be something that is up-tempo and help gets the blood flowing.  That means anything on the mellow side is out. 

As much as I enjoy the precision of classical music, an invigorating workout is just not the time for Messers. Beethoven and Mozart. There is a respected time and place for that variety of music but not when I am working up a sweat. I enjoy the music of the 60’s – Four Seasons, Beach Boys, some guy named Elvis and of course The Beatles, Rolling Stones and several others from the British Invasion.  Plenty of really good Motown music from Aretha Franklin, Smokey Robinson, Jackie Wilson, The Temptations and on and on.  I guess I am dating myself but these were the days before gangsta rap and I’m thankful for that. 

I confess to a liking of three chord rock and roll from the likes of AC DC, ZZ Top, or somewhat more modern stuff like Pearl Jam for the purposes of a high tempo workout. No heavy metal however, just straight up rock and roll.

Ah, The Teenage Years

My teenage years were spent in the 70’s but I found that to be a bit of a musical desert.  I know, I know, you are going to say what about Pink Floyd, The Eagles, Chicago, and a host of others? I will counter with Barry Manilow, Abba, and of course who could forget (try as you might) Carl Douglas giving us ‘Kung Fu Fighting’. Need I say more?

Whatever your taste in music, with the proviso that Barry Manilow and Abba does not constitute taste, having something to listen to while you are working out can be a wonderful way to make the time pass quickly and pleasantly, especially if you are doing an indoor routine.

Related Article: Why Music Motivates A Workout

So, get your headphones strapped on with the music of your choice and enjoy your time at the gym, at least until you can get outside!

Your friend, Paul.

And remember – Carpe Diem (but in relaxed sort of way)!


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