Yesterday was not forecast to be a great riding day. It was supposed to be in the high 50’s, but overcast and windy, so I didn’t have any expectations for getting a ride in. When I got up, I ate a snack and drank my pre-workout with the intentions of spending a couple of hours at the gym to make up for not having went the day before. While I was getting ready for the gym, Dwayne walked out to get the mail and upon his return he informed me that it was absolutely beautiful outside, and the wind really wasn’t that bad. Having already drank my pre-workout, and him needing to finish up a tire rotation on his mom’s Subaru, we agreed that we would see how the weather was after I got back from the gym and he finished his expected duties.
So off to the gym I went, figuring that the skies were probably going to cloud up and the wind would pick up as the day went, still not expecting to get a ride in. I decided I would get my main leg lifts in (squats, deadlifts, leg extensions and curls, and calf raises) and then see how things looked after that to decide if I would stick around and do some accessory work, or head home in hopes of actually getting to ride.
After every set, I couldn’t help but stare out the gym window, longing to be out on the bike instead of in the gym. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love to workout and lift weights, it is an obsession for me, but it doesn’t even come close to my love for riding my motorcycles. So after 45 minutes of grinding away, I couldn’t take it anymore, so I forced myself to get a good stretch, and practically ran out of the gym and to my vehicle to get back to my house.
When I arrived home, I pulled into the garage to find Dwayne checking the bikes over with a big smile on his face, clearly thinking the same thing as me. I’m pretty sure I’ve never gotten cleaned up after the gym so fast in my life!
Since it was almost lunch time by this point, and neither of us wanted to take the time to eat something before hitting the road, we decided to ride about 20 miles over to one of our favorite barbecue places and share a sampler platter before hitting the road for more fun. This is worth mentioning just for the fact that barbecue is actually a big part of our motorcycling adventures. We like to joke that we are on a lifelong mission to find the best barbecue joints the US has to offer (and if you have suggestions, please share, because we are always looking for our next contender), so quite often we will find a place we haven’t been to within 200 miles of us, and we will plan a day trip with the curviest routes we can find there and back, and we will leave out after breakfast, work up a hunger on the ride there, eat lunch at the destination, and then head home, usually on a different route unless there are no other decent options, in which case we will just backtrack the way we came.
After lunch we gassed up the bikes and left the main roads in favor of exploring some backroads we had never been down before. Now, one thing to note about Indiana is that the roads are generally the last thing the state and counties want to spend money on. The roads have to get so bad that they really just can’t push it off anymore before they are willing to do something about it. So as you can imagine, a lot of our backroads are filled with potholes and bad patch jobs. I was once again amazed at how well the Tiger handles these poorly maintained roads. It just soaks the bumps and potholes right up, and feels entirely comfortable and capable the whole time.
We spent a few hours playing around on these roads, a lot of which we had never been down before, which added to the excitement because we got to check out new scenery and explore new places. Towards the end of our ride the skies started to darken and the temperature began to drop, so I switched my heated grips on low to keep my hands happy, and we booked it to the house before mother nature had a chance to make us cold AND wet. All-in-all we only rode 100 miles since we had to maintain a leisurely pace so that we could enjoy the sights and be cautious on unfamiliar roads.
I have to say, I am excited about the new opportunities the Tiger has opened up for me. I wouldn’t have been able to enjoy such a ride as much on my Yamaha due to the lack of capabilities of its sporty suspension, and although I will always love speeding fast through long sweeping curves and technical twisties, I am having a blast dialing things back a bit and exploring new places I previously wouldn’t have thought to go.
This summer just might be the best I’ve experienced yet 😉