... That's how I've been feeling for the last week or so. I've checked Mike over a half-dozen times to see if brakes are touching rims, if gears are grinding, if anything's misaligned or misconnected. If the tires are losing air (which they are a little, but that's apparently not the cause.) I've checked everything. And yet every day it's been getting a little bit harder to move. Every day it's been feeling more and more like I'm just working harder for less result. Like I've been switching my gears lower and lower, and still feeling leaden. Like my back tire's stuck in mud. It's infuriating (a couple of times I've lost patience, and, swearing out loud, have stood up on the pedals and cranked angrily forward to try and get some speed, only to drop back into the saddle and go back to slogging along the road with aching thighs.)
Why? No idea. It could be the fall wind (persistent, cold, pushy in a way summer winds usually aren't.) It could be that slightly flabby back tire (which I'll fix tonight as soon as I can unearth the pump from my closet.) It could be whatever's making that unhappy grinding noise in Mike's drive train (he so needs a checkup before winter...) It could be stress. It's been a long, long couple of weeks marked with a certain level of mental pressure. That kind of thing can have a draining effect.
But then I got on the road this morning to go to a four-year-old friend's birthday party. And the glide was back. I felt strong again. It was grey and drizzly, not enough to warrant raingear, and warm enough to be comfortable in the wet, and I sailed along the pathway making a ssssssshhhhhhtttt noise over the wet fallen leaves, back in my usual gear range (5 and 6, not the sad and pathetic 3 and 4 I'd been working in for days.)
What had changed? No idea. I don't hear that grinding noise anymore, so maybe that's something. Or maybe it was all mental: and therefore the evening I spent last night making a nice dinner, doing some T-shirt refashioning and watching movies, and the morning of coffee, guitar, and new SF novel on the couch, were all I really needed to get my swoosh back.
I don't care how it happened, though, I'm just glad it did. I was starting to feel so ... weak. Sluggish. (Imagine me saying this in a melodramatic superhero voice) My powers! They... they're... back! At last. Now, off to defeat Doctor Despondence and his sidekick Mr. Grumpy!