Last night I was riding over to a local bike shop for their regular Tuesday night ride. I decided in late July that I wanted to improve my cadence, so I finally broke down and bought a Garmin (I held out for over a year). I know I look at it way too frequently when I ride, but I didn’t realize just how dependent I had become until last night. I had knocked the cadence sensor out of alignment but I didn’t realize it until it was too late to stop and fix it (because I couldn’t let the middle aged guys who I have an unofficial race with win). I didn’t know how much it had changed my riding habits until then. I was rolling away from the shop staring at the blank reading and trying to figure out how I was going to make it through the ride.
Obviously, this wasn’t going to directly affect my ability to ride. I’ve ridden my entire life up until a few weeks ago without a Garmin. However, it messed with my head so much that I was a little concerned about how reliant I was on this little computer. I was actually considering not riding because of a sensor being kicked a few centimeters off. Bad weather, illness, and mechanical problems didn’t phase me, so I was shocked by my reaction to this.
Instead of continuing to freak out, I decided to shut the computer off and just ride. I’ve ridden that route with those same guys all summer; I had no need for the data. I realized that without my computer to race against, I just raced against the same guys I always race against; nothing had actually changed.