You did the ride today. The one you fretted over. The one where you were sure you would need to walk the hills or at least one or two.
It was hot today, 80 degrees at the start of the ride and nearly 90 by the end. It was humid as well. Very humid, like breathing through a hot wet towel.
Tough conditions to be sure.
So how did you do?
I know how you did. I know that you didn’t walk a single hill. I know that you averaged 16.5 miles per hour while moving despite the slow climb of a couple of the hills. I know you rode strong and sure.
Don’t you feel silly now? All that fretting. All that angst. And you nailed it. You climbed better than you have all year. You rode on the flats and the rollers better than you have all year. You were riding on that flats in the 20 mile per hour range at times, though mostly 18-19. You looked down and saw 22 and 23 on more than one occasion (though those were on slight downgrades).
To make a long story short: you must have faith in what you have accomplished. You need to come to grips with a simple fact: you are not HIM anymore. You are not out of shape. You are not fat. You are trim and you are fit and you have to start accepting this as a simple fact of life. This is who you are now. Deal with it. Learn it. Live it.
But live the life you have available to you now. RIDE THE HILLS! Push yourself. BELIEVE IN YOURSELF.
People who have seen you ride say you ride smoothly and you ride strongly. You have a solid cadence and you handle the bike well (that drifting to the left thing seems under control now). You will get good at the hills; just stop avoiding them. It will not be fun but hard work will get you there.
That’s it. That is all I have to say. Believe in yourself. What you have done in 18 months is amazing. Accept it and live it.