Humble pie & shit sandwiches

23 May

Why do I love cycling so much? The fact that I can eat 5,000+ calories a day and still lose a pound or 3 each month, might have something to do with it.

Indiscriminately Hoovering-in cheese, beer, bacon, ice cream, avocados and fist-fulls of salt-and-vinegar almonds after my Saturday/Sunday rides, and then going out for a steak dinner in a new pair of smaller jeans, is kinda awesome! Jay is invariably impressed with my weekend caloric intake and its confounding, resultant narrowing waistline.

But what really keeps me coming back to the bike are the shit sandwiches and humble pie that my coach is now serving (with equal measures of love and vengeance?) on a weekly basis.

During the week, my assignments are pretty basic. For the month of May, it’s been: 2 hours of rollers on Tuesdays, 2-3 hours of steady, gradual climbing on Wednesdays, and 2-3 hours of “flat, recovery” riding on Thursdays (I don’t ride on Mondays or Fridays).

I’ve followed this pattern for the last 3 weeks. Reliably, I finish Thursday’s ride feeling outstandingly great and ridiculously proud of my now (finally!) increasing speed. “I’m so pro,” I think to myself. “I’ve got this cycling thing in the bag. I’m totally gonna destroy Haleakala next month. Rock. On.”

And then come the weekend assignments.

And up goes my heart rate.

And down goes my speed.

And there goes my ego.

And, BOY, do I suck!

And, *that,* my friends, is awesome.

Getting your ass handed to you by you is an exceptionally addictive form of self-abuse.

You think you’re so great, CZ? BAM! Look at your Garmin! Look at that shitty-assed rpm-mph-hr combo (i.e., low-distressingly low-dangerously high). You suck!

Whatchya gonna do now? That “greatness” feeling was prettyย amazing, right? How can you get back to feeling it again (as if you were ever “great” to begin with)?

You thought that just because your flat-land speed improved by 1.5mph last week, you could just dial-it-in for Haleakala, huh? You were so sure that you were all kinds of badass and awesome. You’re not. You suck.

Well …

I refuse to suck and there are only two (2) ways to not suck on the bike:

1. Stop riding all together (if you don’t do it, you can’t suck at it, right?), or

2. Ride more.

And so I ride.

And for the next 5 weeks, I’ll keep chowing down on my coach’s shit sandwich and humble pie “secret recipes,” confident that they will yield success on Haleakala — or at the very least allow me to keep consuming lots o’ bacon, beer, ice cream, avocados, and cheese!


Parting Thought: Dig within. Within is the wellspring of Good; and it is always ready to bubble up, if you just dig. ~Marcus Aurelius

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